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The Pull Phase: Week 3 of our front crawl technique correction series

Week 3 of our front crawl technique correction series: The Pull Phase

The pull phase starts from the point where your forearm is in line with your shoulders to your waist. It is important to have good arms and hand path and alignment, in the pull phase, so that your hand and palm track and point backwards in the swim stroke. You are looking to try and create a triangle with the side of your body, and arm bent to 90 degrees in the pull phase. This will ensure that your arm and elbow don't collapse inward (winging as we call it) or pull too wide or cross over or towards the midline of your body.

This will ensure that the largest volume of water possible (which you caught in the catch phase) is transferred backwards to propel you forwards with maximum efficiency and effecttiveness!!

If you only do one swim drill this week, do this....!!

Long doggie paddle


One arm at a time, from the top of the stroke, bend your arm into an early vertical forearm, with your elbow bent to 90 degrees, and hand tracking from shoulder to hip joint slightly under your body With fins on,


It helps you to understand and see what your arms are doing in slow motion. Your hands should track in a virtual straight line in front of your shoulder joint with a high and wide elbow position, down the rail of your body, and finish with your arm straight and hand by your thigh. This front crawl drill will help you to improve your catch and the volume of water you pull through and past yourself. Learn how to do this and identify a 90 degree elbow bend in the catch

Long doggie paddle swim drill How to increase your awareness for front crawl in the underwater phases!

Doggie paddle is an excellent swim drill to do, and you should do this all in slow motion to achieve the greatest benefit!

Your muscles will learn much better on a neuro muscular level how to move, and by doing it slower, you'll be able to maintain perfect technique


• Enhanced feel for the water

• Catch phase mechanics

• Achieving an early vertical forearm

• Gliding for a better entry and no bubbles

• A stronger more controlled push phase

One arm at a time, underwater, and from the top of the stroke, bend your arm into an early vertical forearm. Do this with your elbow bent to 90 degrees, and your hand tracking from your shoulder to hip joint slightly under your body. To recover, reverse this motion by sliding your palm up and into towards your body, and extending forwards twisting your hand palm down into the glide as your recover under your trunk. Reach into the glide so that your hips rotate a bit. Repeat on the other side.

You do this in 2 ways:

(1) When Reaching - reach firmly and very straight to cut water around you cleanly, and

(2) when Recovering - Slowly sliding your hand back to the front so as not to incur any major drag.

Keep your palm facing in towards your body and close Note the head stays looking down, and simply rotates to breathe. Note also how the recovering-arm almost 'catches up' to the front-arm before you pull This drill aims to teach you an awareness of streamlining and how to cut drag out of the equation.

Swim 4x50m as 25 long dog paddle, 25m normal front crawl.10 seconds rest.

To find out which areas of your front crawl stroke need correcting, and which drills are best for you book a series endless pool swim video analysis lessons in Chertsey, Surrey, KT16


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