Here’s Step #3 in our 4-step sequence for learning the forward dive. If you’ve never gone off the blocks, this is an essential step! But even if you’re comfortable diving from the blocks, starting from the side of the pool can help you try some new things with your hands and feet.
Why Do It:
In Step #3, you’ll take the noodle to the deep end of the pool, and use it to break some old habits and reinforce good technique in the forward dive.
How to Do It:
You’ll need a partner and a noodle for this one, and at least 9 feet of water. Please DO NOT try this in the shallow end or in water less than 9 feet deep.
Have your partner sit or stand on the side and hold the noodle 1 or 2 feet above the water and about 1 or 2 feet away from the side. The distance from the wall depends on the comfort level of the swimmer.
Stand on the side and curl your toes over the edge to get a good grip. Put your hands in powerlock and then get your HEAD in powerlock.
Before you dive, REMEMBER how it felt to dive over the noodle in the shallow end. Remember how you kept your head locked between your shoulders and how you looked BACK at the noodle as you went over.
Keep those images and feelings in your mind as you crouch down and then dive up and over the noodle.
Make a clean, straight arc with your body, and try to have everything flow through one hole in the water. The hands enter first, followed by the arms, head and shoulders, torso, legs, and finally the feet.
If you continue to hit your chest, or if your feet are still flying up behind you, take the noodle and go back to the shallow end for more practice.
Keep practicing until you can enter the water with your body in a long, clean line.
And be sure to come back next week for Step #4.