In Step 3 to learning the underwater dolphin, it’s finally time to take it under water.
Why Do It:
In Steps 1 and 2, you learned the dolphin movement while on the surface of the water. In Step 3, you’ll go through the same learning sequence, but you want to stay away from the surface.
How to Do It:
1. Review and rehearse all 4 steps leading up to this point. Head-lead dolphin on your front. Head-lead dolphin on your back. Hand-lead dolphin on your front. Hand-lead dolphin on your back.
2. Now, simply go through the same sequence while completely under water. Start with head lead on your stomach, and make sure you focus on sending the top of your head on a direct path through the water. Don’t push the face down, but use the body to drive the head forward.
3. Flip over on your back, and try again. This is much tougher with the hands behind, and try your best to NOT tuck the chin, but lay your head back. This gives the water a MUCH better chance to get up your nose, so practice this for short distances, with air constantly coming out of the nose.
4. NOW it’s time for the perfect streamline. Push off on your stomach with your hands in streamline and lock your head between your arms. Drive the hands forward, not up and down, by using the body from the abs, to the hips, and allowing the legs to follow the movement but adding the snap.
5. Flip over on your back and stay in streamline. With your head locked between your arms, remember to allow air to come out through your nose. Continue to focus on your body movement, rather than powering too much from the legs.
How to Do It Really Well (the Fine Points):
When you get to streamline, locking tightly with the hands encourages the body to do the work. If you allow the hands to do the work…letting them go up and down too much… you’ll weaken the snap through the legs. Start to experiment with angles, as we’ll be addressing that, and WHERE to use the underwater dolphin, in the next segment.