All Strokes – Dolphin/Breast-Kick Combo

Many swimmers…especially Masters swimmers…find it challenging to do dolphin kick on their back.  This week’s drill, which combines dolphin kick with breaststroke kick, will help you build the necessary muscles and technique.

Why Do It:
Dolphin kick is so important to fast swimming that it’s sometimes called "the fifth stroke."   Every swimmer needs this skill.  But in the learning stage, swimmers can be so slow at it, that they give up practicing…and then they NEVER learn how to do it.  Dolphin/Breast-Kick Combo, because it gives you a little boost of propulsion, encourages you to keep practicing until one day you’ll be able to do an entire length of dolphin kick on your back.

How to Do It:
1.  Push off on your back with arms in streamline.  Kick to the surface and start alternating one breaststroke kick…one dolphin kick.  Keep both kicks small and quick, and try to flow from one kick right into the next.  On the dolphin kicks, try to keep your feet near the surface.
2.  Push off again and this time alternate one breaststroke kick and TWO dolphin kicks.  Again, keep the kicks small and quick, and search for a rhythm that keeps you moving.
3.  As you find your rhythm, try adding more dolphin kicks.
4.  Or…start with a pattern of 1 breast…1 fly, then increase the pattern to 1 and 2…1 and 3…1 and 4.

How to Do It Really Well (the Fine Points):
Dolphin/Breast-Kick Combo works best when your breeaststroke kick is narrow and compact, and when you can flow from the close of the breaststroke kick…right into the first dolphin kick.    So, when you practice this drill, you’re actually working on two technique points:  dolphin kick, obviously, but also keeping your breaststroke kick small and compact.