Backstroke - Aggressive Wave

Mar 24, 2009
Backstroke - Aggressive Wave

This drill can be considered the next step from the Backstroke - Wave Drill.

Why Do It:
Aggressive Wave Backstroke Drill uses exaggeration to teach correct hand position, head position, shoulder roll, hip rotation, recovery momentum, continuous kick, stroke synergy, and position in the water.

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How to Do It:
1.  Push off the wall, take two backstroke strokes, and then keep the left arm in streamline.
2.  Bring the right arm up, thumb first, to about 40 degrees.  If you're a more advanced swimmer, bring it up to 90 degrees.  The higher the angle, the faster your legs have to kick in order to keep you on top of the water.
3.  Drop the right arm down and quickly tap the water with your little finger.  Then, with a lot of momentum, put the right arm in entry position over the head, little finger first.  This forces the head to be in a laid-back position because, if you lift your head, you'll sink.   
4.  As the right hand goes from pinky down to pinky up, the left arm begins the pull, which forces the left shoulder down and then brings it up under the chin.  The right shoulder comes up, over and down.   By sending the arm out, putting it back in, and then going into a quick recovery, the recovery stage is exaggerated at the end of the pull.  The higher you send the hand before dropping it back into the water, the more beneficial the drill becomes.  

How to Do It Really Well (the Fine Points):
This is not a laid-back drill.  It expends a lot of energy.  This is a difficult drill.  It is a jerky drill.  It is a fast drill.  To do it slowly would negate the point.  The point is to exaggerate critical stages in the stroke, alternately using force and momentum to continue forward movement on top of the water.  This is not a drill for beginning swimmers trying to learn backstroke; it should be used as a "tune-up" drill for those who are already familiiar with the stroke.  When you do the drill, it's best to alternate equal distances of the drill, and then the stroke.

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