Breaststroke - Building Rhythm

Nov 4, 2008
Breaststroke - Building Rhythm

With it being election day, we're going to give two variations on this great teaching drill.  You could also say that timing an election campaign is as tricky as creating a smooth rhythm in breaststroke.  Too much too soon, or too little too late can give or take away the desired results.

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 - Watch Amanda Beard demonstrate her great breaststroke!

Why Do It:
Helping swimmers understand rhythm in breaststroke, and learning what rhythm feels like, can be a difficult task.  Hopping in the water with them and getting involved can prove as helpful as calling your local representative when they do something silly, which happens often.  While it may not always change things, at least you were involved in the process.

How to Do It:
1.  Put on  your politically correct Finis Swimmers Snorkel.  For us, the American flag is proudly displayed... and don't forget nose plugs if you need them.
2.  Push off the wall next to your swimmer and, in unison, begin a slow, steady hand-lead body-dolphin movement.
3.  Be sure  to match your swimmer's rhythm, rather than have them adjust to you.  They'll have enough to think about already.
4.  Begin the outsweep as the body presses down into the water, and on each outsweep...
5.  ...instruct the swimmer to CLAP your hand.
6.  This CLAPPING of the hands gives your swimmer a target rhythm and a place to send her hand.  After a few of these, or when you feel like your swimmer has "got it," allow them to go on their own... watching to see if indeed they do "have it."

How to Do It Really Well (the FIne Points):
Keep things small and don't worry about how slow or fast you go.  Match the swimmer's rhythm, and if the body sizes are much different, the swimmer, or the coach, can put on fins to equalize the rates.

How to Do It Like a Politician:
Have your swimmer hand you a 1-dollar bill.  Having something to pass can slow down the process, just like in politics.  And because money is involved, you'll get their attention (just like in politics).   And, if your swimmer is like most politicians, they will be very good at passing the buck, so you'll get great results.  

Pass the buck back and forth, making sure not to drop it... but if you do, don't worry.  Go to one of the other swimmers and grab another buck from them... then start passing it again.   If you lose the money, think like a politician and don't worry about it... it's not your money anyway... and there'll always be more.

Now go out and vote for your favorite politician.

If you'd like to order the limited-edition Finis USA Swimmer's Snorkel, click here.

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