Freestyle - Floating-Paddle Drill

Mar 2, 2007
Freestyle - Floating-Paddle Drill

This fun, quick drill helps you work on extension, and challenges you to really direct your energy forward.

Most fun drills come to you by accident, and this one is no exception. When swimming with paddles, you may sometimes feel this drill whether you want to or not.

Why Do It:

This adds a new dimension of thought when swimming with paddles, and makes you acutely aware of how your hand is extending forward. You may THINK you're reaching directly forward when, in fact, you are reaching UP or DOWN. This is a quick way to check what you're doing without the use of underwater video.

How To Do It:

1. Start by taking your favorite paddles, and loosening the straps. Our swimmer has only one strap over his middle finger, and that has been quickly loosened enough so that the paddle can easily move away from the hand, just a bit.

2. Swim freestyle, focusing on your forward extension.

3. During this extension, feel the paddle start to separate from your hand. The goal is to have it fly directly parallel with your hand.

4. Play with it enough to feel the paddle floating just beneath your hand.

How To Do It Really Well (the Fine Points):

This entire drill is really a fine point. To reach a level of mastery where the paddles don't rip away from your hand is quite a trick. You'll want to do this drill while swimming at a fairly relaxed pace. If you go too fast, you won't have the time you need to really feel what's going on out front.

When loosening the paddles, they should be just tight enough to stay connected with your hands during the recovery.

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