Tips & Training

Butterfly: Press Forward, Not Down

3/19/2012

BY KATIE ARNOLD//NATIONAL TEAM COACH FELLOW

Want to know the key to swimming fast butterfly? You have to maintain forward momentum throughout the stroke.

 

Sounds easy, right?

 

While this may seem simple enough, it requires swimmers to combine two key elements. As previously discussed, having two equally powerful kicks in butterfly is very important. This is the first key to a balanced stroke and maintaining forward momentum during the arm recovery.

 

The other key element of fast butterfly is a body-driven stroke.

 

Many swimmers throw the head and/or arms down to initiate the press and drive the hips up. This action stops forward momentum and often results in pressing too deep.

 

Instead, swimmers should focus on pressing the chin and chest forward with the eyes looking slightly forward. This will result in the chin being the lowest point during the press while the arms extend and reach forward. The video below shows a few examples of what this press should look like:




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