Don’t Enter Here

Welcome to Feedback Friday number 27, where each week we’re bringing you the analysis of someone’s stroke. In today’s episode, we’ve got someone here who attended our clinic recently and made quite good changes in the space of the three and a half hour session. I want to talk you through those changes that he was able to make and hope you can relate something back to your own swimming.
One of the main things that we worked on was the position that the hand was entering, both hands were entering too close to the head. You can see this entry point here, it’s 15 centimeters or so in front of his head. That entry point is just a little bit too steep to really set the catch up very well, so he was entering too close to the head coming in quite steep and then as a result going too deep on the entry point in terms of where he’s starting the catch, he’s about 10, 15 maybe 20 centimeters below the line of where we want to be for the catch. We want the fingertips to be about armpit depth here when he finishes extending and reaching forwards the reason for this is in that position you’re creating the least amount of drag and you’ve got enough for him to set up a good catch out in front in terms of you’re not going to miss any of it. If you’re starting down too low, you end up missing 10, 15, 20 centimeters of it so that’s the right arm on the left arm even steeper. You can see there it’s just a bit too close to the head coming in quite sharply. That oncoming water is going to hit the top of the arm and the forearm and then again. See how it then just straightens out there, so we want to reduce the steepness of that entry by entering further out in front, so that’s the that’s the first thing.
 The other thing I want you to notice they’re somewhat due to that entry point is have a look where the fingers are facing here through that part of the stroke, notice how they’re still facing primarily forwards and I think on the right hand, if we bring it back slightly let’s have a look at the right hand, from here, this is where we want to start to tip the fingertips down to be able to get the forearm. The hand is working as one paddle setting that up so it can then start to press backwards but you can see how the fingertips are facing forwards, starts to face down now which is good but if you just look at that catch position that elbow slightly dropped and it’s just that he’s missing that early part of the catch. What we worked on was entering further out in front of the head and this is the the before still so again you can just see that point. What we like to see here, we want the elbow up the fingertips first which he’s doing but it’s got to come further out in front. This athlete here is a triathlete, so he’s going to be racing open water and a lot of times with a wetsuit on as well so what we normally want to try and do there is enter usually as far out as possible while you’ve still got that triangle shape so the elbows up the fingertips first. If we look at the right hand here coming in over again that’s south sharp that angle is we’ve got to get that further out so for most people enter as far out as you possibly can go while you’ve still got that triangle shape there. It doesn’t mean you go to full extension, I don’t want your elbow to be entering first, I just want your fingertips to go first so if we look at the after shot, now this is where he worked on going further forwards and one thing to note here and you know I cover this with well in the clinics all the time with swimmers who join our online coaching membership where they send videos in is, with a lot of things in used to me you’re gonna have to exaggerate it to make a change so for example here with this form, he was entering very close to the head and he had to go a lot further out in front. Now to him, he said this felt a long way out he really had to exaggerate the change if he tried to change it just a little bit, probably wouldn’t make a change at all so just keep that in the back of your mind with a lot of changes, not all but some you’re going to have to exaggerate it so you can see this much better entry point , entering further out probably another 10 15 centimeters from where he was and see how much better that is in terms of the I guess the gradual change in depth there and gets himself into a really good position here, fingers below the wrist wrist below the elbow and the fingertips that a little bit below the armpits so much better right hand same thing much better further out in front pretty good starting catch position here like to come up a little bit more at the hands just a bit below the armpit. We’ll see if he gets in on another stroke here I think you probably got it on that one that so let’s bring it back, you can see it here on this stroke, see much smoother on the entry, heaps better so you can see how that’s kind of create less drag that’s going to help him set up a better catch. One thing I want you to notice here too now he’s able to get those fingertips starting to point down a little bit more earlier on. In that catch part of the stroke and you know the catch is starting to come together, let’s have a look at the left arm yeah again good those fingertips are starting to then point down a little bit earlier and much better on that one there, Overall in the space of just that it’s not a long session three and a half hours, I want to make two really key changes to his stroke.
So these things take time, as I say in quite a few of these videos if you make a change straightaway in the clinic or you make it within the space of a month in the membership, that’s great but these changes are long-term because we’re changing habits and we’re changing motor patterns. To break some of these and to be able to reinforce it a new habit quite often it’s going to take you at least two months. So have the long-term approach to your swimming and make sure you’re doing the hard work involved in terms if you’ve got to get to the pool three times a week at least and you’ve got to put the effort in you’ve got to be changing your pace up in training. You may need to be doing some strength work some stretching.
There’s a lot that goes into improving your swimming techniques just one aspect but it is a big aspect so you know if you’re looking for some of those things that you can do to help improve your swimming then you might want to look at technique and a number of those other things and that’s what I look at inside the Effortless Swimming Membership, where we have swimmers all around the world who join me for coaching where they send in their videos, I do an analysis for them and we work together over a period of months and years to help improve, this for me and then we can also look at other things as well one thing I asked in the last video and I want you to let me know below in the comments is you know most of you aren’t located in Australia, so when it comes to attending a clinic it can be quite difficult what I’m looking to do is record would be like a virtual clinic, so basically record all the things that we teach in the the same sort of structure format and and I guess in how the the way that we’d like to build up a stroke so if you want me to to record. that’s something I’m looking to record in the next couple of weeks so something like a virtual clinic where if you’re not in Australia and you can’t attend a clinic then you can get all the same information and the same drills and and all that stuff that we teach the clinics basically just through video format so something that I’m looking to do let me know in the comments below if that’s something that would help you and yeah. If enough of you interested that’s something that I’ll put together in the next couple of weeks so thank you for watching Feedback Friday number 27.  We’re going to be back next week again with another swimmer who attended a clinic and also let me know in the comments below if there’s anything any topics that you want me to cover. We have a whole bunch of videos, I think we’ve got over 100 hundred and 50 videos now in the in this YouTube channel, so there’s a lot of information maybe we haven’t covered something or maybe there’s something that you want me to go into a bit more depth about and if that’s the case just let me know. One of the next videos I’m going to do is I’m breathing quite a few of you have asked about breathing what can you do to breathe easier maybe be better balanced. So in the next video I’m going to cover that so again thanks for watching I’m Bretton Ford, if you want to join me at a clinic you can see the link below throughout a lot of clinics coming up around Australia we run quite a few clinics a year in most of the capital cities and if you want to join me in the online coaching membership if you’re not located in Australia but you can as well if you’re in Australia then also a link is in the description thanks for watching.


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Brenton and Mitch were great to work with at the clinic, Good to get video analysis to work on straight away, practice some new drills and go home knowing what you need to work on.

Alex McFadyen