If you’ve worn a band in your freestyle before, some of those rubber bands or those synthetic bands that you can tie around your feet so that you don’t kick…then you’ll know just how important it is to kick to balance and time your stroke.

FINIS Pulling Ankle StrapWhen you’ve got a band on, it keeps your feet and legs together so you can’t move them apart and you’ll find your legs most likely will sink and your feet will sink. When you take it off, your legs will rise and you can move your legs a bit to help with the timing and the balance of your stroke.

I hear from a lot of triathletes particularly, they say that, “I don’t need to kick, I am a triathlete.” But that’s just not true. It’s true that you’ll probably won’t get much propulsion from your kick.

How important is kick in freestyle?

Only elite swimmers really get much propulsion from their kick. Whereas the majority of swimmers and triathletes, they use it for balance and timing. Go ahead and get yourself a band and see just how much restriction you get when you’ve got a band on. And how much the timing of your stroke and your balance is affected when you can’t move your legs.

I recommend using a tyre tube which has been cut into a band or a Finis Swim Band which are only a couple of dollars.