When I’m coaching swimmers, it doesn’t matter what their level, whether they are National level swimmers and triathletes or beginners, one of the most important things is maintaining your speed in freestyle.

What your fingertips do as you’re extending forward affects your speed.

How It Works

What we are looking for here is keeping your fingertips below your wrist as you are extending forward because:

Keeping Momentum

If you find that you lose speed as you are extending forward it might be because you are allowing your fingertips to raise up close to the surface when your hands are out in front. Watch the video above for how to maintain the right position during your extension/glide phase.

In your next session, think about extending forward, keeping your fingertips either neutral or slightly below your wrist as you are reaching forward.

You will get a better catch, you will create less drag and you will be swimming faster freestyle as a result.

We go into more detail about this in Effortless Swimming Membership Program, our online coaching program. It’s for swimmers and triathletes who want to take the next step with their swimming. Go to Effortless Swimming Membership Program to find out more.

Remember in your next session — Think about what your fingertips are doing and gain extra speed by keeping them in the correct position.

4 Responses

  1. It would appear, in this video, that the Triathlete’s recovering arm is over reaching, causing his elbow to drop and enter the water before his hand. Would it not be more efficient to have the hand enter the water sooner, with an arched arm, and then extend under the waters surface to achieve full extension?

  2. @Donna – He’s swimming at 100% effort so there’s more air on his forearms when he’s entering but when he starts his catch he’s holding a lot of water.

  3. @Tony – In most cases it is more efficient. It depends on the swimmer and their stroke. Peter uses a higher stroke rate which is great for open water swimming. He could probably enter a touch earlier but the catch and pull are excellent which is most important thing.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Join the 5 Day Catch Challenge
for Only $10


Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consetetur
sadipscing elitr, sed diam nonumy eirmod tempor

By signing up you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

Already have an account? Sign in.

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