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Why Proper Breaststroke Techniques Are So Important

Karla Drill: Why Proper Breaststroke Techniques Are So Important
Adam Peaty competes in the Mens Open 200m Breaststroke during the 2014 British Gas Swimming Championships at Tollcross International Swimming Centre, Glasgow. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Thursday April 10, 2014. Photo credit should read: Danny Lawson/PA Wire

Breaststroke is the most inefficient and slowest strokes among all other 4 swimming stroke. It is also the key to a successful IM. Breaststroke is a swimming style in which the swimmer is on his or her chest and the torso does not rotate. It is the most popular recreational style due to the swimmer’s head being out of the water a large portion of the time, and that it can swim comfortably at slow speeds. In most swimming classes, beginners learn either the breaststroke or the freestyles swimming first. However, at the competitive level, swimming breaststroke at speed requires comparable endurance and strength to other strokes. Some people refer to breaststroke as the “frog” stroke, as the arms and legs move somewhat like a frog swimming in the water. The stroke itself is the slowest of any competitive strokes and is thought to be the oldest of all swimming strokes. Proper Breaststroke Techniques Are So Important…

Most important thing about Proper Breaststroke techniques is :-

“In Breaststroke swimming, the arm pull does not determine breaststroke speed. If it determine speed, the world class breaststrokers/Olympic gold medalist breaststrokers would be pulling faster or pulling further back when swimming faster breaststoroke.”

Note all these 8 key points to your workout notepad:-

the arm pull is critically important for setting up the entire breaststroke swimming. Here is what’s important key points about the Proper breaststroke techniques “pull“:

  1. Start the breaststroke arm pulls by sculling outward, with the hands facing the side of the swimming pool.
  2. It is not like backstroke, freestyle, or butterfly swimming where you use to catch a lot of water in the initial phase of the pull(first pull).
  3. The outward scull holds a perfect body position(Y) and sets up the rest of the stroke to be the best possible.
  4. In breaststroke pulling the arms never push water directly backward.
  5. The further back your hands go, the harder it is to shoot them forward. It’s ok if your elbows come next to your body, but keep your hands in front of your chest.
  6. You won’t feel like you are pulling as much water as you can, but your stroke will be better in the end because you can shoot your hands.
  7. Bring your hands together as they extend forward direction with using your elbows to push your hands forward(but don’t squeeze your elbows  close together).
  8. At the very same time just press your chest and face forward to get your body forward.

breaststroke arms teaching points Four Competitive stroke breaststroke arms teaching points breaststroke arms teaching points Four Competitive stroke

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Why Proper Breaststroke Techniques Are So Important:-


Head Above Water

I saw many times the swimmers(both young and older) often use a head above water position, which I think is not proper breaststroke techniques. Maybe it is because the swimmer is uncomfortable putting his or her face in the water or because he thinks he is using less energy. But if you also use “Head Above Water” in breaststroke then you should stop doing this because your head above water can put a significant and unnecessary strain on your neck.


“Just go for a walk for twenty minutes with your face pointed straight up towards the clouds. After your short leisurely walk., you would have quite a neck ache!

Breaststroke with your head above water puts your body in essentially the same position.


Proper Spinal position

While performing the breaststroke swimming, your spine should remain straight from your head to your tailbone.

Here are some tips to help you keep your spine properly aligned as you swim the breaststroke:-

  • Position your head slightly forward with a mild tuck in your chin to help you keep your neck straight.
  • Pull in your abdominal muscles to support your straight back.
  • Keep your hips as close to the surface as possible to avoid a bend in your lower spine.
  • As your arms start the pull phase, bring your head out of the water and breathe in through your mouth. Keep your head and shoulders relaxed and free from tension.
  • As you reach your arms forward in the recovery stage, extend your head forward into the water with your ears in line with your biceps. Exhale slowly through your nose or mouth.

Developing a proper breaststroke techniques for any swim stroke takes time and training, but these tips will help you avoid straining your neck and back while you perfect your efficiency in the water.

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About the author

Sanuj Srivastava

Hello everyone ! myself Sanuj Srivastava, I'm a National swimmer and Computer Olympiad winner. I'm working on writing articles for competitive swimming. If you have some problem in swimming that needs some creative injection then that’s where I come in!
My aim is to bring across your message and identity in the most creative way.

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