Swimming Exercises: Streamline, Hip/Shoulder connection, and Core Work
Swimming Tips by Dan Daly
DALY Tip 1: Tighten up your streamline for better walls and faster swims.
An efficient streamline is
1. Mobility - freedom to get into position
2. Stability - maintaining position in the shoulders and core
Maximize free speed off every wall
1. One hand over the other, arms tucked to or behind your head
2. Feet together and pointed
3. 2ft under the water, initiating a powerful kick before moment slows
Give these drills a shot to improve mobility, position, and speed. ➡️
DALY Tip 2: Pool and dryland drills to help you connect your hip and opposite shoulder.
2-Beat Kick - 2 kicks per stroke cycle, or 1 kick for every pull. As the left arm pulls, the left leg kicks, and vice versa. Most efficient. Ideal for longer distances, triathlon, and sub maximal efforts. Best for swimmers with stronger, lower stroke rate techniques. A natural rhythm similar to the coordination of the arms and legs in walking or crawling.
4-Beat Kick - 4 Kicks per stroke cycle, or 4 kicks per 4 pulls. Hybrid tempo balancing efficiency and propulsion. Used in competitive middle distance, particularly the gallop technique currently seen in some of the worlds best middle distance racers.
6-Beat Kick - Most propulsive. Greatest energy demand. Ideal for shorter distances, and competitive racing. Best for swimmers with a high stroke and kick tempo. Provides stability and balance.
Crossbody connection at hand entry is the most important to hit - no matter the beat style you are using. You cannot do a true 6-beat kick without hitting your cross connection right. Think throwing a ball, punching, or kicking. Watch the video below ➡️ for pool and dryland drills to help you connect your hip and opposite shoulder.
DALY Tip 3: The importance of mixing up your strokes
Swimming is pulling centric, but the phases of each stroke have additional joint actions. It's important to mix up your strokes to balance out the muscular adaptations, offset repetitive stress, and reduce injury risk. Just like you would with the mix of push, pull, hinge squat in your dryland training.
DALY Tip 4: Exercises for a strong core
A stable core allows you to propel energy from your shoulders to your hips. Train your shoulders and hips around a streamlined core.
Here’s a few dryland core drills to help you develop stability and strength:
Push Ups - stable core, mobile shoulders
Wall Bug - core and shoulder stability, hip mobility
Overhead March - loaded shoulder and core stability, hip mobility