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S-shaped front crawl stoke tips?




  • millwardpmillwardp Posts: 20
    I've noticed, despite doing drill after drill and developing what I thought was a good style, that I don't have an S-shaped stroke. It looks like my arm starts to bend very early thus my hand travels down a line past my head to my abdomen until it moves out toward the thigh.

    I've tried artifically forcing the initial movement out but this feels very odd.

    Any tips for developing this stroke?
  • jon_gjon_g Posts: 318
    according to the total immersion swim technique, you're hand should follow a straight line......not go in an s-shape
  • BopomofoBopomofo Posts: 980
    Just out of interest, can you get somebody to stand at the end of the pool while you swim towards them - see if your hand entry is heading in towards your centre-line? It sounds like you are doing this and crossing over underwater as a result.

    I do this when I'm tired [:@]

    Try swimming 'wide'. It will feel very funny at first, but think about aiming your hand entries at 11 o'clock and 1 o'clock. This will help get your catch wider too, and you'll hopefully stop crossing over.

    As for the true 's' shape, I think this is worth pursuing to perfection only if you are really concentrating on your swimming, otherwise just do what comes naturally - you will find if you get your entry correct then your arm has to follow some kind of 's' simply because the joints bend that way. My instructor has a really pronounced 's' shape, and funnily enough she covers 25 meters in about 10 strokes and at amazing speed.

    I'm in the process of correcting a nasty cross-over myself, and getting some decent 's' shape into my stroke. Keep with it... I've had a PB three months in a row at 400m TT.
  • millwardpmillwardp Posts: 20
    A straight line in the pull phase of the stroke?
  • millwardpmillwardp Posts: 20
    Quotes from another forum...do you agree?

    "Don't try and S-shape your pull, instead pull through straight - which is what you're doing. IIRC from the Swimsmooth DVD, the S-shape pull was discredited in 1990 and a straight-through pull is the way forward. So stick with what you're doing, basically."

    "the research done to prove this method (s-shape), was I believe carried out very simply and doesn't consider the dynamic nature of the freestyle stroke.

    Which includes not just the hand as a paddle, but the rest of the arm, torso and legs. All rotating and moving forward at the same time through a cyclic movement, over and past each other at different phases with different depths / angles and varying levels of force applied and resistance / drag therefore experienced.

    Not just merely a paddle moving backwards. "
  • BopomofoBopomofo Posts: 980
    That is interesting. I'm not aiming to make as pronounced an 's' as I can, just kind of noticing that when I get my stroke 'right' there is some 's' movement.

    I'll talk to my coach about it. I can certainly understand that a straight pull is going to acheive straight-forward thrust, but i'd always assumed that the 's' shape lengthens the path of the hand and acknowledges the movements your hand must make because it is connected to your arm / shoulder.

    Try sculling on your back just pushing your hands straight down and you'll get almost nowhere. Done correctly, with the hands moving side-to-side in an 's' and you'll really start moving.

    Both sides of the discussion are really interesting. Thanks for bringing it up. Like I said, I'll ask teacher!

  • TommiTriTommiTri Posts: 879
    As the others have said, what you have to do is try and move your hand/arm back in a straight line, thats what you should be thinking about, but what you dont realise is when you try and do this coupled with you body rotation you arm does move in a slight s-shape, this is what your going for!

    It was decided that trying to teach swimmers to consciously move their hand in an s-shape exaggerated the movement too much, so you got too much deviation from that midline, causing not all of the power to be translated into forward motion. Also with all the other things you have to do simultaneously it was adding too much to try and get people newish to swimming to concentrate on a exact movement (s-shape), it is far easier to get them to focus on a straight movement backwards.

  • millwardpmillwardp Posts: 20
    I swam as normal today...

    My hand travels, relative to my body, in pretty much a straight line (my elbow bends almost immediately as I begin the pull). A life guard watched and confirmed that the rotation of my body resulted in an ever so slight s-shape stroke relative to the water.

    [image]http://forum.220magazine.com/micons/m8.gif[/image] Its not the s-shape prescribed in the books but it will do for me I think. [image]http://forum.220magazine.com/micons/m8.gif[/image]

  • SamutriSamutri Posts: 143
    Just to confuse matters further, I was always told that an S-shaped pull was more efficient because a straight pull produces moving water in front so the relative speed of the hand to the surrounding water is lower, thus resulting in lower speed.

    Not sure if its true (or even makes sense!)
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