What Is The Breaststroke In Swimming?
In this stroke, the positioning of the body is very important. While the swimmer should be horizontal, the legs should be tilted slightly downward in order for the legs to kick beneath the water.
The arms should be kept high and in motion, however, the elbows should mostly stay right below the surface of the water. Additionally, the arms should not move too wide, most of the power will come from the leg movement. Leg positioning for this stroke should include bent knees and legs to be about hip length apart. When finishing a full kick, the swimmer’s legs should reunite and extend fully behind the swimmer.
Something to keep in mind for this stroke is timing. The swimmer should always have a movement pushing them through the water, therefore, the timing between the legs and arms is imperative.
How To Breathe On The Breaststroke
Natural movement is the key to breathing while performing the breaststroke. The shoulders and head will rise on their own allowing for the swimmer to take a quick breath. The chin should be lifted right above the surface of the water, allowing for a breath through the mouth, followed by an exhale once the head is resubmerged.
What Not To Do On The Breaststroke
The first don’t for the breaststroke is for the swimmer to not just lift their head. This not only could cause a drag in the swimmer's speed but also discomfort and pain. The shoulders and head should be working together. Another key to a good breaststroke is for the arms and legs to not be too wide. Swimmers should not exaggerate the stroke too much, this will lead to more stress and effort than needed, causing quick exhaustion.
While this stroke is known as one of the slower strokes, with small adjustments, swimmers can improve their speed and momentum.