View Full Version : lead legs
08-08-2005, 09:01 AM
Hi Guys, I finally got my stroke looked at yesterday by a young club swimmer and discovered that my real problem is my legs. I swim 400m in 9 mins as opposed to a friend who swim in 6 mins yet when we swam with a pullbuoy he was only slightly faster. We then swam with a float and legs only, while he effortlessly moved away I DID NOT MOVE.... I seem to have no felxibility in my ankles and legs as they stay very straight and even when relaxed ankles don't loosen up. I feel this this may be as a result of 20 years of football injuries and much running. Though I now know where my probelm lies I have no idea how to fix it, is there certain drills/stretches etc that can help my leg kick ? As they are not kicking properly i get very exhausted so stop kicking and then have drag problems
08-08-2005, 12:18 PM
Here are a couple of suggestions:
1. Get some Zoomers (small fins) and try to get some propulsion into your kick. Work progressively. This might help your ankle flexibility and your kick efficiency. When you have made some progress with the Zoomers, gradually introduce kicking without Zoomers.
2. Work on body position. (If your legs are dropping, chances are you're not in balance and need to get the front end of your body into a better position.) Drills for this can be found e.g. on http://www.cruciblefitness.com/etips/swimclinicnotes02.htm
and lots of other places. (To over simplify) the thing to emphasise is getting head and torso down so legs come up, while maintaining streamlining.
3. Ask your helpful young club friend to keep an eye on your progress - or maybe even talk to the coach!
08-08-2005, 01:18 PM
are zoomers allowed in public pools ? - are there any dryland exersizes one can do ?
08-08-2005, 04:02 PM
Zoomers are quite soft, with rounded edges and much smaller than normal flippers, so they are safe to use with other swimmers around. I've no idea whether your pool will let you use them - you can but ask.
As for exercises, the one I use is to sit on my heels, legs together (shins on the floor), gently rock back to stretch the ankle and top of the foot. There are devices to help, see
(Before you ask, no I'm not on commission!)
There are plenty of articles on the web on ankle stretching
http://www.alexandriamasters.com/articles/flutter.htm (an article by the Zoomer man himself)
You would do well to see a physio if you have really acute ankle inflexibility - you don't want to do anything too severe without checking with an expert. Particularly if you are a wrinkly like me.
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