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David Marsh, 2012 US Olympic Team Assistant Coach and 12x NCAA Championship Coach at Auburn, presents the Thumper Kick drill to emphasize all of the hip muscles that are used for a powerful kick.
The Thumper Kick drill consists of the swimmer raising a leg out of the water as high as possible, then slamming it back into the water as hard as you can, alternating legs. The goal is for the swimmer to engage the glutes and using the back muscles to get the legs high out of the water.
Ray Looze, Indiana University Head Women’s Swim Coach and the Coach of 5 Big Ten Championships, presents a great demonstration of a Backstroke finish with two of his All-American athletes. The common element in a great finish is to continue kicking until you reach the wall.
The first athlete finishes with a dolphin kick on her last stroke into the wall. This allows an athlete to get one more push for the wall and can mean the difference between taking first or second. The second athlete continues to flutter kick all the way to the wall. Coach Looze explains that one of the common errors in finishing is not keeping your kick going all the way until you actually touch the wall.
14x NCAA All-American, Coley Stickels, presents the Double Look Drill to reinforce the habit of breathing fast with the proper timing and rhythm in the freestyle stroke. The swimmer pushes off the wall and with the pulling arm extended out in front, rotates the head while positioned against the bicep for two quick breaths making sure that the second breath is completed and the head returned to facing downward before the recovery hand enters the water.