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If you’ve ever watched a swim meet, you know that races are often won or lost at the starts and flip turns. The explosive power and precise technique required for these movements can make all the difference in your swimming.

Whether you’re a competitive swimmer or just looking to improve your skills, mastering your dives (starts) and turns is essential. In this guide, we’ll break down some of the most important drills and techniques to help you elevate your performance in the water.

Drills for Perfecting Your Your Dive

Let’s begin with the start, arguably the most critical phase of any race. A strong start sets the tone for the entire swim, allowing you to carry maximum speed into the water. Here are some drills to help you refine your start technique:

1. Streamline Glide

Before you even step onto the blocks, it’s crucial to practice your streamline off the wall. Push off in a streamlined position and see how far you can glide without kicking. Focus on keeping your elbows in tight to your head and maintaining a tight body position.

2. Cactus Drill

The cactus drill emphasizes getting into streamline quickly and efficiently. From a crouched position on the block, drive your hips back as you extend your arms into streamline. This drill helps improve balance and stability while reinforcing the importance of a strong streamline position.

3. Single Leg Dive

Challenge your balance and stability with the single leg dive drill. Lift one leg off the block before pushing off with the other leg. This drill helps improve strength and coordination while simulating the demands of a real start.

Mastering the Dive

Remember, the key to a successful dive is maintaining a streamlined position throughout. Ensure your body is aligned in the direction you want to go, with your feet pointed and hips over your feet. Avoid common mistakes like belly flopping, by aiming to enter the water through a narrow hole, maximizing efficiency and speed.

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Breath Control

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Drills for Perfecting Your Flipturn

Next, let’s focus on the turn, another crucial aspect of competitive swimming. A well-executed turn can shave valuable seconds off your time, giving you a competitive edge.

You’ll want to time your flip turn to occur when you’re approximately one arm length away from the wall, ensuring optimal positioning and momentum.

Here are some drills to help you master your turns:

1. Somersault Over the Lane Line

Practice your somersault technique by flipping over the lane line with forward momentum. Focus on tucking your head and knees to rotate quickly, maximizing efficiency in your turns.

2. Flip + Kick on Back

Break down the turn into three parts: the approach, the flip turn, and the push off the wall. Practice flipping onto your back and pushing off with powerful kicks, maintaining momentum as you transition into the next lap. Utilize one-arm pulling to tuck into streamline during the turn, maximizing efficiency.

3. 15-Meter 50

Push off the wall, take 2 dolphin kicks, 2 arm strokes – then flip in the middle of the pool! Be sure to keep your body curled up in a tight ball. Race back to the wall and try it again.

Incorporate drills like the 15-Meter 50 to work on speed, agility, and power in a single exercise.

By incorporating these drills and techniques into your training regimen, you can take your swimming starts and turns to the next level. Whether you’re aiming for personal improvement or competing at the highest level, mastering these fundamental skills will undoubtedly propel you toward success in the water.

So dive in, practice diligently, and watch as your performance reaches new heights.

Looking for more swim tips and workout ideas? Download the MySwimPro app for iOS or Android!

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