Originally Posted by liolio
As my experience grows my opinion changes. I do not think breast is under-rated I think lots of competitive people simply do not care for the slower alternative and that is the end of the line for most.
I still wish for some change in competition, foremost races length as competition is the best incentive for techniques to evolves.
It does require a weird mentality in a competitor to try to be faster than anyone else when doing the slowest of the 4 competitive strokes!
There's also a major aspect to breaststroke that really doesn't exist in the other 3 strokes: There's more that the rules require you to do the wrong way (i.e., contrary to your direction of motion) underwater than in any other stroke. The fact that your elbows have to remain in the water when you're recovering your arms forward, and the fact that you have a kick recovery (which you really don't in any other stroke) means that it's possible to build a lot of momentum with your stroke and kick only to lose a lot of it during the arm and leg recoveries.
Because of all the rules for breaststroke, it's also easier to be DQed on it than on any other stroke. I've only been DQed 5 times in my swimming career, and 4 of those were on breaststroke (2 in breaststroke events and 2 during the breaststroke leg of individual medleys). So I know from experience that it can be pretty discouraging when you're expecting to get a first place and/or a personal best time in an event, only to see a DQ by your name instead of a time and placing. In the other strokes, the object is to see how fast you can swim, while in breaststroke, the object is to see how fast you can swim without being DQed.