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  #1  
Old 09-22-2010
millertime millertime is offline
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millertime
Default backstroke breakthrough!

After a couple months of gradually improving my backstroke (by doing the backstroke drills from "Backstroke for Every Body"), I surprised myself today at the pool with a dramatic jump in my backstroke ability.

I noticed I was kicking less frequently and less hard than I usually do. I figured that my balance must be a lot better now, meaning that I no longer need to use my kick to keep me horizontal in the water. At this point, I resolved to take my kicking down yet further, into a 2-beat-kick. After a couple laps of practicing, I got my legs down to just one pulse per arm stroke.

Not only that, but the timing of the 2bk that I happened upon aided my body rotation and gave me the sense of connecting my legs thru my core to my arms (just like a 2bk does in freestyle). Here's the timing that I landed upon today: when my pulling arm is halfway through it's pull, I kick with the opposite leg. This action, in combination with the pulling of the arm and the momentum of the recovering arm falling back into the water, created a sense of powerfully moving into a "skating" position on the other side.

Using this stroke, I felt much smoother in the water, and that I was using a lot less energy. If I wasn't swimming in a 90F pool, I probably could've gone continuously for a long time with this new stroke. Sometime soon, I'll try to post some video of my new backstroke.
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Old 09-22-2010
jeverett jeverett is offline
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hey there millertime...i hope you can post a video soon! i have also been experimenting with a 2 beat kick but haven't established one that is consistent. i've tried a quick flutter kick as well as a kind of pulsed kick, but like the idea of a well timed 2 beat kick. mostly my kick is pretty leisurely, i don't seem to need to kick much and can swim backstroke for pretty long. i have really been enjoying backstroke since getting the dvd in january and
i'm excited to try out your new findings!
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  #3  
Old 06-24-2011
dzhou01 dzhou01 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by millertime View Post
After a couple months of gradually improving my backstroke (by doing the backstroke drills from "Backstroke for Every Body"), I surprised myself today at the pool with a dramatic jump in my backstroke ability.

I noticed I was kicking less frequently and less hard than I usually do. I figured that my balance must be a lot better now, meaning that I no longer need to use my kick to keep me horizontal in the water. At this point, I resolved to take my kicking down yet further, into a 2-beat-kick. After a couple laps of practicing, I got my legs down to just one pulse per arm stroke.

Not only that, but the timing of the 2bk that I happened upon aided my body rotation and gave me the sense of connecting my legs thru my core to my arms (just like a 2bk does in freestyle). Here's the timing that I landed upon today: when my pulling arm is halfway through it's pull, I kick with the opposite leg. This action, in combination with the pulling of the arm and the momentum of the recovering arm falling back into the water, created a sense of powerfully moving into a "skating" position on the other side.

Using this stroke, I felt much smoother in the water, and that I was using a lot less energy. If I wasn't swimming in a 90F pool, I probably could've gone continuously for a long time with this new stroke. Sometime soon, I'll try to post some video of my new backstroke.
Hi Millertime,

I want to practice 2b kick backstroke according to what you described. Is it correct that when my left arm pulls, my left foot should kick upward and at the same time my right arm finishes recovery and drops into water?
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Old 07-05-2011
uncoondoxDuex uncoondoxDuex is offline
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uncoondoxDuex
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What words...
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  #5  
Old 09-16-2011
bx bx is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by millertime View Post
when my pulling arm is halfway through it's pull, I kick with the opposite leg.
+1 for wanting to see video of your stroke. Did you try both sides for the kick, and found the opposite side to the pull to be more effective? I can't do 2bk at all in BS yet, though.
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  #6  
Old 09-17-2011
Richardsk Richardsk is offline
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It's nice to hear of backstroke breakthroughs. As one who swims backstroke considerably faster with a pull buoy and no kick at all, I can appreciate that an ineffective kick can slow you down. I have tried the two-beat and even a dolphin kick, but so far the six-beat has proved best for full-stroke swimming for me. It would be interesting to do a series of tests with various kinds of kicks, including no kick at all, and with various stroke rates for the arms. I may start today.
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Old 09-17-2011
bx bx is offline
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Richard, a dolphin kick with BS sounds very interesting - must give that a go - I can sort of imagine how that would feel, timing the leg flick with the "pull" (=push). I'm a recent BS convert (though haven't got the TI DVD) and it really does make a nice relaxing change after FS. I'm just windmilling my arms with some body roll for now, but really enjoy it. I go at it with some gusto - everyone else I see doing BS (invariably women for some reason, in my pool) swim it very very slowly and precisely!
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Old 09-17-2011
Richardsk Richardsk is offline
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Hi bx

I started my experimental backstroke program today. First I swam several repeats of 25m with a pull buoy. Then I swam some without the pull buoy and no kick. At first it was a lot slower but after a few tries I managed to raise the hips and feet a little and got a bit closer to the pull buoy time, but not really very close.

Then I tried some two beat, but that didn't really work very well.

I will continue experimenting over the next few weeks and report on progress.
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  #9  
Old 09-19-2011
wisswim wisswim is offline
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You basically do the same as in freestyle except upside down. That is, kick up (toward the sky) with your left foot as your right hand enters the water. You have to play with the timing to get it to work.

It doesn't seem to work very well to have a 2 beat backstroke kick for a "working stroke." I do like to use the 2 beat kick for relaxation purposes and I think it does help me to have a more balanced stroke when I go to 6 beats.

Whether it is freestyle or backstroke, trying to synchronize a 6 beat kick is more than my brain can handle. I just figure that if my brain is engrained with the timing of the 2 beat kick, the 6 beat will be balanced also.
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