Breaststroke: Learn to Tempo Up
BY RUSSELL MARK // HIGH PERFORMANCE CONSULTANT
Five women have been under 2:22 in textile suits. They go out in 1:08-1:09, and come back in 1:11-1:12.
The top 8 women from Trials (excluding Rebecca Soni), generally go out in 1:08-1:09, and come back in an average of 1:16.
The sub-2:22 women tap into a much wider range of tempos throughout their race, dropping their tempos noticeably in the last 100. The top Trials women generally keep their tempo consistent through the race.
Consistent with the men, this supports that breaststrokers need to be able to change gears to find speed at the end of a race. That ability is driven by your technique and emphasis on driving the body, arms, and hands forward; minimal emphasis on pulling a lot of water back (see article).
Check out how the 2 groups differ in 100 splits:
Now check out how different the tempos are throughout the race:
Other than two of Trials women, the tempos stay in a tighter band.