USA Swimming News

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

GoSwim Video of the Week: Butterfly - Second Kick

GoSwim Video of the Week: Butterfly - Second Kick

To swim really fast butterfly. You have to take advantage of every opportunity for propulsion. The place that most swimmers ignore this opportunity is the second kick. Misty Hyman in her video said it best. I kick my hands in and I kick my hands out. The focus on the second kick helped her to an Olympic gold medal. But how many of us are going to be swimming like Misty OK.

Probably only a couple people over the world in the next few years. But it shouldn’t mean we all can’t take advantage of what she does to make ourselves faster.


Why do it:

Learning to use the second kick him butterfly better will help you achieve your fastest speed.


How to do it:

We’re actually going to incorporate three drills into one but focusing on the hips and the feet. This is a cool thing about drills even though they’re initially created to solve one problem. They can usually be used to focus on a few. The drills will be using our single-arm butterfly. Butter free. And then leaving the wall with a strong underwater dolphin into two strokes with no breathing.

To really work on this. We’re going to do 75s.

On the first lap, the swimmers perform single on butterfly focusing their attention on the second kick or kicking their hands out of the water. By using only one arm. The swimmers are able to accomplish this without having their strokes fall apart.

The next 25 is butter free, a mixture of freestyle arm strokes with a dolphin-like body movement. This again allows the swimmers the opportunity to focus on the second kick rather than struggling to the other end. This drill begins to better introduce more rhythm into the mix.

Finally, the last length in the 75 starts with the swimmers performing 4 underwater dolphins. This is to make sure they’re focusing on their feet and then go directly into two strokes with no breathing focusing their attention on the second kick or kicking their hands out.


How to do it really well, the fine points:

Allowing the swimmers to spend much of their time drilling rather than swimming gives them the opportunity to really pinpoint where that second kick needs to come in. This is as much a mental exercise as a physical one.

For those swimmers who have worked on developing a single kick fly so they can swim and easier 200. It’s fine to be able to accomplish something but swimming is still about fitness and swimming fast in order to reach one’s potential. A second fly kick is usually needed. While there have even been some great swimmers who’ve done tremendous things with a single kick, the majority of champions use a second kick, so it’s worth working on.

When you’re really having a tough time implementing this, here’s an easy little trick that should work well for you. Using stretch cords will require that you use the second kick or you simply won’t make it to the other end. Sure it’s a bit tougher. But you can see that when our swimmer uses a small second kick she doesn’t make it. By using the larger second kick she not only learns to swim faster but accomplishes a goal in practice which makes her feel good after the pain subsides.

To watch more videos on the butterfly kick, click here -

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