Proper Butterfly Timing

So, as far as Butterfly timing is concerned, it’s all determined by our kick tempo. And I think this is pretty interesting because I don’t necessarily know if sometimes that’s always taught on the fundamentals, on like an age group program. Since, we are teaching a kid how to swim Butterfly. A lot of times there’s like the survival fly stage when you’re like 8, 9, 10 years old, where it doesn’t matter. You might be dealing with a young girl swimmer who doesn’t have a ton of upper body strength in her swimming butterflies. In this case, it is more like one is coming out and one of them coming in and it’s like she’s just trying hard to complete the stroke versus wondering what the technique looks like. That’s due to two reasons, One, the kick tempo is most likely off, and two, she just doesn’t have enough upper body strength, or he, to complete the stroke. Well, right now, because if you’ve dealt with a swimmer like that or you have a swimmer that looks like that there’s going to be a change. When they gain more strength, which is normally around puberty, you’ll see a big significant change in butterfly technique because nothing changed besides their physiology and maturing as a person. So, when I coach my younger ones because I have a group of like 10 to 12-year-olds what I try to do is when I talk to them about Butterfly is making sure that they’re constantly kicking, the kick never stops, versus trying to work on the arms or get them out of maybe the one arm throw or the half throw that’s lagging. So that they are thinking about Butterfly Kick and not anything else because they’re metronome is kind of the beat of the entire Butterfly stroke. They work on the leg strength, that they’re continuously Dolphin Kicking, but it takes emphasis off of how good does my Butterfly look right now, versus, am I working hard, am I consistently kicking, and where’s my like intention and thought there.

So last month we discussed the Dolphin Kick, Butterfly Kick is the fastest kick out there, and it’s responsible for up to 80% of your short-axis speed. So, in Breaststroke, and Butterfly comes from the kick. So the kick is really important. In fly, you get two kicks per stroke, you get one up at the top when your hands enter up at the very beginning of your pull and then you have one about two-thirds of the way down the pull, equal to a swimmers belly button, or so. If you look at those two kicks, the second one is the most important and it’s normally the one that’s forgotten that it’s the quickest. I was a 200 Butterfly, as I said at the very beginning of this presentation, I did not have a second kick, I had maybe like a baby second kick, and I was convinced that my stroke was the way my stroke was, and any coach that tried to like implement a second kick didn’t know what they were doing. So some people can get away with not having a great second kick and they do a prominent first kick. But the problem is, it does mess up with your stroke timing, and it also doesn’t necessarily allow you to get into a flat body alignment which we’ll see is kind of one of the biggest keys to a great Butterfly because no matter what you’re gonna have to raise the body to get a breath in Butterfly, but you want to make sure that after that you get the body back down. I always felt like from a 200 fly perspective, everybody’s going to end up in that position where they’re kind of crashing into the water and rising and there’s a lot of resistance, but it’s how long can you prolong that position from, A, happening, so you can recover from it well and then, B, once you get there how distinct is that position.