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Teaching Butterfly



 
 
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  #1  
Old February 22nd 08, 05:00 PM posted to rec.sport.swimming
Steve Freides
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Posts: 2,029
Default Teaching Butterfly

I've posted this before, but I continue to be impressed with the results
I'm getting so I figured it was worth a thread of its own. This is how
I teach butterfly to 7-12 year old kids at my local YMCA. No, I didn't
create/invent this; it's how I was taught fly as an adult, and it worked
so well for me, I tried it with my kids and it's worked wonders for
them, too.

The key teaching point is that timing is the most important thing in
learning fly. I get many kids from other swim teachers who have learned
to do two kicks and _then_ pull with their arms, and that's not right.

We do a lap (one length) of a fly drill followed by a length of
backstroke on the way back. We also use long swim fins for _all_ of
this, which makes it much easier to get the timing correct. I have
found the timing will stay when you take off the fins, but if you can't
get the timing right, you're nowhere.

1 - Dolphin kick - arms wherever you like them, breath however you like.
Purpose - be sure the kick involves the whole body. I teach chest down,
butt up, then snap like a whip, bringing the hips down and the chest up,
and letting the legs follow the hips motion rather than trying to bend
the knees. The class level before mine is supposed to teach dolphin
kick but it doesn't hurt to review this every week.

2. Dolphin kick in streamlined position - hand outstretched in front,
and begin the timing by requiring a breath every two kicks, no
exceptions. Breath any way you like, e.g., to the front, to the side,
like breast stroke, whatever.

3. One-arm butterfly - same as previous step except that you pull with
one arm while the other stays outstretched in front of you. Same
timing - you must breath every two kicks, but however you like other
than that, e.g., to the front or to the side. You may switch arms if
fatigued, but the position is always either one arm or both arms
outstretched in front, never both arms at your sides.

4. Two-arm butterfly - the full stroke. If the other steps have been
done well, there will still be the issue of pulling the arms back fast
enough, and then returning them to the front fast enough, but that
should be all that's left to teach. Timing remains the same, breathing
every two strokes.

I know this isn't rocket science, but I continue to be impressed with
how well it works so I thought it was worth a posting here for anyone
either teaching themselves or teaching others. I only test them without
long fins when required to, which is once every 8 weeks, and otherwise
we do all our fly training in long fins. My Y didn't have them, so I
went out and bought a pile of kid-sized long fins and donated them to
the Y, and they're kept in locked closet next to the pool.

Comments invited, of course.

-S-


  #2  
Old February 23rd 08, 03:24 AM posted to rec.sport.swimming
[email protected]
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Posts: 55
Default Teaching Butterfly

On Fri, 22 Feb 2008 11:00:14 -0500, "Steve Freides"
wrote:



I get many kids from other swim teachers who have learned
to do two kicks and _then_ pull with their arms, and that's not right.


I see a lot of kids swimming fly in meets where they may kick seven or
eight times before they do an arm pull. I always wonder what the heck
coaches are doing putting kids in that event when they obviously
aren't ready. Or they put them in a 100 meter fly when they can
barely due the 50 with good form.

Dave Clary
Corpus Christi, TX
  #4  
Old February 24th 08, 03:34 AM posted to rec.sport.swimming
[email protected]
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Posts: 55
Default Teaching Butterfly

On Sat, 23 Feb 2008 13:18:49 -0500, "Steve Freides"
wrote:

wrote in message
...
On 23 Feb,
wrote:

I see a lot of kids swimming fly in meets where they may kick seven
or
eight times before they do an arm pull.


You are allowed to do 15metres underwater after the start and after
turns. It
is faster and less energy consuming with an efficient kick, and so is
encouraged. Once on the surface you must remain there.

--
BD
Change lycos to yahoo to reply


Agreed. Those are kids who know the stroke just fine; they are doing
what they're doing by choice, it's within the rules, and it's all good
in that context, especially when they're swimming 50 or more yards of
fly. I almost never have my kids do more than one lap of our 25-yard
pool.

-S-
http://www.kbnj.com


I'm not talking about the start--they are swimming this way after the
start (on the surface). Yep, it's legal since there is no sequence
requirement like there is in breast stroke. But I still think there
are kids put in fly events that just aren't ready and should be
working on it more.

Dave Clary
Corpus Christi, TX
  #5  
Old February 24th 08, 04:08 AM posted to rec.sport.swimming
Steve Freides
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 2,029
Default Teaching Butterfly

wrote in message
...
On Sat, 23 Feb 2008 13:18:49 -0500, "Steve Freides"
wrote:

wrote in message
...
On 23 Feb,
wrote:

I see a lot of kids swimming fly in meets where they may kick seven
or
eight times before they do an arm pull.

You are allowed to do 15metres underwater after the start and after
turns. It
is faster and less energy consuming with an efficient kick, and so
is
encouraged. Once on the surface you must remain there.

--
BD
Change lycos to yahoo to reply


Agreed. Those are kids who know the stroke just fine; they are doing
what they're doing by choice, it's within the rules, and it's all good
in that context, especially when they're swimming 50 or more yards of
fly. I almost never have my kids do more than one lap of our 25-yard
pool.

-S-
http://www.kbnj.com


I'm not talking about the start--they are swimming this way after the
start (on the surface). Yep, it's legal since there is no sequence
requirement like there is in breast stroke. But I still think there
are kids put in fly events that just aren't ready and should be
working on it more.

Dave Clary
Corpus Christi, TX


I guess we're not getting what you're talking about here, Dave. You're
saying after they come to the surface, their butterfly form is incorrect
in that they're doing too many kicks for each pull? If that's so, then
I agree with you, they shouldn't be in the meet. Mind you, I don't mind
if they don't breath every stroke - I only breath every other stroke -
but they should have the basic mechanics/timing down before someone puts
them in a competition.

-S-
http://www.kbnj.com



  #6  
Old February 24th 08, 08:54 AM posted to rec.sport.swimming
Robert W. McAdams
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Posts: 135
Default Teaching Butterfly

wrote:
On Fri, 22 Feb 2008 11:00:14 -0500, "Steve Freides"
wrote:




I get many kids from other swim teachers who have learned
to do two kicks and _then_ pull with their arms, and that's not right.



I see a lot of kids swimming fly in meets where they may kick seven or
eight times before they do an arm pull. I always wonder what the heck
coaches are doing putting kids in that event when they obviously
aren't ready. Or they put them in a 100 meter fly when they can
barely due the 50 with good form.

Dave Clary
Corpus Christi, TX


I suspect that what happens may be the following:

The team is in a dual meet and the coach doesn't have enough swimmers in
a particular age group who are really ready to do a certain event. But
he does have one or two swimmers who, he feels confident, can go the
distance without getting DQed. So he puts them in to fill the empty lanes.

This can be a particularly effective strategy if the other team is also
short on qualified swimmers and opts to leave lanes unfilled for that
reason. His team may succeed in picking up, say, a third place simply
because one of his unqualified swimmers goes the distance, however slowly.

I remember a friend of mine getting put into a distance freestyle event
in a high school swim meet, in spite of the fact that he wasn't a
distance swimmer, simply because not enough of the team's distance
swimmers were there that day. This move wasn't terribly bright, IMO,
because my friend took a distant last place and therefore didn't score
any points for the team, but the coach proably figured that he had
nothing to lose by doing it.


Bob

  #7  
Old February 26th 08, 06:26 AM posted to rec.sport.swimming
[email protected]
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Posts: 55
Default Teaching Butterfly

On Sat, 23 Feb 2008 22:08:15 -0500, "Steve Freides"
wrote:


I guess we're not getting what you're talking about here, Dave. You're
saying after they come to the surface, their butterfly form is incorrect
in that they're doing too many kicks for each pull?


Yep, that's what I mean. It's legal, but it ain't butterfly!! :-)
It's like high school letting backstrokers turn early and kick/glide
into the wall. It's supposed to be backstroke, dang it. I'm hoping
they will come around to the FINA/USS way of thinking on that one
soon.

Dave
  #8  
Old February 26th 08, 06:32 AM posted to rec.sport.swimming
[email protected]
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Posts: 55
Default Teaching Butterfly

On Sun, 24 Feb 2008 02:54:27 -0500, "Robert W. McAdams"
wrote:

I suspect that what happens may be the following:

The team is in a dual meet and the coach doesn't have enough swimmers in
a particular age group who are really ready to do a certain event. But
he does have one or two swimmers who, he feels confident, can go the
distance without getting DQed. So he puts them in to fill the empty lanes.


A very plausible scenario but it's not what I'm describing. These are
USA Swimmng meets with mutliple teams, and the teams entering the
psuedo-butterfliers aren't in contention for any team title.

I'll have an interesting Friday--probably starting a few heats of
short course 1650s. I love counting laps!! (not) :-)

Dave
  #9  
Old February 26th 08, 10:44 AM posted to rec.sport.swimming
_
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Posts: 102
Default Teaching Butterfly

On Mon, 25 Feb 2008 23:26:39 -0600, wrote:

On Sat, 23 Feb 2008 22:08:15 -0500, "Steve Freides"
wrote:


I guess we're not getting what you're talking about here, Dave. You're
saying after they come to the surface, their butterfly form is incorrect
in that they're doing too many kicks for each pull?


Yep, that's what I mean. It's legal, but it ain't butterfly!! :-)
It's like high school letting backstrokers turn early and kick/glide
into the wall. It's supposed to be backstroke, dang it. I'm hoping
they will come around to the FINA/USS way of thinking on that one
soon.

Dave


You cannot kick and glide into the turn:

"Here is the official Fina Technical Swimming Committee interpretation on
rule SW 6.4.

* The only new rule change in Backstroke is that the toes no longer
need to be under the surface of the water at the start.
* When judging the backstroke turn, officials must consider SW 6.2 and
SW 6.4 together. Swimmers must swim on the back throughout the race.
There is only one exception when a swimmer can be beyond the 90 degree
vertical, and that is when they are executing the turn as set forth in SW
6.4. At that time, the judge should focus on the swimmers hands to see
that a turn is ´initiatedˇ with a downward motion. If not, we are dealing
with an ´extended layoutˇ infraction. A swimmer is not turning if one or
both arms are simply extended in front of him/her, or simply at the
swimmer˙s side.
* Other backstroke turns, such as the so-called ´suicideˇ turn, or a
´saucerˇ turn, are both executed while still on the back without the
shoulders passing the 90 degrees vertical prior to the touch.
* Kicking is acceptable if it is part of the continuous turning action.
The swimmer must be observed in total.
* Turning from Back to Breast too far from the wall, and kicking to
make up the distance to begin the turn, is illegal. Kicking as part of the
turn is legal."
  #10  
Old February 26th 08, 04:13 PM posted to rec.sport.swimming
_
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Posts: 102
Default Teaching Butterfly

On Tue, 26 Feb 2008 09:44:50 GMT, _ wrote:

On Mon, 25 Feb 2008 23:26:39 -0600, wrote:

On Sat, 23 Feb 2008 22:08:15 -0500, "Steve Freides"
wrote:


I guess we're not getting what you're talking about here, Dave. You're
saying after they come to the surface, their butterfly form is incorrect
in that they're doing too many kicks for each pull?


Yep, that's what I mean. It's legal, but it ain't butterfly!! :-)
It's like high school letting backstrokers turn early and kick/glide
into the wall. It's supposed to be backstroke, dang it. I'm hoping
they will come around to the FINA/USS way of thinking on that one
soon.

Dave


You cannot kick and glide into the turn:

"Here is the official Fina Technical Swimming Committee interpretation on
rule SW 6.4.

* The only new rule change in Backstroke is that the toes no longer
need to be under the surface of the water at the start.
* When judging the backstroke turn, officials must consider SW 6.2 and
SW 6.4 together. Swimmers must swim on the back throughout the race.
There is only one exception when a swimmer can be beyond the 90 degree
vertical, and that is when they are executing the turn as set forth in SW
6.4. At that time, the judge should focus on the swimmers hands to see
that a turn is ´initiatedˇ with a downward motion. If not, we are dealing
with an ´extended layoutˇ infraction. A swimmer is not turning if one or
both arms are simply extended in front of him/her, or simply at the
swimmer˙s side.
* Other backstroke turns, such as the so-called ´suicideˇ turn, or a
´saucerˇ turn, are both executed while still on the back without the
shoulders passing the 90 degrees vertical prior to the touch.
* Kicking is acceptable if it is part of the continuous turning action.
The swimmer must be observed in total.
* Turning from Back to Breast too far from the wall, and kicking to
make up the distance to begin the turn, is illegal. Kicking as part of the
turn is legal."


Oooops - I missed that you were referring to the backwater of US
high-school swimming. What other "special" rules do they have?
 




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