Fine Tune a Bilateral Undulation

The Eel-Fin: Developing Kick Recovery Muscles

  • Arguably the one of the most important ways to improve the 5th stroke (underwater undulations) is with the recovery
  • As young swimmers we learn to move forward with only a powerful down kick, and do little to power our recovery
  • In our ‘Recovery Muscle’ link below we provide many drills and methods to help develop the recovery muscles

Feedback (Swimmers FEEL / Coaches SEE / Video for Self-Analysis):

  • If you are not FEELING the force of pulling your feet back UP on these drills, you are not likely doing it correctly
  • You will need to FEEL less down power with less knee bend from your normal kick to set up a true recovery

The Eel-Fin: Underwater Bi-lateral Undulation
Training with the Eel-Fin

The quick version of our link is:

  • Start with the Lil’ Red Kick at the far position from the feet, tell the swimmers to swim (ON THEIR SIDE) ‘Big Eel’ with the largest undulations they can make (trying to use the entire lane)
  • Once they feel the undulations forward and back and use the weight as a ‘pendulum’, they move the weight to mid-point on the Eel-Fin and have them ‘feel’ the tempo of the ‘pendulum’ (which will be faster this time). Again, ONLY on their side at this point
  • Next move the weight as close to their feet as possible and have them feel fast undulations
  • Then add undulations with the weight in the ‘fast’ position on the back (facing up)
  • Last add ‘belly down’ undulations (best to close the eyes so they don’t go back to old habits)

Feedback (Swimmers FEEL / Coaches SEE / Video for Self-Analysis):

  • The weight on the Eel-Fin will force an equal undulation front and back… if you ignore the ‘FEEL’ of the weight it will be very awkward and jerk a lot.
  • WAIT until you FEEL the fin finish fully forward and fully backward before you change direction of the kick
  • Be sure you are leading your undulations from the ‘rib hinge’ and not just with the knees