Combos – Lower Body

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While the kick itself may only make up 10-20% the swim power for fly, back, and freestyle strokes, it can also make us much slower until we learn to kick properly for each of our strokes and underwater dolphins. It is easy for swimmers of all levels to ignore their kick technique and allow it to hinder their swim speed until they quit swimming completely. In our Train Savage program for Lower Body we find it easy to combine ‘Cardio’ approaches to our kick technique but we are separating these 2 issues so we can highlight how the ‘Lower Body’ circuits are also focused on the quality of our kicking techniques and not just our cardio system.

Whenever focusing on the Lower Body we are really trying to rebuild the ‘muscle memory’ or the proper order of engagement of our kicking muscles. For Free, Back and Fly kicking we must start with finding ways to engage from the glute muscles FIRST in order not rely on ‘knee kicking’. So we focus a lot on our kick recovery muscles as this is something that we do not engage the same when we run, walk, bike and other exercises so it is our most neglected aspect of our Lower Body training. Just like for our Upper Body sessions, we like to connect dryland sessions that allow us to focus on technique (glute engagement, straighten knees, and straightened ankles) and then connect that to in-water sessions that reinforce the same technique and effort.

Digging Deeper with Articles on this topic:

Combined In-Water + Dryland Circuit Examples:

  • We love 0.2 tempo kicking by using the headset and a metronome. Here we blend in-water training with our Dryland Kicking Assembly to improve their technique. The kicking assembly helps improve the elongated knees and ankles and builds the recovery muscles (glutes)
  • Products Used: Dryland Kicking Assembly, Headsets

In-Water Only Examples:

  • Simple but effective use of headsets and a metronome app to control the effort of a kick set
  • Products Used: Headsets

Dryland-Only Examples:

Circuit Components (Ideas to help Build your own):

  • Dryland Kicking Assembly
  • Kicking physio ball
  • Jumping rope
  • High stepping to kick bag
  • Running planks on bosu ball (or similar)
  • Jump Squats (in Streamline)
  • Squat under resistance (dive block?)
  • Vertical Jumps (measure height each time)
  • Squat jumps on TRS
  • Single Leg Jumps on TRS
  • Frog Jumps on TRS

In Water

  • 0.2 Tempo kicking
  • Fins
  • Ankle Weights
  • Power bags on calves
  • Power Bags on feet
  • Power bags on feet, over fins
  • FlexRights
  • Single Ankle Buoys
  • Vertical Jumps in Streamline (shooters)