Are Flip-Turns Beneficial When Pool Training?

  • By Sara McLarty
  • Published Jun 11, 2013
  • Updated Oct 9, 2013 at 12:57 AM UTC

Your Twitter questions about swimming as a triathlete, answered by coach Sara McLarty.

Q: My left shoulder is killing me in the pool. Help!

The No. 1 cause of swimming injury is improper technique. Have a knowledgeable coach look at your stroke or have a friend film you from the deck. Look for major causes like crossing the centerline, straight arm pull or recovery, or a slow and controlled recovery.

Q: Are flip-turns beneficial when pool training?

Yes, flip-turns are a great tool for understanding how your body moves and reacts in the water. They’re also beneficial because they help you practice the transition to a streamline position and serve as a hypoxic lung-building exercise.

Q: How do I train with a tempo trainer [Finis swim metronome]?

Experiment with the “Swim Golf” equation (number of strokes + number of seconds per 50) to find your optimum stroke rate. Set the tempo trainer to your stroke rate for open-water events to maintain your optimum swim speed without a pace clock or walls. (Also, see “The Speed Equation” on page 48 for more on this.)

Q: I’m a sinker. What drills can I do for better position?

Practice floating on your stomach. Slightly arch your back to keep feet at the surface. Use small movements with hands and feet to stay horizontal.

Got a swimming problem? Coach Sara wants to help. Just tweet your queries to @SaraLMcLarty.

RELATED – Coach Debate: Do Triathletes Have To Flip-Turn?

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FILED UNDER: Getting Started / Swim / Training

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