View Full Version : Pulling

March 31st, 2003, 05:11 AM
Is pulling still recommended? If so, with what type of equipment and what kind of drills? I've read conflicting views on this; one article in Swim a few years back implied that pulling (with paddles) was a good way to end up in the orthopedist's office with a shoulder problem.

jean sterling
March 31st, 2003, 12:10 PM
I have read that much use of paddles can cause shoulder problems, so I pretty much stay away from them.

March 31st, 2003, 04:32 PM
I can attest to the strain that paddles put on shoulders. I later read that one should not use paddles while training until you have been swimming consistently for 1 year.

April 2nd, 2003, 08:58 PM
I use paddles just once in a while. I use the trainer paddles. Not the bigger ones I use in swimming back in the 1970's.

April 3rd, 2003, 08:48 AM
I don't do too much pulling, mostly because I don't have much time for training and prefer to do plain old swimming rather than pulling or kicking.

I do like to do some sprint breastroke pulls. (I'm a breaststroker.)

It is my understanding that distance swimmers like to do some long pull sets and some hypoxic pull sets, but such sets were never a major part of my training even as a HS and college swimmer.

Swim fast,

April 3rd, 2003, 12:23 PM
Pulling was routine in high school and college, and I continued to do pull sets until a few years ago when I developed a nice case of tendonitis (supraspinatus?) in my shoulder. I've read the seven minute rotator cuff solution and corrected my stroke (I was internally rotating the shoulder on freestyle, with my thumb entering first), but I've not resumed pulling. Of course I'd always used the old style of paddles (the rectangular yellow Speedo paddles). I'm just wondering what the current thinking is.

By the way, Celebrex is a great drug.

Bill Feesh
April 3rd, 2003, 02:09 PM
I swim 3 days per week and I use paddles on all days.
I feel that they help to refine my stroke as I use them.
For instance: As my hands enter the water I can "feel" how my entry is to the water, reminding me to keep them streamlined upon entry. Also as I pull through the water (not race speed) I can feel if my hands are slipping through the stroke. Which helps me to correct this and to pull more effectively.
I understand some people have shoulder or back (or whatever) problems but I think that paddles are a great tool for us swimmers to use, when used slow and steady. :cool:

P.S. Good Luck at Nationals

April 8th, 2003, 08:00 PM
Your best bet is to start with small paddles and gradually build up your yardage using them. When you feel comfortable using the smallies, grab a size bigger and so on....

I have a bad back but have had no problems using paddles. If you compete, using paddles a few days before a meet help you work hard, but stay clear of sprinting---saving your strength.

Good luck pulling...just don't pull anything out of place.

April 27th, 2003, 11:18 PM
I swim Masters in Japan and used to compete in the US. I also coach military youth teams here in Japan as time permits. I am a strong believer in the use of pulling, with or without paddles. As noted by many others, risk of overuse injury is an issue, so select paddles carefully. I have at least 4 pair and alternate as appropriate. No paddles for breast, small paddles for fly, medium for back and largest for free. I even have a drag parachute for those boring summer long course days. Having said the above, I'd add that I do not pull (stop immediately) if any pain. I also use paddles for stroke, efficiency, recovery and those 3/5/7 alternate breathing sets. I never use them to sprint. I find the most value in using paddles on a longer (8 x 300) set for the purpose of cardiovascular conditioning. This "trains" me to swim faster and longer while maintaining a lower heart rate. A follow-up set without the paddles (or even with just a pull buoy) can further emphasize this. Just my thoughts and experience.