View Full Version : Front Quadrant Backstroke

Phil M.
June 15th, 2003, 04:11 PM
Do we have any backstrokers out there that swim with a catch-up type of stroke? I have read that Lenny K. doesn't start his pull until his recovering arm is straight up. Does this sound correct? I have tried this technique in practice but it does not feel rhythmic at all.

Phil Arcuni
June 15th, 2003, 04:39 PM
This is the way I like to swim and I use several drills to keep my stroke that way. I feel it forces my hips up and improves my streamline. While I swim I concentrate on not pulling until my hand indeed passes above my shoulder - my pulling hand does get in position for the 'catch' before that, however. Also, it is important to recover quickly, without the hand waiting by the hips, especially while sprinting.

June 15th, 2003, 08:06 PM
This method of delaying the pull until the recovering arm is well on its way also keeps the body roll coordinated with the arm movements and makes the whole stroke more efficient. So many people stroke the arm before the body starts rolling.

June 16th, 2003, 05:21 PM

I think I may have come across the same article that describes the front quadrant aspect to Lenny's stroke. As a fellow backstroker I was intrigued about how this was done, and have studied a few video clips of him in action. It appears from frame to frame that what he is really doing is reaching and rolling. (I find this to be a good mantra while doing repeats by the way.)

So it seems that as long as one has a good roll, and stays on their side during the pull phase it's very easy to maintain a "front quadrant" approach to the stroke. The recovery arm is fast on its way to the 'twelve noon' position before the catch has really gotten underway. By 'one or two o'clock' on the recovery arm, the pull phase has gone into the push cycle. I think Mr. Arcuni and Janis both have a very good take on how this is done.