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View Full Version : Do you use high-elbow recovery (freestyle)?



nhc
January 24th, 2010, 07:06 PM
To avoid confusion, here I'm referring to the high-elbow recovery (above water), not the underwater high-elbow catch and pull. It is often said this is important for saving energy etc., but it seems some elite swimmers don't use that. Opinions and poll taking welcome :)

Allen Stark
January 24th, 2010, 07:10 PM
Many of the sprinters are going straight arm,but otherwise it seems to me most of the elites are high elbow.

tomtopo
January 24th, 2010, 09:14 PM
The key to an entry is maximum extension of the hand and an efficient removal of air from the hand. Your coach will tell you if a straight arm recovery is right for you.

When a swimmer enters short, they waste time and a coach may ask them to recover with a straight arm to correct the problem.

A straight arm recovery has been shown to work for sprinters as well as distance swimmers (Janet Evans). So, let your coach watch and help you determine if a straight arm recovery is right for you.

Typhoons Coach
January 25th, 2010, 03:44 PM
The key to an entry is maximum extension of the hand and an efficient removal of air from the hand. Your coach will tell you if a straight arm recovery is right for you.

When a swimmer enters short, they waste time and a coach may ask them to recover with a straight arm to correct the problem.

A straight arm recovery has been shown to work for sprinters as well as distance swimmers (Janet Evans). So, let your coach watch and help you determine if a straight arm recovery is right for you.


Yet again, another post that I agree with Coach T. on! For me, my swimmers go with comfort/efficiency level. If we can find the perfect mix between the two in order to obtain a maximized entry and an early catch then I am good to go.

nhc
January 25th, 2010, 04:08 PM
The key to an entry is maximum extension of the hand and an efficient removal of air from the hand.

When a swimmer enters short, they waste time and a coach may ask them to recover with a straight arm to correct the problem.


What do you mean by "removal of air from the hand", Coach T? Could you explain a little? Also, what has high elbow recovery to do with maximum extension and entry? I thought high elbow simply means that the elbow is high (higher than forearm and other parts of the body) when the arm is up in the air during recovery phase. Both high-elbow and other kinds of recovery could equally produce maximum (or not) extension, or "maximized entry and an early catch" (Typhoons Coach), no?

orca1946
January 25th, 2010, 06:26 PM
I still do not see how a longer arc will beat a shorter one ?

tomtopo
January 26th, 2010, 09:46 AM
The recovery of the arm on freestyle can be bent or straight. The value of a bent arm recovery is indeed speed (fastest / straight line concept). The fact of the matter is that the tempo of the arms must be in sync and because the hand in the water will never be faster than the hand traveling outside the water allows a freestyler the option of a straight arm recovery or bent arm. World record holder Janet Evans and Alan Bernard are great examples of successful straight arm recovery swimmers.

When the hand enters the water incorrectly, air is trapped on tha palm and is counter productive to propulsion. When I watch a swimmer in any stroke and see white (air) during the entry and it's a significant amount, red flags go up and I know it's something I should have them correct. So, if your entry is clean and extended, I'm not focusing on the entry as something that needs corrrecting.

Now, there are many other things I look at when watching a recovery. It's the reaction / opposite reaction concept that coaches key on when looking at recovery and entries.

I hope that answers your question. Good luck, Coach T.

nhc
January 26th, 2010, 03:49 PM
Thanks for the explanations, Coach T.! I see now what you mean by removing air from hand. I do feel swimming much better when using high elbow. I feel it helps the rotation. To make sure I got the other point you mentioned: do you mean, by "maximum extension", that the hand entry be as far as possible? i.e. to avoid entering the water too close so that it becomes slapping through the water ?

tomtopo
February 4th, 2010, 09:28 AM
I've seen many world class distance and sprint swimmers look like they're slapping the water but with that said it comes down to what happens to the hand as it enters. In one breath I can tell one swimmer to exit bent armed while telling another to start straight arm his entry. So, slapping isn't pretty but if they clear the air efficiently I'm okay with it. I hope that answers your question.

Karen Duggan
February 4th, 2010, 04:11 PM
My freestyle is ugly and slow (compared to my age group).
I gave up awhile ago on focusing on a high elbow. I have no bubbles on my hands on my entry, have a forward hand entry near the surface (no crossing the center line), and am working on a high elbow underwater to make my catch more efficient.

For me the high elbow just makes it look pretty. It doesn't seem to help my efficiency at all.

:2cents:

*the preceding is a post from a non-freestyler- read with caution :D

nhc
February 5th, 2010, 07:37 PM
Thank you, Coach T. I'm still not sure what you mean by "maximum extension". Does it refer to how far the hand will be after full extension, or from how far the hand enters the water?

tomtopo
February 6th, 2010, 08:24 PM
Thank you, Coach T. I'm still not sure what you mean by "maximum extension". Does it refer to how far the hand will be after full extension, or from how far the hand enters the water?

I simply meant stretch your arm until it's fully extended. A good reach promotes a streamlined position. Hope this helps. Coach T.

nhc
February 6th, 2010, 09:00 PM
I simply meant stretch your arm until it's fully extended. A good reach promotes a streamlined position. Hope this helps. Coach T.

I see. I had thought the high-elbow recovery helps with rotation, but didn't know it also helps with reaching to maximum extension. Thanks :)