PDA

View Full Version : How to prevent groin injury from breaststroke



Superfly
January 4th, 2008, 06:46 AM
Hi all!
I am very greatful for all tips from all of you on how to avoid groin injuries from swimming breaststroke.:toohurt:

I am 37 years old and have been swimming masters now for 3,5 years after a 16 year long break from competitive swimming. I have recently (6 months ago) started to train breaststroke more seriously than before (did IM and fly in the past) but noticed that I was more competitive on the breaststroke than on the other strokes and thought I would give it a go.

My times from last year are 31.2 seconds on 50m breast and 1.09.1 on 100m...I believe I have good potential to lower those times considerably, especially on 100 since I did those times without any previous breaststroke training at all....if I just could get rid of those groin injuries that is...

I train 5-7 swimming practices a week and 1-3 weightlifting practices a week.

All tips are highly appreciated!:notworthy:

Thx!

/Per

tomtopo
January 4th, 2008, 10:01 AM
The following websites may help you develop, add, or simply tweak your strength and stretching regime. I ‘m also a breaststroker and have had a groin problem before but so infrequently I consider it a non-problem. You sound like you’ve got loads of potential and you’re on the right track. If the problem comes back, I think one of the muscle groups in the groin area may be overpowering an opposite muscle group. So, correcting the problem will require you to experiment a little to find the exercise and muscle group that is deficient. Please look at the following list of your leg exercises and try to determine what you’re missing. It may take some time (2-3 weeks) to find which one you’re neglecting but it's time well spent. Please be sure to go slow and take your time because doing too much could aggravate your problem. Good luck to you and good health this New Year. Coach T.

http://exercise.about.com/cs/butthipsthighs/l/bllegsbuttthigh.htm

http://sportsmedicine.about.com/cs/hip_groin/a/hip2.htm

http://www.usaswimming.org/USASWeb/ViewMiscArticle.aspx?TabId=445&Alias=Rainbow&Lang=en&mid=702&ItemId=698

http://www.exrx.net/Lists/ExList/ThighWt.html#anchor1943047

Superfly
January 4th, 2008, 04:47 PM
wow
great links!
Thx!!!

I looked at your invention-video as well. Two questions: Is it worth for a semi-oldtimer to use that paddle as well? Isnt the streamline phase of every push off tricky with that paddle on?

Thx
BR
Per

Blackbeard's Peg
January 4th, 2008, 04:55 PM
I've got three tips for groin injury prevention. Tips 1 & 2 are more like preventative maintenence than anything

1 - stretch before and after practice
2 - regular massages, esp when sore
3 - swim free, back or fly instead :laugh2:

pwolf66
January 4th, 2008, 04:56 PM
Your order is wrong, #3 should be #1

Paul

aztimm
January 4th, 2008, 05:09 PM
How much of your workouts is actually breaststroke? I've never had any groin problems, but have had shoulder problems. When I was actively training for breaststroke, maybe 25% of a 3,000 yard workout was breast, with free, drills, etc filling in the remainder. But then again, I never had times anywhere close to yours (even yard times close to your meter times), so maybe I didn't do nearly enough.

geochuck
January 4th, 2008, 05:17 PM
I have the best solution to the problem, don't swim breaststroke....

Also never stretch cold muscles.

Warren
January 4th, 2008, 05:29 PM
keep the breast stroke to a minumum, only use a breastroke kick in drills and in race pace stuff. Don't do any descend stuff or kick work.

Kurt Dickson
January 4th, 2008, 05:38 PM
Don't do it--it's the slowest most inefficient stroke there is.:bump:

2fish&1whale
January 4th, 2008, 06:40 PM
My entire workout is breast stroke and I find that my biceps hurt before my groin muscles. I'm usualy fine for the first 2000 but after that I throw in more kick board work. You can do drills like sculling and breast stroke w/dolphin kick just to change up the muscles you use in case the kick starts to hurt.

Allen Stark
January 4th, 2008, 08:32 PM
Although I had some groin problems last year,thats unusual for me and I think it can generally be avoided.I worry more about my knees.I am a pure breaststroker and have been competing 45 yrs and I NEVER do more than 500 full stroke in a workout and 200 of that is in my warmup when I start REALLY slowly and slowly build up.You want to be really warmed up to swim BR as it puts alot of strain on the joints.I do a good amount of BR pull/dolphin kick with fins to work on timing and eggbeater kick to work on leg strength and foot speed. I find eggbeater puts less stress on my groin and knees than BR kick.Then stretch after workout. As to those that don't like BR-thats their loss:thhbbb::banana::banana:.

Ripple
January 4th, 2008, 08:37 PM
You could always haunt garage sales until you find that inner thigh exercising thingy that Suzanne Summers used to hawk on late night t.v. What was it called - Thighmaster, something like that?

Superfly
January 5th, 2008, 10:59 AM
How much of your workouts is actually breaststroke? I've never had any groin problems, but have had shoulder problems. When I was actively training for breaststroke, maybe 25% of a 3,000 yard workout was breast, with free, drills, etc filling in the remainder. But then again, I never had times anywhere close to yours (even yard times close to your meter times), so maybe I didn't do nearly enough.

I typically swim 3000-4000m per day. If we have a "sprint day" (more likely to be 3000m total) the normal warm up breast swimming is about 300-400 m slow kicking and 200-400 slow br swimming. Then about 6-8 x 50 all out breast or 4 x 75 or 2 x 100 or 1 x 200 or something with the first one being 80% and then fully all out on the rest. Before I even go into the water I normally do some squatz without weights (10-15) and then jog around the pool and some stretching after that. So I say I have maybe 1/3-1/2 of total distance being breast on a sprint day.

If we have a distance day the warmup is always 200-400 m less warmup and I never ever hurt my groin those days. So the problems only occur when I try to swim really fast.

I have changed my technique rather drastically the last 6 months to 1) be faster (I had a really old school technique from my past that I am know trying to adopt to the new rules) but also 2) to avoid getting my groin hurt all the time...(more narrow kick etc etc) and it works to some extent but I still need to be groin pain free to really be able to train my sprint breast stroke....I cant only go 80% because then I wont be training what I want to be good at...being fast :cry:

/Per

Superfly
January 5th, 2008, 11:01 AM
You could always haunt garage sales until you find that inner thigh exercising thingy that Suzanne Summers used to hawk on late night t.v. What was it called - Thighmaster, something like that?

hahaha..there is a limit to what I am ready to stand up against in form of humiliation from my fellow master swimmers but also my wife...i think i will rather start doing some similar excercises in the gym...thanks anyway!

:)

Superfly
January 5th, 2008, 11:06 AM
...and to all of you that recommend me to switch my stroke I can say only this:

"breaststroke is for swimmers who find the other strokes too easy"

;)

but in real life the fact are the following:
-I reeeaaallly s**k at backstroke
-I hurt my right knee really bad last year in butterfly kicking with fins (leg bent in the wrong way and i had to go out of the pool for 2 months)...this pretty much makes all out free and all out butterfly impossible for the coming year until i dare to go full speed on these strokes again.

/Per

Allen Stark
January 5th, 2008, 11:42 AM
Consider eliminating the breaststroke kicking from your warm up and do more full stroke or eggbeater if you need to. When you do the kick alone you have more acceleration/deceleration which puts more strain on your knees and groin.Also make sure in your kick that you don't kick out at the start after your recovery(I doubt if you are given your times,but that is a common stroke flaw that increases strain on the groin.)

2fish&1whale
January 5th, 2008, 12:09 PM
Consider eliminating the breaststroke kicking from your warm up and do more full stroke or eggbeater if you need to. When you do the kick alone you have more acceleration/deceleration which puts more strain on your knees and groin.Also make sure in your kick that you don't kick out at the start after your recovery(I doubt if you are given your times,but that is a common stroke flaw that increases strain on the groin.)
I agree. I have found that I tire more quickly from the kick only than from the full stroke or stroke only.And when you tire your technique suffers and you are more likely to get injured.Limit how much breast stroke kicking you do with the board since it only works your kick and concentrate more on your stroke/glide/recovery with a dolphin kick or no kick at all.

KaizenSwimmer
January 5th, 2008, 10:54 PM
I don't know if anyone has suggested these, but here are two things to consider.
1) Left to their own devices, most swimmers "overkick" in Breast. Too wide and excessive thrust. A wider kick - both knees and feet usually - increases strain on both groin and knees, while reducing leverage and misdirecting thrust -- out and in, rather than back. Generally when swimmers learn to kick effectively, they feel like they're barely doing anything. It feels far lighter, but they can feel the thrust as far more concentrated.
2) Streamline - really streamline. By reducing frontal resistance, you'll also reduce the load and strain on groin and knees. Focus on two things. Get your head between your shoulders as you thrust. But do so by extending head forward rather than thrusting it down. Second, get your entire bodyline -head too - barely below the surface. No part of your body should be visible at the surface during the glide.

Crazy Asian
January 8th, 2008, 10:10 PM
i am a breaststroker myself.
when doing breaststroke, use some dolphin kicks instead. I don't mean really hard ones, but just lunge your body with your pull, and you should follow that in a dolphin kick position. It helps a lot with your glide and underwater breaststroke movement.

When you kick, keep your knees close together.
during your entire breaststroke race, your knees should never come more than 1 ft apart, and they should aways be closer together than your feet.

Squeeze from the knees instead of the groin. My groin hurt before too, but after i kicked correctly, it went away. But if it's bothering you a lot, rest it for a while.

Well, i don't know how legit my advice is, seeing that i'm only 16, but I think it's what you should do.

and you go 1:09 lcm?
i only go a 1:05 scy, i think when converted, ur time is faster...

geochuck
January 8th, 2008, 10:24 PM
When does this kick become illegal for breaststroke? It almost sounds like a mini dolphin kick.

It sounds legal for old folks butterfrog stroke but not too legal for breaststroke..

swim4fit
January 8th, 2008, 11:12 PM
[quote=Crazy Asian;118813]i am a breaststroker myself.
when doing breaststroke, use some dolphin kicks instead. I don't mean really hard ones, but just lunge your body with your pull, and you should follow that in a dolphin kick position. It helps a lot with your glide and underwater breaststroke movement.
:confused: Is this legal? I was a timer last weekend. I saw a kid swimming breaststroke looks like what u suggested above. He didn't get DQ.

Crazy Asian
January 8th, 2008, 11:18 PM
no no no.....
i don't mean do that in a race.
it's a breaststroke drill that I use instead of breaststroke kick during practice when my knees hurt.

both butterfly and breaststroke has a curve that is started with the pressing of the chest underwater. practicing it with dolphin like form will help you glide and actually accelerate underwater after your kick because you are riding part of your own wave.

2fish&1whale
January 9th, 2008, 08:14 AM
until i figured out how to swim breast stroke correctly i never realized how closely related it was to the fly(and i loathe the fly)-but when you think of it both use a wave motion that suits its self nicely to dolphin kicks

what has me wondering thought is when i see kids at AG practice and they are doing breast stroke arms+flutter kick drills-how can you coordinate those 2 very different movements?

Hooper
January 10th, 2008, 01:51 PM
I, too, am a breaststroker, who returned to swimming after about a 15 year layoff and I'm 36. I started swimming masters about 4 years ago, and over the last 2 I've been tailoring my workouts more to breaststroke than I used to. When I first started doing this, I had some knee pains, and also some groin pain. Usually when this happened, I would cease kicking for a while until the area healed, and then slowly get back at it. Now, I can do half of a 3,000m workout breaststroke, and haven't had any knee or groin pain in almost a year. I think after your body gets used to using these muscles and the general strain that a breaststroke kick puts on the legs, you'll find you have fewer issues.

I think it's been stated already, but warming up VERY slowly with breaststroke, especially the kick is very important, and some stretching will also help, but only when your muscles have warmed up.

Basically, I'm was in the same boat you're in now about a year and a half ago, and I no longer have any issues with training, so keep at it, and you'll be fine, just stop and rest the legs when you experience any pain or soreness...

new
January 11th, 2008, 09:23 PM
Yesterday I got injured on my left knee, I'm not sure if it is from the tough breast kick set I did yesterday or from the weight lifting...

The only thing I know is that I can't swim breaststroke, obviously including 200im and 400im which are my events

It hurts even when I push off the wall, and while stretching, not that much though. Well, I'm not doing any set that involves breaststroke for one week, also I have to change my weight's routine, and stop doing some stretches. :shakeshead:

--------------------------------------Anyway

Talking about the close relationship between fly and breast...Anyone have seen Erik Vendt's breastroke style???

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u3j5pA7tF8Q

He is almost flying; I don't like that style though, mine is closer to phelps style....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oJg8TJnkBuA

2fish&1whale
January 11th, 2008, 10:35 PM
Talking about the close relationship between fly and breast...Anyone have seen Erik Vendt's breastroke style???

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u3j5pA7tF8Q

He is almost flying; I don't like that style though, mine is closer to phelps style....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oJg8TJnkBuA


when you compare the two, watch the elbows - I think that is where you will notice a difference.....

I'm sorry to hear about your knee, I think hurting your knee ranks higher on the breast stroke injury list than the groin muscles :(

Allen Stark
January 11th, 2008, 11:30 PM
Vendt seems to me to have a really unusual pull with very little true insweep.I'd like to get an underwater view of him.

Superfly
January 12th, 2008, 03:53 PM
Vendt seems to me to have a really unusual pull with very little true insweep.I'd like to get an underwater view of him.

This is the best one I could find:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2Npok3wug7E&feature=related
look at it between 44-49 seconds
br
Per