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Thread: In what order have you learned the different strokes?

  1. #1
    Very Active Member ddl's Avatar
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    In what order have you learned the different strokes?

    Of the 4 main strokes, is it safe to assume most people learned the breaststroke first? It seems to me the easiest to learn and was my first. Perhaps bufferfly is the last to be learned for most people?

    Or maybe I'm not quite right?

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    Re: In what order have you learned the different strokes?

    I think most people learn front crawl first, as it is probably the easiest stroke to both learn and perform (left arm, right arm, left arm, right arm). Proper breaststroke is more difficult to learn, as timing is very important to success in the stroke, as are a number of minute details that can have profound effects on your efficiency. That said, I also started with breaststroke. Maybe breaststrokers are just weird.

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    Very Active Member RobbieD's Avatar
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    Re: In what order have you learned the different strokes?

    I started with freestyle, backstroke, really bad breast stroke that hasn't really gotten much better and finally butterfly.

    When I taught swim lessons I started kids with elementary backstroke then sidestroke and if they stuck with it long enough we got them freestyling.

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    Very Active Member Allen Stark's Avatar
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    Re: In what order have you learned the different strokes?

    I learned crawl first,then side stroke and elementary back stroke.I was never really taught breaststroke,I just did it.(Given how they taught BR in the 50s that is probably just as well.)I didn't learn BK until I joined the swim team at 14 and fly shortly there after.
    "To strive,to seek,to find,and not to yield" Tennyson
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    Very Active Member david.margrave's Avatar
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    Re: In what order have you learned the different strokes?

    From my times, I think you could argue that I never really learned backstroke or breaststroke.

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    Very Active Member aquageek's Avatar
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    Re: In what order have you learned the different strokes?

    Breast is the stroke of last resort. Only attempt it after failing at the other three, or if drowning.

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    Re: In what order have you learned the different strokes?

    I taught myself, more or less, and I learned breastroke, crawl, backstroke, and I don't think that's an unusual order.

    I swam breastroke till I got used to breathing only when my head is out of the water. Then I started learning the crawl.

    Backstroke was later because you have to learn to go in a straight line before you can share a lane. That means you have fewer opportunities to practice.

    As for fly, well if God had wanted me to fly . . .He'd have given me flexibility, coordination and upper body strength.

    If you learn at the Y, as most Americans do, it's crawl, backstroke, breastroke, fly. I'm told Europeans learn breast first. Perhaps someone else can confirm that.
    Young for my speed. . .

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    Tough like a donut
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    Re: In what order have you learned the different strokes?

    For the competitive strokes I learned them in this order:

    Free
    Back
    Fly
    Breast - I just could not get my feet turned outward until I was about 10.

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    Very Active Member ddl's Avatar
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    Re: In what order have you learned the different strokes?

    It has always puzzled me why many people think breaststroke is hard to learn or hard to swim well. It seems to me much simpler than the other 3 strokes. What would be considered a bad breaststroke?

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    Re: In what order have you learned the different strokes?


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    Very Active Member aquageek's Avatar
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    Re: In what order have you learned the different strokes?

    Quote Originally Posted by ddl View Post
    What would be considered a bad breaststroke?
    Mine

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    Very Active Member ddl's Avatar
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    Re: In what order have you learned the different strokes?

    Quote Originally Posted by mjgold View Post
    LOL That's very funny. But in such cases you just have to tell the person to flatten down her body, which seems to me easier to do than correcting the kicking, pulling or rolling in freestyle or backstroke? At least in breaststroke there is rarely the problem of balancing left and right.

    It's not the slowest I have seen, though. I once saw someone swimming freestyle almost without moving, and all of the rest of us were waiting for him to reach the other end of the lane so that we could start our turns, alas, without any hope!

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    Very Active Member ddl's Avatar
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    Re: In what order have you learned the different strokes?

    Quote Originally Posted by aquageek View Post
    Mine
    Do you have a video to show us?

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    Very Active Member ourswimmer's Avatar
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    Re: In what order have you learned the different strokes?

    Quote Originally Posted by ddl View Post
    What would be considered a bad breaststroke?
    Let me offer you my recent results from a SCM sprint pentathlon.

    50m fly: 35.40
    50m back: 35.26
    50m br: 48.51
    50m fr: 31.85
    100m IM: 1:22.06

    I probably should have been disqualified just on principle.

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    Re: In what order have you learned the different strokes?

    Quote Originally Posted by ddl View Post
    LOL That's very funny. But in such cases you just have to tell the person to flatten down her body, which seems to me easier to do than correcting the kicking, pulling or rolling in freestyle or backstroke? At least in breaststroke there is rarely the problem of balancing left and right.

    It's not the slowest I have seen, though. I once saw someone swimming freestyle almost without moving, and all of the rest of us were waiting for him to reach the other end of the lane so that we could start our turns, alas, without any hope!
    Unfortunately, it's not as simple as telling someone to just flatten out their body. I would say that on average it's probably easier to get someone swimming a decent front crawl than it is to get someone swimming a decent breaststroke, especially since breaststroke is one of those strokes that requires a specific timing in order to swim it properly. Many people think they're doing it right and can't figure out why they aren't moving very quickly, and when you watch them swim, they're kicking and pulling at the same time.

    In general, I've noticed that fixing problems in front crawl is much easier. We had a few guys swimming with a really pronounced s-stroke, and our coach stopped them, showed them where she wanted their strokes, and sent them to do it. That was it--end of story. They will have to focus on it for a little while, but it will become fairly natural pretty quickly. Breaststroke requires focus even when you know what you're doing.

    Some people are just naturally good at breaststroke I guess, and I had little trouble learning the stroke. My problem is really just my inability to focus on something for long periods of time, haha. I think butterfly is more difficult than breaststroke, if not impossible, but that's just me.

  16. #16
    Very Active Member Mary1912's Avatar
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    Re: In what order have you learned the different strokes?

    To be honest, I can't recall the order I learned the strokes but I have all my Red Cross swimming cards so I assume I learned in the order taught by the Red Cross at the time (1970s).

    That video is pretty funny. I've seen some pretty terrible breaststroke. Timing is key with that stroke. Everyone is different I guess. My son could learn freestyle but the breaststroke kick was an enigma to him.

  17. #17
    Very Active Member new's Avatar
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    Re: In what order have you learned the different strokes?

    Quote Originally Posted by ourswimmer View Post

    50m fly: 35.40
    50m back: 35.26
    50m br: 48.51
    50m fr: 31.85
    100m IM: 1:22.06
    100m IM: 1:22 you probably could go 40:00 on 50m Br

  18. #18
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    Re: In what order have you learned the different strokes?

    I learned Crawl, Back crawl, side, breast, elementary back, all the fancy strokes, and last, butterfly.
    I still don't butterfly well. I always avoided it since I did everything esle well

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    Very Active Member Allen Stark's Avatar
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    Re: In what order have you learned the different strokes?

    Quote Originally Posted by mjgold View Post
    It is not clear what she is doing with her "pull" and her "kick" but it is clearly not propulsive.I see a lot of non-competitive swimmers swim"breaststroke" with the "out,back,in" kick.This is an easy stroke to swim and learn,it also produces minimal thrust with the legs.Fast efficient breaststroke is very difficult to learn.I have been working on it for 45 years,with some success,and I am not nearly satisfied.
    "To strive,to seek,to find,and not to yield" Tennyson
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    Re: In what order have you learned the different strokes?

    I also find that they are not so much sculling as they are just moving their hands around, and they come out of the water simply by turning their bodies nearly upright. There are people at the gym who swim "breaststroke" that take a good minute plus to swim a length. But, they are really just there to be in the water and feel like they are getting some exercise, so good for them.

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