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Thread: One leg weaker than the other

  1. #1
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    One leg weaker than the other

    So I have a problem: one of my legs is significantly weaker than the other. I think I've always known this, but swimming really made me aware of it because whenever I do a kicking session with a kickboard, I always drift to one side of the lane and usually end up hitting the pool wall or lane divider.

    This happens with flutter kick, frog kick, and scissor kick and it's my left leg that's the weaker of the two. It's gotten to the point where I'm getting hip strain in my right hip from my right leg picking up all the slack. How do I isolate the left leg to make it stronger in the water? Maybe wear a small fin on that leg?

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    Very Active Member Mark Usher's Avatar
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    Re: One leg weaker than the other

    One of the drills we do in practice is to wear a paddle on one side and a fin on the opposite side. We usually start out with the paddle on the strong side arm and fin on the weak side leg and then swap out. It feels a bit odd at first, but is good at addressing your weaknesses, balancing your stroke and engaging your core.

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    Re: One leg weaker than the other

    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Usher View Post
    One of the drills we do in practice is to wear a paddle on one side and a fin on the opposite side. We usually start out with the paddle on the strong side arm and fin on the weak side leg and then swap out. It feels a bit odd at first, but is good at addressing your weaknesses, balancing your stroke and engaging your core.
    Excellent, thank you Mark! Will definitely give this a try.

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    Very Active Member JPEnge's Avatar
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    Re: One leg weaker than the other

    Probably could get some good out of dryland unilateral stuff as well - Bulgarian split squats, 1-leg RDLs, working toward a pistol squat, etc.
    400 IMer/200 backstroker in another life, now sprinter/breaststroker... Yeah, I don't know how that happened either!

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    Re: One leg weaker than the other

    Samusx,

    I encourage you to do a bit of data collection before jumping to the assumption your left leg is weaker because you drift in one direction.

    You may have a tighter left flexor than the right. You could have a left hamstring weakness/tightness. Either of these will change your kick balance.

    Your left ankle could also be less flexible than your right which would cause drag and change in direction.

    You could also be overkicking with your right leg (bigger range than desired) and not realize it. Could be either leg doing this for that matter.

    Yes, it could be your left leg, but it could be other things as well.

    Paul

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    Re: One leg weaker than the other

    1) You could simply try to work harder with your left and ease off on your right. Maybe for a few weeks.

    2) As Windraft said, you could get data - get a video and look carefully at what's happening.

    3) Meditate on this wisdom as you work out:

    Last edited by MickYoung; August 24th, 2019 at 02:37 PM.

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    Re: One leg weaker than the other

    Quote Originally Posted by Windrath View Post
    Samusx,

    I encourage you to do a bit of data collection before jumping to the assumption your left leg is weaker because you drift in one direction.

    You may have a tighter left flexor than the right. You could have a left hamstring weakness/tightness. Either of these will change your kick balance.

    Your left ankle could also be less flexible than your right which would cause drag and change in direction.

    You could also be overkicking with your right leg (bigger range than desired) and not realize it. Could be either leg doing this for that matter.

    Yes, it could be your left leg, but it could be other things as well.

    Paul
    Some good food for thought Paul, thank you. I automatically assumed by left leg was simple weaker but I definitely do have imbalances in my legs other than strength. I know my left hamstring is more flexible than my right, but my left hip is more flexible and has greater mobility. Left ankle is a bit more tight than my right.

    Will have to look into whether or not I'm overkicking with the right. Time to invest in a some water-proof video equipment!

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