Paddles, in swimming, are frequently misused, which may potentially cause unnecessary injuries and shoulder issues. However, when these paddles are used properly, they provide you with an incredibly useful tool. This makes paddles worth the financial investment. In fact, you will see swim paddles in swim bags around the world. That’s how important they are.
In this post, we will be discussing everything there is to know about how to use paddles in swimming. As these paddles are primarily regarded as a tool that helps you build strength in your shoulders and arms. But that isn’t always the case. To be deemed effective, swim paddles should only be used in the correct way. Keep reading if you want to know more.
What Are the Benefits of Swim Paddles?
Generally, there are two primary benefits of using swim paddles, which is to build strength and power while you are swimming and to help you solidify great swimming technique habits. Here are some of the other advantages of incorporating swim paddles into your swim training:
How to Use Paddles
While swimmers regard paddles as a strengthening tool, you should also see it as a teaching tool, allowing you to improve your strokes. Here are some technique drills you might want to incorporate in your training:
1. Paddle balance
Position one paddle against your head’s top portion. Pull away from the wall and swim, all while you keep the paddle in its original position. Some advanced swimmers tend to take breaths while they maintain the paddle balance. Doing this technique allows you to get rid of superfluous movements, especially with the body and the head. In addition, it also encourages propulsion.
2. Fist drill using paddles
When doing this drill, try grasping the paddle’s top, without you using the straps. Then, allow your paddle to be extended with your forearm. Doing this technique prevents bending of your wrists, especially during the pull and catch phases. To add, it also minimizes strain on your shoulders.
3. Remove wrist strap
Doing this technique entails you to attach your swim paddle to your hand, using only one finger strap. Then, swim as normally as you would. However, take notice if your paddles slide towards your palms. With this technique, you are likely to find the flaws, especially when you pull underwater. To add, you will notice that the paddle is pushed to the opposite way when your hand is faced in a direction but straight.
Try placing your hands on the swim paddles but get rid of the straps. Then, proceed swimming with your regular sculling movement. In case you didn’t know, sculling aids in developing your feel of the water, supporting a more powerful catch. Also, your swim paddles only stay in its place, especially when you maintain the pressure between the water and your hand. That way, it’s a lot easier to detect the flaws you commit when doing the sculling technique.
Best Practices When Using Swim Paddles
Swim paddles are certainly a great addition to your swim training. However, we don’t recommend that you use then during warm up. Surprisingly, these paddles are best used during the main set, or until your shoulders are already warmed up. Doing so makes it possible for you to improve your every stroke. With this guide, we hope that you will be able to apply them, even if you are doing it for recreation or professionally.