Backstroke Swimming Technique

Backstroke is another popular swimming style or technique followed in international swimming competitions around the world. It is considered to be a upside down freestyle stroke, since it is swum with the same alternating arm strokes along with rapid kicks. However, unlike in a freestyle stroke, where the swimmer is facing downwards, here the swimmer's face is facing towards the sky. It is a difficult technique to master, but once mastered, it is a very relaxing swimming stroke where the swimmer does not have to surface for taking breaths.

The limbs apply a constant propulsive force because of the continuous flutter of the legs and alternating strokes by the arms. A swimmer in this style cannot pill his or her arms directly under their body. The head faces upwards with the the waterline above or up to the ears. The body is placed horizontally above the water surface. Body roll includes both hips and shoulders, however most swimmers who swim in the backstroke position swim on the side at angles of 35 and 45 degrees.

There is an increase body roll, which translates into lesser resistance from the water because of the V-shape formed by the body. The hand enters the water with the palm facing outwards and the arm fully extended. The entry into the water needs to be clean, without any splashes. New beginners do the mistake of overreaching, which increases drag force on the body. After the arm has entered the water, the hand sculls ahead, outward and downward with the palm turned towards a downward pitch.



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