3rd Stage of a Powerful Start


Altitude and Distance, Up and Out -- Where do you want to spend the most time, in the air or the water?

The legs should extend and should be jumping up with the arms leading the way up and out.  Bring those arms up quickly right up next to your ears.  The arms should be pointing the way up and then out.

The arms should be leading the way up!  The head should not be leading here.  If the head is leading at this point, usually it is in a downward position. The head should be following the lead of the arms.  The arms should come up quickly, tight against the ears. The head should be in line with the spine.

The arms should not be dangling down or out to the side.  The arms should be pointing the way up and then out in front as though reaching for the backstroke flags.  Sometimes swimmers will have their arms swinging in the opposite direction from that which we would like to see.  In countless logos and and even on swimming trophies we see exemplified the erroneous starting position of swinging the arms back behind the swimmer as though this is the technique that represents competitive swimming.





If the body is falling down instead of jumping-up, the legs may be in a position where there is no longer any extension left for the legs to jump-up.  Think of your jumping muscles as rubber bands.  The muscles need to be stretched and then quickly let go to launch you.  There is no advantage to stretching your muscles and then slowly falling forward to lean towards the water.
 Another PowerStarts(R) Secret

The power of the start comes from gravity.  Galileo taught us that we all fall at the same velocity while in the air, regardless of body size.  The value adopted internationally for gravitational acceleration is 9.806 meters per second per second.  

That's approximately 4 meters per second from a starting block!.  (The velocity varies depending on the height).  The velocity of the swimmer while in the water is approximately 1.5 meters per second.

So what's the hurry to get to the water?

Where do you want to spend the most time?  Water is 1,000 times more denser than air.  Water creates a ton of resistance.  We travel three-to-ten times faster in the air than in the water.  The longer the flight in the air translates to one-to-two meters advantage gained per second.

Do the math! Where? do you want to spend the most time?  In the air or in the water?