Toys or tools or crutches

Using pull buoys, kick boards... can ward off boredom but moderation is the key.  These devices all are intended to help swimmers add variety to their workout.  They also allow the swimmer to focus on one part of swimming. Using a kick board the athlete can focus on building leg strength, using a pull buoy allows the swimmer to limit the propulsion from the legs, isolating the arms and so on and so forth.  

In my coaching we regularly use fins, pull buoys, kick boards, tik toks, paddles, leg straps, and even noodles.  I will detail our use of each of these devices...

Pull Buoy

  • Why I use them: to isolate the arms and streamline the body form.  In private lessons, I use them for in conjunction with leg straps to limit the propulsion and balance offered by kicking or with a kick board when doing kickboard catch up.  By isolating the arm movement clients develop a better feel for the stroke translating into more power.
  • When they are a crutch: many swimmers use their pull buoys to aid them in their body position.  the pull buoy offers floatation and gives the swimmer higher hips and a more streamlined body line.  Swimmers should work to maintain a good body position by balancing their body using their lungs as floatation.  By doing this they will significantly diminish their drag and increase their speed.  Over use of the pull buoy takes away from developing correct body position

Kick Board - 

  • Why I use them: to isolate the kicking movement and build resistance to kicking fatigue.  Although I prefer that swimmers kick with no board in a streamlined position, manytimes this leads to excess pulling on the lane lines and extra body movement rather than proper kicking technique.  Kick boards allow athletes to push themselves harder and build tolerance to the discomfort associated with developing a strong kick

Paddles - 

Leg Straps


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