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Movements in Swimming

Category: X On And In The Water

If you are learning alone, begin in quiet, shallow water only deep
enough to float you; waist-high is sufficiently deep. Assume the first
position for swimming by throwing your body forward with arms extended
and palms of hands together, at the same time lifting your feet from the
bottom with a spring. This should bring your body out perfectly straight
in the water, feet together and arms ready for the first movement.

Now separate your hands, turn them palm outward, and swing your arms
around in a half-circle until they extend straight out from the sides,
pushing the water back with your hands. In the second movement bend your
elbows and bring them down with palms of hands together under your chin,
and at the same time draw your legs up under your body with knees and
feet still held close together. The third movement is to send your arms
shooting straight ahead, while your legs, separating, describe a
half-circle and your feet pushing against the water force you forward
and then come together again in the first position.

This is a point to be remembered: always thrust your hands forward, to
open the way, and your feet back, to push yourself through it, at the
_same time_. It is like a wire spring being freed at both ends at once,
each end springing away from the middle. When you push the spring
together, that is, when in taking the second movement you draw in your
hands and feet, do it slowly; then take the third movement--letting the
spring out--quickly, thrusting out your hands in front and your feet at
the back with a sudden movement, pushing your feet strongly against the
water and stretching yourself out as far as you can reach.

Next: Floating

Previous: Swimming

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