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Learn to Swim | Intermediate LESSON 2 - BACK CRAWL

Back crawl is the only competitive stroke on the back. It is often loved and/or hated. But it is fast, and it is a thing of power and beauty when you see it in a race.

In the MISWay, basic back crawl is introduced the moment swimmers demonstrate that they can swim on their back by themselves across the pool (sometimes even sooner). When teaching basic back crawl, it is important to teach the body positioning, and leg and arm movements separately, and then progressively combine them to develop the full stroke.

Body positioning should at this point already have been taught in the MIS Beginner Swimmer program (see back float), but a review is always encouraged so remember: head back, chest up, body horizontal. The legs and arms are introduced using basic 3-step progressions for each: for example for arms, kinesthetic movements while standing in shallow water, arm movements with a pullbuoy, and then back swim with arms only. Then combine arms and legs and start getting those reps in!

When complete, the swimmer should be able to swim at least 2 lengths without stopping with simultaneous and basic back crawl arm & leg movements, while keeping their whole body horizontal along the surface of the water.

By focusing on basic movements (core techniques) swimmers get in the much-needed repetitions to establish familiarity and good swimming habits at younger ages. The basic movements will later be perfected and tuned for speed, power and competitive swimming in our Advanced Swimmer Program.

The same core techniques should be consistently reinforced throughout, like straight arms and straight legs. Alternate your teaching methods (visual, verbal, mirroring, kinesthetic) and look to see where your swimmer responds best. Remember to focus on basic technical corrections, and above all encouragement and motivation!

*Remember there is no substitute for having a professional swim instructor teach you, and to exercise water safety at all times when following these videos. Swim safely, everyone!

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All swim lessons scheduled at 7:00 PM or later are postponed starting Sunday, April 11. Find out more here