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Dolphin kick - why do they teach it at swimming schools and do they all teach it?

(8 Posts)
misscph1973 Wed 27-May-15 15:15:47

My kids (DD 10, DS 8) HATE dolphin kick, and they seem to spend a disproportionate amount of time teaching it in their swimming classes. Why? I doj't see the point, unless you are a competition swimmer. I just want them to learn crawl and breast stroke. Is there any point in asking them if they can not? I assume it's just part of the swimming classes curriculum?

3nationsfamily Wed 27-May-15 15:24:28

It is key to butterfly obviously, but is also vital in the push off from the wall in a streamline position to"get going" before breaking out into the stroke. The hip movement is also extremely useful in teaching breaststroke. If they are still in lessons at aged 8 and 10 and have not yet mastered this , it is probably worth speaking to the teacher as to what level they are at and priorities for what they want to do next.

madwomanbackintheattic Wed 27-May-15 15:30:20

We do the Red Cross curriculum here and it is very much included, as is butterfly. If you just want beginner swimmers, able to stay afloat, then it isn't needed, but if you want competent swimmers able to use any strokes efficiently, then it's par for the course. Everyone hates it to start with, as it's hard, but ultimately it feeds into stroke ability and speed later. Mine have also found it very handy for holidays with snorkeling and diving too.

I'm sure there are coaches who can explain exactly how the techniques practiced with dolphin kick feed into later ability, but I tend to think of it like ballet class - the techniques practiced early are all foundations for later skills, and I wouldn't dream of questioning the inclusion of anything my kids hated or found hard, on the basis that it was going to make them way more competent later.

Added to which, I am utterly in awe of anyone that can do the sodding dolphin kick, as I can't. grin

Hating it is a good reason to practice harder, not walk away. i really wish I had had proper swimming lessons as a child. I am a swimmer (like you want your kids to be - crawl and breast stroke) but I really wish I was strong and confident across the board - swimming is so fabulous, i wouldn't want to limit my kids techniques by dictating what swimming instructors should teach them...

SodiumReindeer Wed 27-May-15 15:31:55

www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=93575235 - DD's swimming coach recently posted this on the club page, it explains why fairly well I think

misscph1973 Wed 27-May-15 15:44:09

3nationsfamily, they have only had swimming lessons weekly the last year, we used to do only intensive courses in holidays.

madwomanbackintheattic - I can't do dolphin kick either, I was never taught it. I am questioning it as my kids hate it and I don't see the point.

Thanks for the link, SodiumReindeer - it explains it well, but doesn't convince me that my kids need it unless they want to be competition swimmers.

I still think it's overkill though!

manchestermummy Thu 28-May-15 09:37:21

My dd's currently learning dolphin kick as a pre-curser to butterfly because it's part of her lessons. She likes working towards badges and demonstrating strokes is part of that. Do they not do ASA stages?

When I learned to swim it was all about distance. As a consequence my technique is crap. At 7, dd has an excellent backstroke, good breaststroke and a pretty decent crawl too. Butterfly is the natural progression.

She has no desire to be a competitive swimmer. Quite likes trying to learn butterfly though as I can't and I think she's set herself a challenge!

Lonecatwithkitten Fri 29-May-15 10:55:15

Some swim schools (mainly those who don't follow ASA) leave it till later. Only once DD was a competent breaststroke swimmer did she start crawl and back crawl and only once they were competent did she start butterfly.
Despite her less conventional training she is the only one in her year 6 ( several are local swimming club) who can do proper triphasic crawl breathing.

ThoughtsPlease Sun 31-May-15 20:35:28

Can I ask what exactly you mean by triphasic crawl breathing?

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