Category Archives for "Equipment"

Swimming on a rope!

| Equipment talks and demonstrates tethered swimming

Wonderful introduction!

Some extra ideas from Mark

We called that, "Naked paddles." Perhaps that is a bit "old school." But, it offeres some better lingo than "strapless."

I'd suggest putting the other end of the tubing much higher in the air. You need to have a good base that isn't going to get pulled into the pool, or hit others if it were to fall. And, you don't want it on the building near a window so if the belt comes off the swimmer, or the connection gets bad, or the tube should break, it won't recoil and hit a person or property -- like breaking a window. We loved hooking the end, the place that does not move, to the balcony railing. But, we also made certain that none would walk on that side of the pool. Even putting it onto the blocks is not tall enough.

A tall base helps to get over that that hip sink feeling.

Another tip / activity, put on double or triple belts. Or, just double or triple the tubing. Then it should be tight while you are at the close wall. Then the intensity is much greater. Then you can work the push-off and streamline out from the wall and underwater kick, surface and try like crazy to hit the other end. Doing that on back, side and front many times in a row is working on the jump off the walls.

Of course, the base of the tubing needs to be anchored perhaps 5 to 10 yards/meters from the near edge of the pool. Then there will be some strain just getting into the pool.

Watch out for snapping equipment! Be careful.

Steve’s Zoom call(s), to cover 400 dry land exercises

| Equipment

Coach Steve Friederang, the Editor of Competitive Swimmer Magazine and CEO of

  • Coach Friederang has degrees and teaching credentials in kinesiology, motivational psychology, and English. 
  • He has coached over 100 age group swimmers to the US top 16 and National records, All Americans, and world-ranked athletes who learned their first flip turn from him.
  • Steve loves coaching coaches and has presented at ASCA, ISCA, the U.S. Olympic Training Center. He has led international workshops and is writing his third book, "Perfecting Practice".
  • Steve also co-authored Cool Coach software and designs training equipment, the most recent of which is the Smart Pulley. 

Steve's thrilled to invite you into his home gym and workshop to share in real time.

See and learn of creative concepts on exercises to improve swimming performances and joint balance between practices. Steve can help you help swimmers make a habit of doing specific things between practices that help them help themselves, going from good to great!

Content that makes swimmers swim faster. 

• Teach swimmers to apply the S.A.I.D. principle to their dryland training.
• Interact with Steve, live, in the most specific dryland swim environment.
• Build a plan for your swimmers to come back to swimming with better strokes and more specific strength and a HABIT of doing the right exercises between team practices.

Update: Watch the first recorded event in the series.

Kicking & Swimming

| Equipment

* Fun Friday Feature *

Everyone knows that the arms and hands don't aid in propulsion for RUNNING.

These kicking-have-no-benefit articles have sparked a new, patent-pending running-short invention that features POCKETS for the hands. Golly, why didn't I think of this sooner?

For swimming, I am going to start a new Kickstarter campaign (pun) that includes a BUY BACK PROGRAM for kick boards and fins. Everyone gets to ship me their used kick-boards and fins and pay me for the service of accepting their equipment. Think of the space you'll free up at the pool and beyond.

It is worth it to jettison the worthless. Be the first to ship to 108 S. 12th Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15203-1226 USA. Bitcoins and Cash Preferred! Minimum order $100. 

* Jeff, a little spam tastes better with Heinz Ketchup. *

Foot flexibility for swimmers. Student study in 1982-83

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Grad School Research

While at Baylor University in grad school, 1982-83, as a Physical Education graduate assistant, I had a keen interest in researching flexibility. With our swim programs, we had done a lot of partner stretching and a few routines were favorites and were taught to the swimmers on the teams that I coached.

Prior clinics had exposed me to a Canadian swim coach, Derrick Snelling. His exercises sparked my interest and turned this into a bit of a passion for around the pool deck. 

The research subjects included the the undergraduate students in a few of the swimming classes that were part of the physical education requirement at Baylor. As graduate students, we taught those classes. Furthermore, the B.U. men and women swimmers at Baylor were tested. And, testing occurred at a NCAA swim meet that Baylor attended along with five other college teams, men and women. 


1) Swimmer / athlete sits on floor.

2) With a straighten leg and without knee bend, and heel of the foot was set upon a wooden block. Its height was the width of a standard lumber 2-by-4. 

3) While keeping knee straight (not elevating up with a bend), and while keeping the foot in a straight line with hip/knee/ankle, a measurement was taken from end of the nail on big toe to the floor in millimeters. with a metric ruler. 

4) Both feet were measured.

5) The  first attempt counted. No re-do. No warm up. No pre-limbering nor stretching. I discovered that re-test measures within the same session didn't hold significant differences. The flex test results were able to be radically improved upon by those with poor foot-and-ankle flexibility after some pre-stretching. Those with poor results could improve to normative ranges. Rather than trying to control for the warm-up period, the measurements were taken at first blush. This made the test quick and easy to administer and also gave a larger diversity of results from best to worse.


All of the best kickers and fastest swimmers (top 10%) were the most flexible. 

If the swimmer could make a toe-point measure of 12 or fewer millimeters from floor on the measurement, that person's flexibility would be in the top 25% of the squads.

Of interest: That meet's high-point swimmer had the most flexible toe point.

The measurement goal for swimmers to striving for was < 10 mm. Anything better than 10 mm was not causing much of a distinction in kick-speed performances. 

Those with average, below-average and poor ankle flexibility were never the top 10% in kick performances. There was no significance among their misery with lack of swiftness. 

If you desire more insights, email me,

Long-term awareness

In the end, I discovered for myself that there were dozens of reasons why researchers are wise to avoid hanging their hat of professional advancements on the grossly-vague endeavor of researching human flexibility.

Fin photo gallery

| Equipment

Click image for larger view.

I love the PDF fins. They can be either full foot or else with a strap. We have some of each.

One of these photos is more of a joke image. Hope you enjoy it.