Bonus 5: Treading Water

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[text_block style=”style_1.png” align=”left” font_size=”17″ width=”940″]Holding onto the wall, lane ropes or floatation gear can be useful but in order to be comfortable swimming in deep water effectively we need to be able to tread water

The purpose of treading water is mainly to sustain ourselves in an upright position as we search for more stable support i.e. wall, shallow water, boat, etc. It is also primarily used for screening our surroundings and monitor where we are; something which we are unable to do when performing strokes

Treading water in a pool should ideally last no more than 1-5 minutes (unless you are playing water polo) because it can be exhausting to maintain however if you want a good cardio workout then test your limits

To use our legs in treading we must learn a technique called eggbeater. Draw a large circle with your legs in a seated position (pool edge or even sitting in a chair). Your knee is the center axis and your feet draw the circumference

Flex your feet; the sides of your feet is what captures the water much like in whip kick. Practice drawing large circles and it should almost feel like peddling a bike. No extreme force or power is required, just smooth circular motions just like peddling a bicycle on a flat road

Next plant your body in the water with your arms resting on the edge as support. Practice drawing your circles in the water with your ankles extending around and behind your knee towards your butt, knees wider than your hips as seen in the video

Next we can attempt this in the deep water with one arm grabbing the wall. The other arm will do sculling while we test out our new eggbeater. Slowly let go of the wall a few times until you feel comfortable supporting your whole weight by yourself

Next we can perform the same exercise by using a kickboard to support one arm or just unassisted but near the pool ledge

Finally for an extra challenge (and workout) attempt treading unassisted and without using your arms. The higher your arms go out of the water the more eggbeater you will need to perform

You will notice that you need to perform eggbeater faster and more frequently in order to compensate for the loss of your sculling arms. Do this last exercise to develop power in your eggbeater



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