If you want to look like a real professional in the pool, mastering tumble turns are an absolute must! Aside from looking pretty impressive to other swimmers, the main reason for trying your hand at these types of turns is that they are far quicker to do than to touch your hand to the side of the pool.
If you want to look like a real professional in the pool, mastering the tumble turn is an absolute must! Aside from looking pretty impressive to other swimmers, the main reason for trying your hand at these types of turns is that they are far quicker to do than to touch your hand to the side of the pool.
Tumble turns (or flip turns) are also better for fitness as they stop you from taking a rest at the end of each length. They make you push your body harder and you get more out of your pool session without spending longer in the water.
Front Crawl Turn:
Let’s begin with the front crawl turn. Before racing on to mastering the technique you should first practice some forward rolls in the water to get used to the sensation. When you feel happy with this, start to swim a few strokes into a forward roll concentrating on getting your head down fast, while trying not to paddle too much with your hands. Next try swimming forwards towards a wall and rolling before standing up. This will allow you to experiment with distance, i.e how close to the wall you can get without hitting your head! You should now be ready to roll and plant your feet on the wall as you go over. Try to keep your feet apart a little (about shoulder width), and push yourself away from the wall with the balls of your feet as though you are trying to jump up, twist your body as you glide away from the wall so that you are ready to begin front crawl again. Try to keep your body as streamlined as possible once you have pushed away from the wall, bring your arms close to your ears and place one hand on top of the other. Really tuck your body in and point your toes!
Back Crawl Turn:
Once you have mastered the front crawl turn you are ready to try the back crawl turn. First of all you need to figure out where the wall is! Sounds silly, but you don’t want to bump your head at the end of every length. Do whatever you can to figure this out; count your strokes, looks for points of reference etc. As you approach the wall you need to quickly flip onto your front to begin the turn as you would for the front crawl turn. Push away from the wall, but this time stay on your back so that you can begin the back crawl again when you surface. Again, really streamline your body as you push off the wall.
The technique for turning is the same for breaststroke and butterfly. Remember that you must touch the wall with both hands; you may need to practice swimming towards and wall and stretching your arms out to touch it as you need to get your speed and placement correct. Once you have touched the wall, take one hand away and twist your body sideways while pushing away from the wall with your legs so that you are on your front again and ready to continue.
As with everything worth learning practice makes perfect! Tumble turns are something which is unique to each person, you will learn the steps, but will form your own personal technique. Good Luck!