Post author Anna Cleaver
The kick in swimming – is it necessary for triathlon? What is its function? How much focus should we put on it in training and how can we improve it?
Many triathletes assume the kick is not an important part of their swim stroke. Common reasons given are: a wetsuit makes the kick less important, we are not sprinters, and we want to save our legs for the bike and run.
These are in part valid points, however the kick is still a crucial part to the athlete's stroke and should be incorporated into training. Below I address each of these concerns, and also elaborate on how to improve your kick for triathlon swimming.
1. Does a wetsuit make the kick unnecessary?
A wetsuit absolutely assists in body position. However, a poor kick (or no kick) will bring down the hip position and may cause the body to sway from side to side unnecessarily. A smooth continuous kick will actually assist in elevating the body in the water, wetsuit or no wetsuit. To highlight an extreme example, strapping your feet together would cause your legs to sink, making the swim stroke that much harder.