Gain a powerful stroke by mastering the art of the pull buoy

A triathletes favourite pool toy.

The pull buoy is a basic piece of swimming equipment used to improve a swimmers power. It’s my favourite pool toy. Typically held between the thighs to float the hips and give you a better body position in the water. Your body will be streamline and drag will be reduced. The pull buoy is a ‘must have’ for beginner swimmers allowing them to increase their fitness faster as they are able to swim for longer durations.

Benefits of this little toy.

# Improved body position and reduced drag.  If you’re not an efficient swimmer, your legs likely drag towards the bottom of the pool and your feet will act like anchor. This means you’ve probably never experienced the proper underwater catch. You’ve basically never pulled water straight back, but instead have been pulling first down and then back.

# Achieve high elbows. With improved body position it’s easier to achieve high elbows an efficient swim stroke.

# Better catch due to better body position.

# Lower heart rate as the kick is minimised which means you will recover quicker post training. You can work on specific strength without taxing your cardiovascular system already used when cycling or running.

# Rest your legs as you rely on your aerobic system. Less oxygen is consumed when using a pull buoy. Furthermore, a strong kick is not essential for triathletes as they should save their legs for the bike and run.

# Improved strength endurance as the body relies on greater arm strength for propulsion through the water.

# Simulate racing in a wetsuit as both pull buoy and wet suits improve body position.

# Opportunity to practice hypoxic breathing.

# Rotation development as the body generally sits flat in the water with a pull buoy. Emphasis the need to rotate and not remain flat.

# Excellent for scull, polo and doggy paddle drills. Elbows are higher then wrists and wrists higher then fingertips. This will assist your catch and feel for the water and build arm strength.

# Substitute your kick board with a pull buoy when travelling to pack light.

# Can be positioned at your ankles for a greater degree of difficulty and improved core strength.

So next time you ‘put this little toy’ between your legs think about the benefits for developing your aerobic endurance, strength and creating better body position.


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