Hand Paddles are becoming a more common sight at the pool, but not everyone is sure if they should be using them, if you want to improve your swimming technique, distance per stroke, stamina or even your upper body strength then the answer is yes, you should be incorporating hand paddles into your regular swim training. Let's take a look at how such a simple training aid can result in such amazing results.
Added Resistance For Increased Power
The way that hand paddles work is quite interesting. Essentially, they are an effective and easy way of adding a little resistance to your swimming strokes. As long as you are stroking in your usual way, you will find that using hand paddles helps you to have a much more full-on workout in the process. This is because resistance training means you are working against the force, and that is the most effective kind of training for your muscles. So if you are keen on developing strength above all, hand paddles are definitely the way to go.
There are a variety of hand paddles available, all of which have their own strengths, lets take a look at the FINIS agility paddle, by removing the straps that are typically used to fasten the paddle to your hand, you are forced to grip the paddle between your thumb and the lower part of your index finger, this, in turn, encourages the correct hand position in both the catch and pull stage of your stroke. Hand paddles will really amplify any problems you have in the pulling motion. This will really help you iron out and fine-tune your technique for the most efficient stroke you can get.
Ultimate Upper Body Workout
Many swimmers do what they do for the sake of body development. If you are someone who falls into that category, then you will be pleased to hear that hand paddles afford you the opportunity to work out your upper body in a way that you might not have expected. If you couple your use of hand paddles with a buoy especially, then you will find that this is a great upper body workout which is really going to be felt - and which will provide some fantastic results you can see easily in the mirror.
A Range Of Designs
What’s more, you don’t just have to stick to the one hand paddle throughout your training. The truth is that there is a huge range of hand paddle designs out there, so you can make sure that you get your hands on the right one. The iso paddle, for example, is a strapless option which allows you to focus on many different muscle groups, depending which you are keen on working on each session. This same design can also help you to develop your stroke a little more effectively, so it is great for anyone who wants to both improve their strength and their swimming abilities in one go. Then, of course, you have the all-rounder hand paddles such as the arena flex paddle. You will find that this type of paddle is ideal for just general training, so you can see that there is something for every kind of swimmer and every need or desire.
Basic Paddle Drill
Reps: 6×50 – 6×100 Metres (Adjust depending on skill level)
Add 300 – 600 metres of swimming with hand paddles to the middle of your regular swim workout. Be sure to focus on the feel of the water and concentrate on which muscles are being engaged. Try to feel every muscle in your upper body working against the water to propel yourself forward. You should be able to feel when you hit that “sweet spot” of perfect technique. You’ll notice an increased distance-per-stroke if you’re swimming correctly.
Shop For Hand Paddles
Using hand paddles can be one of the best ways to improve your swimming and build your upper body, so it is worth considering getting hold of a set today. You might find it makes all the difference in the long run. At ProSwimwear we feature almost 50 different products in our Hand Paddles category. The huge variety includes everything from budget paddles for beginners, right through to the more expensive elite training paddles which can bring great benefits for competitive athletes.