Flip turns are the fastest way to change direction without stopping. Once you have mastered your turn technique, do not slow down during the turn; speed up! Review and visualize the steps below to check your technique.
Flip turn steps:
- Keep strokes long and powerful (not short and choppy) as you go under the flags and approach the wall.
- Maintain momentum of kick, or speed it up, as you approach the wall.
- Judge the distance to the wall by watching the T on the bottom of the pool. Take your last breath as you go under the flags, or at least before you see the T. Do not look at the wall.
- As you prepare to flip, pull down with one arm, leaving the other arm by your side. Both arms should then be touching the sides of your thighs, with pinky fingers in.
- Tuck chin to chest, get in a ball shape or bend at the waist, and throw legs over to flip.
- Plant feet on the wall (toes and the balls of feet) hip distance apart. (If you froze here, it would look like you are sitting in a chair with your hands in streamline.)
- Immediately push off the wall, on your back. Use the muscles in your legs to get a hard, solid push off the wall. The goal is to get past the flags in streamline. (If you froze here, you would be about 2-4 feet under the water, in a perfect streamline, and looking at the ceiling.)
- In streamline, slowly rotate to your side, then to your stomach.
- Pull down with the lower arm first, for your "underwater power pull." For example, if you rotated to the left to get on your stomach, pull down with your left arm first.
- Take your first breath off the wall after you have taken at least one pull.