Single Switch (and Double, Triple Switch)

Purpose: to maintain proper body position and balance (resting on lungs) during body rotation

Pointers: lay on lungs, head underwater looking down, swim through tube

  • Begin as you would for the single-arm lead drill.
  • As when doing the Archer, slowly move the non-leading arm up your side until your hand is at your ear. Keep your elbow high, your hand relaxed and just above the surface of the water, and your lead arm extended about 8 inches below the surface.
  • Only after your hand passes your ear, does your lead hand begin to move rearward. From it's position 8 inches below the surface, your lead hand and forearm form a paddle as your recovering hand enters the water just in front of your head (but does not cross the center line of your body). As the “switch” occurs, your body sharply rotates from one side to the other while your head remains in place looking straight down.
  • Immediately after the switch, press the armpit of the lead arm directly toward the bottom of the pool and resume the single-arm lead drill position. Focus on establishing or maintaining body position.
  • Go through the mental checklist of body position cues—lay on lungs; head underwater looking down; head, hips, and feet all aligned and parallel to the surface; swim through tube; etc.
  • Once body position is confirmed (should take about 10 kicks), repeat switch to the other side. Initially you may only complete a few switches per lap. Perform the switch and your breathing in separate movements. Kick, switch, orient, breathe, repeat. Otherwise, we have the tendency to lift the head and push the lead hand down.

After you've mastered body position and balance during the single switch drill, you can proceeded to the double- and triple-switch drills. These drills are done just like the single switch but without the pause between each switch. (i.e. In the double-switch drill, you'd switch from one side to the other and then back before pausing in the single-arm lead drill position to re-orient then breathe and repeat.) 


See also:   6/1/6 and 6/3/6 Drills


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