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What are the Surprising Benefits of the Doggy Paddle?

simply swim doggy paddle
The doggy paddle is a basic swimming technique that focuses on the underwater catch and the pull of the arm strokes that resemble the actions used by a dog when swimming, hence its name. Although it’s often taught by learn-to-swim teachers, doggy paddle drills are regularly used by some of the world’s top swimmers.

How important is the doggy paddle in swimming?
It is often the first swimming stroke used by young children when they are learning to swim. The dog paddle has also been taught as a military swimming stroke when a silent stroke is needed - since neither arms or legs break the surface.

What are the benefits of a doggy paddle?
Improving The Freestyle Technique
The doggy paddle is used by many swimming coaches to improve a swimmer’s freestyle technique.

  • Some swimmers pull with an arm stroke that is too wide and away from their body.
  • Other swimmers cross their arm stroke over the centre line of their body.
  • These are both ineffective arm strokes, often causing the swimmer to snake through the water.
  • The doggy paddle is an effective drill to help correct these technical faults.
To Develop A Feel For The Water
The doggy paddle is an effective drill that can help a swimmer develop their catch and help them to develop a feel for the water.
  • A feel for the water is the ability of a swimmer to place their hands and arms in the correct position, with the right amount of force to obtain maximum propulsion.

To Develop Arm And Core Strength
The doggy paddle is an effective drill for developing a swimmer’s arm and core strength.

As A Recovery Swim
The doggy paddle can be used as an effective recovery swim.

  • Recovery swims are those sets and/or repetitions (reps) that are performed at a slow swimming pace to enable the swimmer to recover from the rigors of the training during a session.
  • The doggy paddle can also be used as a part of a warm-up and /or cool-down.
As A Fun Drill
The doggy paddle can be a great way of introducing some fun into a training session.
  • It can even be used as a fun relay.
    As A High-Intensity Drill
    The doggy paddle requires the swimmer to continually move their arms against the resistance of the water, with no glide phase.
    • This makes a quick-tempo doggy paddle, an effective drill for use in a high-intensity training set.

    Is doggy paddling efficient?
    The doggy paddle is a basic swimming stroke that can be effective for beginners or for casual swimming. However, it is not the most efficient or fastest swimming technique.

    Is the doggy paddle a good workout?
    Because swimmers must continually move their arms against the resistance of the water with no glide phase, the stroke can serve as a high-intensity drill. The doggy paddle is a great option for people who are just learning to swim or who are re-familiarising themselves with the water.

    Is front crawl the same as doggy paddle?
    Unlike the front crawl, which involves two separate movements for your legs and arms, the doggy paddle sees the same kind of rotating paddle in all areas. The result is a gentler movement that keeps your head above the water, making this style less stressful and more comfortable to ease into.

    The doggy paddle serves as an effective introduction to swimming, promoting proper breathing techniques and buoyancy control. It can be a valuable skill for water safety, offering individuals the ability to stay afloat and move in the water with ease. It’s also great for further development and correcting your technique in swimming.