SANTA CLARA, California, January 10. DR. G. John Mullen is back with his Dryland Tip of the Week, which is a Bear Crawl. The exercise, which is a standard option in many dryland routines, can be helpful if done correctly. Done from a swimming-specific standpoint, the Bear Crawl can help swimmers focus on remaining in streamline position while working their extremities.
Purpose: In long axis strokes (free and back), the body must remain a streamlined position as the opposing arm and leg work to transfer force. This requires frontal and transverse strength to keep the body from shifting out of a streamline position.
Directions: Start in the push-up position (hands under your shoulders and legs straight), then step with your opposite arm and leg, focusing on keeping your core stable. Next, return these appendages to the original position. Repeat with the opposite arm and leg.
G. John Mullen is the owner of the Center of Optimal Restoration and creator of Swimming Science. He received his doctorate in Physical Therapy at the University of Southern California. G. John has been featured in Swimming World Magazine, Swimmer Magazine, and the International Society of Swim Coaches Journal.