Day 4: Hand Entry and Pull

Learning Objectives: Proper hand entry. Hand extension. High elbow pull.


  • Slice your hand in the water
  • Extend and glide (but not for TOO long)
  • Bend your elbow at the beginning of the pull for maximum propulsion


  • Try to reach through the air on your recovery
  • Slap your hand down on the water
  • Drop your elbow on the pull

We’ve covered the head position and hip rotation, two very important parts of freestyle.

Now we will add in the focus on how you will enter your hands in the water upon recovery- and what to do with them when you get there.

Day 4 Workout

  • WARM UP:
  • 200 Easy + Vertical Kicking
  • DRILL:
  • Set #1: 5x100's. First 50 is Shark Fin drill (as in Practice #2), The second 50 is as explained on the right.
  • Set #2: 6x50's with plenty of rest. Focus on this pattern with each and every pull: 1. Extend your arm, 2. Bend your elbow, 3. Keep your elbow high as you pull back, out to your side. Finish the pull by pushing the water behind you, or, towards your feet.
  • Set #3: 12x50's. First 25 is a repeat of the drill you did in Set #1. The second 25 is as explained on the right.
  • 200 Easy Swim
  • TOTAL:
  • 1800 Yards or Meters

How you do it:

  • Set #1: Start as if you are back after making the shark fin, slice the hand forward (in front of the goggle line) and at the same time, rotate the hips to the other side, and swivel your head with your hips to breathe to the side, with your face barely coming out of the water.
  • One arm should be moving forward while the other one moves back. Extend your arm forward, bend your wrist, and pull side.
  • Set #3: Start as you are doing the drill in Set #1. Instead of rolling to face up, roll your hips to about 75 degrees, pause and repeat in the other direction, rolling to face up on the side you started. Now you have completed a double rotation.
  • *Feel free to add or subtract distance as needed.

Common Mistakes:

  • Not starting the pull soon enough, and ending up with both hands out in front and on your stomach. Make sure you are either on one side or the other.
  • Not gliding and pushing the hand and arm down into the water, sacrificing your pull
  • Gliding too long and losing momentum
  • Trying to do an “S” pull
  • Allowing your elbow to drop before starting the pull

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