Tucson, AZ

Past Clinic: Elite Stroke Mechanics: Catch & Kick Camp

Sat, Oct, 02 2021 - Sun, Oct, 03 2021

Aquabear Swim Club and Bear Swim School
2045 W Omar Dr, Tucson, AZ 85704

A description of what was covered at this past clinic is below the upcoming clinics.

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Past Clinic


October 2-3, 2021: Elite Stroke Mechanics - Catch & Kick Camp – Save when you purchase multiple sessions for one or more swimmers!

Highly skilled competitive swimmers will improve their stroke technique in all four strokes by breaking each down into the most important parts: the CATCH and the KICK. Session sizes are limited to no more than 20 participants to ensure the highest level learning experience! This camp will be led by elite clinicians Giles Smith and Kendall Dawson! 

Saturday, October 2: Participants will focus on the “catch” which is the most important part of the pulling motion in each stroke.
Sunday, October 3: Swimmers will cover each stroke’s distinct kicking technique for maximum speed and efficiency.

Scroll down for more details on the curriculum!

Session Times (Both Days):
11 & Under: Check in 8:45 AM, Clinic 9-11:30 AM
12 & Over: Check in 11:45 AM, Clinic 12-3 PM

Suggested Participants

The clinicians will lead two sessions per age group. This camp series is recommended for swimmers with at least 1 year of competitive swimming experience and swimmers younger than 9 years old are not recommended for these camps without your coach’s approval.



In this session, swimmers will focus on a very specific part of the pull that is perhaps the most important part of each stroke: THE CATCH! Swimmers will learn to set their hand and forearm in the water in a position for them to feel the water and to grab a much water as possible. This will allow your swimmer to move further with each stroke. When swimmers spend dedicated time working on improving their catch, they make huge strides in increasing their speed and efficiency in each stroke. This session focuses on just that.

  • FREESTYLE CATCH: The best swimmers in the world utilize an early vertical forearm to put immediate pressure back on the water. Giles and Kendall will help swimmers find the perfect position in each freestyle stroke to achieve the perfect "catch". Finding this position sets up the rest of the pull to be more powerful and faster!
  • BACKSTROKE CATCH: It is very important for swimmers to bend their elbow early in the pull so that they can get an early catch for an immediate and powerful press back into the water. The angle of the backstroke catch and the depth are extremely important in order to achieve maximum power.
  • BUTTERFLY CATCH: Long and smooth strokes will allow your swimmer to have a more efficient butterfly. Giles and Kendall will teach participants to get an early catch on the water for more power in each stroke. Finding the right timing and technique to get and early catch will help your swimmer drop time.
  • BREASTSTROKE CATCH: Participants in this session will learn drills to encourage them to keep their hands and elbows high on the water throughout the catch phase in breaststroke, thereby minimizing resistance and maintaining speed.


The kick is an important part of maintaining consistent speed and balance through every stroke. Strong kicks can propel your swimmer forward, but if done inefficiently, the legs can create also create a lot of drag. Kicking adds to a swimmer’s speed and improves the body position for a more connected stroke. Kendall and Giles will break down the kicking technique as well as timing for each stroke.

  • FREESTYLE KICK: The freestyle kick is more complex than you may think. Having the proper angle in the knee and in the ankle through each part of the kick can help a swimmer to create more power without expending more energy. The timing of the kick is also important so that swimmers can swim with their whole body working together and connected.
  • BACKSTROKE KICK: Have you ever noticed how many swimmers’ knees break the surface when they kick in backstroke? This means that the swimmer is kicking with their knees which is less efficient than kicking from their hip. Maintaining maximum propulsion and proper kicking technique will greatly improve your swimmer’s backstroke.
  • BUTTERFLY KICK: Each butterfly stroke has two equally strong and well-timed kicks. Work on how to achieve the best technique and when to kick in butterfly for maximum speed.
  • BREASTSTROKE KICK: The three parts of the kick are hips, knees, and feet. Giles and Kendall will work with participants to kick with power from their hips while keeping their knees close and feet wide. The kick is about 80% of the power in breaststroke. Get more out of each kick for a faster breaststroke!


Swimmers and parents are invited to ask their clinicians questions during a Q&A session. Gain insight into their training regimen, diet and nutrition, and recovery tactics.


Observe your clinicians swim at full speed and demonstrate a progression of perfectly executed drills to achieve powerful, efficient and fast swimming.


Swimmers will get to practice what they've learned by taking their stroke to your top speed with some of the best swimmers and coaches in the world! They'll work on holding onto their form while challenging themselves.

Take a photo with the clinicians, get autographs, and ALL PARTICIPANTS receive a FREE Fitter and Faster Swim Cap!

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