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Improving Your Butterfly Kick

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Are you eager to elevate your butterfly swimming to a whole new level? The butterfly stroke stands out for its blend of elegance and raw power, and at the heart of this stroke lies the butterfly kick. Whether you're a novice seeking to refine your form or a seasoned swimmer aiming to shave off those precious seconds, honing your butterfly kick is paramount. In this comprehensive guide, we'll delve deep into a variety of exercises meticulously crafted to enhance the power and efficiency of your butterfly kick. So, let's dive in and unlock the secrets to mastering this captivating stroke.

Understanding the Butterfly Kick: 

To truly master the butterfly kick, it's crucial to grasp its intricate mechanics. Unlike other swimming strokes, the butterfly kick involves a simultaneous undulating movement of both legs, reminiscent of a dolphin's powerful tail. The key to executing a formidable butterfly kick lies in harnessing propulsion from the hips and core muscles while maintaining a streamlined body position.

Exercise 1: Dolphin Kick Drills: 

Begin your journey towards mastering the butterfly kick with dedicated dolphin kick drills. Start by lying on your back, arms extended overhead, and legs together. Initiate the kick from your hips, ensuring a fluid and rhythmic motion. Focus on keeping your kicks crisp and symmetrical, with minimal splashing. As you progress, increase the intensity and frequency of your kicks, aiming for a seamless transition between each cycle.

 Exercise 2: Vertical Dolphin Kicking: 

Vertical dolphin kicking serves as an excellent exercise for building leg strength and refining body position. Stand in the shallow end of the pool or utilise a kickboard for added support. Keep your body vertical, head above the water, and perform dolphin kicks. Concentrate on driving the movement from your hips while maintaining a streamlined posture. This exercise aids in developing the muscle memory necessary for a potent butterfly kick.

Exercise 3: Underwater Streamline Kicking: 

Take your butterfly kick to the next level with underwater streamline kicking drills. Push off the wall, assume a streamlined position with arms extended overhead, and initiate powerful dolphin kicks. Focus on maintaining momentum and efficiency throughout each kick cycle. Gradually increase the distance covered underwater to enhance endurance and reinforce proper technique. Remember to prioritise a tight body position and coordinated kick rhythm.

 Exercise 4: Resistance Band Training: 

Integrate resistance band training into your regimen to amplify the power and explosiveness of your butterfly kick. Secure a resistance band around your ankles and execute dolphin kicks against the resistance. This exercise targets the muscles engaged in the kicking motion while introducing additional challenges. Gradually escalate the resistance level to continuously challenge your leg muscles and foster strength development.

Exercise 5: Core Strengthening Regimen: 

A robust core is fundamental for maintaining stability and generating power during the butterfly kick. Incorporate a variety of core-strengthening exercises into your dryland routine, including planks, Russian twists, and flutter kicks. Strengthening your core muscles not only enhances your butterfly kick but also augments overall swimming performance. Consistency and dedication are key to reaping the benefits of core training.

Exercise 6: Butterfly Drill Progressions: 

Expand your repertoire of butterfly drills to refine your technique and bolster endurance. Incorporate drill progressions such as single-arm butterfly, butterfly with fins, and butterfly with breathing patterns. These drills target specific aspects of the stroke, allowing for focused improvement. Experiment with different variations and tailor your drills to address areas of weakness or refinement in your butterfly kick.

 Exercise 7: Video Analysis and Feedback: 

Utilise video analysis tools to gain valuable insights into your butterfly kick technique. Record yourself performing various drills and strokes, then review the footage to identify areas for improvement. Seek feedback from coaches or experienced swimmers to fine-tune your technique and address any deficiencies. Video analysis serves as a powerful tool for honing your butterfly kick and accelerating progress.

Putting It All Together: 

As you incorporate these exercises into your training regimen, remain committed to the journey of mastering the butterfly kick. Focus on maintaining a streamlined body position, driving propulsion from your hips, and executing powerful kicks with precision. Pay attention to breathing patterns and coordination to optimise efficiency in the water. Embrace the process, stay patient, and celebrate each milestone achieved along the way.


Mastering the butterfly kick is a multifaceted endeavour that demands dedication, perseverance, and unwavering focus. By incorporating a diverse array of exercises into your training routine and prioritising proper technique, you'll unlock newfound power and efficiency in your butterfly swimming. Embrace the challenge, push your limits, and watch as your butterfly stroke evolves into a mesmerising display of strength and grace. With determination and persistence, the sky's the limit in your pursuit of butterfly swimming excellence. Whether you're training independently or under the guidance of a swimming school, the principles remain the same for every age group, So dive in, embrace the journey, and let your passion for swimming propel you toward greatness!