Take a close look at this diagram. When you initially look, it seems like there is good mobility in the swimmers freestyle streamline kick. However, my goal is to challenge the visual appeal to this because I believe perfection in swimming just isn’t possible. If it was, people wouldn’t keep breaking world records, right? So, I’m here to discuss the connectivity of this motion. If you notice this bisection of lines, specifically the GHJ. line and the thoracic spine line, you will notice that this bisection occurs above the middle of his body. Also note how the thoracic line crosses above the hip joint. If you see, this swimmer presents with excessive kyphosis which causes a compensatory arch in the lumbar spine. It is also evident thru this visual that the swimmer has limited hip flexion on the Left leg, which in turn shortens the follow thru portion of the kick on the same leg. Now, because of this limited hip flexion on the Left leg, hip mobility on the contralateral side will be limited, hence the minimal excursion of the up-kick on the Right leg. The point of our yellow line is to show the connectivity of the pelvis and how limitation in one side causes limitation on the opposite side in an indirect manner. The reason for this limited hip flexion is that the swimmer is compensating for their kyphotic posture by over-arching their lumbar spine. This over-arched position puts the hip flexors on stretch, minimizing their ability to contract efficiently for the required motion (what we call a length-tension relationship). So the question is, what can we do to fix it? Well, our next mobility series will target this issue and improve the athletes overall alignment in the water. Till next time!