Continuing the partnership with Michael Phelps, Aqua Sphere launch their new swim technique paddle. Available now, the Technique Paddle by MP is an inventive new training essential for swimmers to improve their technique. Let’s find out a bit more about their new swim aid.
Developed with Michael Phelps and Coach Bob Bowman, the innovative paddle design helps to improve your pull technique (wrist, forearm and elbow alignment) by preventing the swimmer from bending at the wrist and dropping the elbow. It ensures that swimmers can focus on technique and stroke mechanics, promoting proper vertical forearm technique. Vent holes provide a natural feel in the water and the design allows for closed and open hand positions. Made from rigid polypropylene with comfortable silicone tube straps, the Technique Paddle by MP is £16.99 SRP a pair from good swim retailers.
Inspiring the design, Coach Bob Bowman states
“The innovative MP Technique Paddle has instantly become an essential part of my training programme. Its long design makes my swimmers use their hand and forearm as a single unit, helping them to feel the connection between the two, and emphasizing the pitch and rotation of the forearm during the pull. Thanks to its versatility, we not only use the MP Technique Paddle for all strokes but also in many different ways: normal, backward and even sideways. It provides good pressure on the water but doesn’t give a lot of resistance which enables my swimmers, more than with any other paddle, to strictly focus on technique and stroke mechanics.”
More information at www.michaelphelps.com The MP brand represents Michael Phelps’ mission to change the sport of swimming by offering high-quality products that help swimmers to reach peak performance. The brand is a shared vision between Michael Phelps, the most decorated swimmer of all-time, Hall of Fame Coach Bob Bowman and Aqua Sphere, the premier swimming equipment manufacturer with robust Italian design and construction capability.
- Design prevents swimmer from bending at the wrist & dropping the elbow
- Structural design promotes proper vertical forearm technique vent holes provide a natural feel of the water
- Design provides alternative hand positions (closed or open)
How do they perform?
We had a chance to try out the new paddles and see how they deliver alongside our usual swim training paddles. Straight away the longer construction of the paddle feels restrictive and limits movement of the wrist. This is how they are supposed to work and really the only movement is the stated open or closed hand. After a few lengths the paddles start to feel comfortable and it begins to feel normal with the straighter wrist position. The paddles offer reduced resistance in the pull stage and should be an useful addition to use alongside your existing paddles. After many lengths in use there was not as much fatigue noticeable in comparison to my normal paddles and I would use the two in training alongside each other.
Build quality is great as you would expect from Aqua Sphere, they feel well finished and rigid in use and are well priced. The smaller surface area of the MP paddles means resistance in the stroke is reduced and thus should limit the chance of strain injury which is often associated with more traditional paddles and their over use. The feeling in the water is more akin to your normal hand drag but now with the benefit of adopting a straighter pull through the water.
These are not a replacement for your existing hand paddles, they complement them and will not break the bank as you strive for better technique.