Recently, there has been a lot of discussion about the backstroke to breaststroke turn in the individual medley.  How do you do your backstroke to breaststroke turn as a swimmer?  Is it the most effective and efficient way?  Do you know what to look for as a coach or as an official?  How do you ensure that you are doing the fastest turn possible.

I find this quite intriguing because I have spent countless hours observing top breaststrokers performing live. I’ve also studied footage and still images of the world’s best breaststroke swimmers. And I consistently come up with the conclusion that they generally have very similar patterning when it comes to the pull.

Attention all Swim Coaches – Join hundreds of your coaching peers in the World’s largest on-going swimming coach development program. Find out more at Swim Coach Advantage.

In the video below, Australian Head Coach at the 2004 & 2012 Olympics, Leigh Nugent explains the backstroke to breaststroke turn in simple language to assist all coaches, officials, swimmers and parents to understand the different ways of doing it.


Attention all Swim Parents – Would you like to support your child to be the best swimmer and person that they can be? Download the free eBook Top 5 Tips for Swimming Parents today. You will also then be kept informed of the pending release of the brand new Swim Parent support program that will be released in the next month. 


Roll Over Turn

In the video, Leigh also explains how to do the fastest backstroke to breaststroke turn by completing a roll over turn correctly.

The rollover turn is fast becoming the go-to turn for swimming coaches of all children from around 10 years and upwards. This video will help coaches to instruct the different aspects of the turn correctly and enable swimmers, parents and officials to watch how to do the turn correctly.

At Gold Class Swimming, we recommend that the backstroke to breaststroke roll over turn be taught from the early stages of the swimmers competitive development.

Bucket Turn

In the video, Leigh initially takes a look at the conventional bucket turn. This has been used by swimmers for many years. In this turn, the swimmer touches the wall with their hand, spins around whilst remaining on their back and side and then pushes off on their front.

Flip Turn

Leigh also takes a look at the flip turn. This is where the swimmer touches the wall with one hand. They then continue to flip back over, following their hand and push off on their front.

If you are looking for more advice on how to improve your starts, turns and finishes, check out Starts, Turns and Finishes.