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A Swim-Specific Shoulder Strength and Conditioning Program for Front Crawl Swimmers

Bradley, John PhD1; Kerr, Stewart MSc2; Bowmaker, David MSc, MPhty2; Gomez, Jean-Francois PhD3

doi: 10.1519/SSC.0000000000000457
Article: PDF Only

Although swimming is a whole-body activity, shoulder problems can be quite common in competitive swimmers. The propulsion for swimming comes largely from the upper body but the lower body and trunk play an important supporting role. The swimming shoulder kinetic chain (SSKC) describes the generation of swimming propulsion using the whole body. Effective swimmers will use the SSKC in their stroke, so effective strength and conditioning programs should also include the SSKC. A series of swim-specific exercises utilising the SSKC are presented that focus on the shoulder but can form the basis of a whole-body swimming strength and conditioning program.

1Independent researcher.

2LifeFit Physiotherapy, Falkirk, Scotland, FK1 1RA, UK.

3Mardyke Arena (UCC), Mardyke Walk, Western Road, Cork, Republic of Ireland.

Address correspondence to Dr John Bradley, c/o Life Fit Wellness, Falkirk Business Hub, Weir Street, Falkirk, UK. FK1 1RA, UK. E-mail:

Conflicts of Interest and Source of Funding.

The authors report no conflicts of interest and no source of funding.

John Bradley is an Associate Lecturer in the faculty of STEM at the Open University, UK.

Stewart Kerr is a Clinical Specialist Chartered Physiotherapist and Clinic Director with LifeFit Physiotherapy, in Falkirk, Scotland.

David Bowmaker is a Clinical Specialist Chartered Physiotherapist and Managing Director of Life Fit Physiotherapy, Falkirk, Scotland. .

Jean-Francois (Jeff) Gomez is the Sport and Athlete Performance Manager at the Mardyke Arena, University College Cork, Republic of Ireland.

© 2019 by the National Strength & Conditioning Association