My Favorite Sets for Developing Flutter Kick Thunder-Speed

A few days ago I posted an answer to newsletter subscriber Matt R. who was struggling with how to improve his flutter kick. In the days that followed I got a bunch of emails asking for sets to help improve your flutter kick.

I have always been a decent kicker, with a kick that is disproportionately fast compared to my swimming. Part of that is because from an early age I always identified myself as a strong kicker, so I always enjoyed whenever coach scrawled up sets that were kick-centric on the board.

I perform variations of the following two sets on a nearly daily basis, with the goal being of working down towards being able to kick a :30 second 50m kick.

(Last time I did a 50 blast for time I posted a :33, so I am working my way there.)

SET #1

This is probably my favorite set to do. (Except for the world-famous and universally appreciated 2 x 5min hot tub.)

It’s great especially at the beginning of a training cycle when you are laying a nice, thick aerobic base, and also in the midst of hard training when you give your shoulders a break from the intense stuff.

30×50 free kick w. flutter board @:55 as—

  • 25m fast, 25m cruise. Target: 45 seconds or faster.
  • Every 5th one all out. Target: 37 seconds or faster.

The variations you can do on this set are endless. Take a little more rest to get even more speed on those 25’s fast, strap some fins on for the last couple rounds, and play around with the intervals.

SEE ALSO:  How to Develop an Awesome Underwater Dolphin Kick

SET #2

To really build up the power in your legs, while also helping improve your ankle flexibility, strap on some fins and a corner in the deep end.

sets to improve your flutter kick

The best part about this set?

No matter how busy the pool is you can always grab yourself a corner of the lane. This is a favorite of mine to do when the “fast” lane at the local Y is overflowing with swimmers and I need to kill some time while also getting some work in.

SEE ALSO: 3 Drills for a Faster Freestyle Kick

Although it only takes about 5 minutes at the intervals listed below, it can be taxing (for me, at least). Feel free to play around with the reps and intervals while also adding resistance and the awesomest of form.

With fins:

10x:30 as– :15 seconds as fast as possible, :15 seconds off.

  • Focus on generating power in both directions.
  • Maintain a straight body line, while kicking in front of you.
  • Start with your wrists out of the water. Graduate up to having your body in a perfect streamline. (And no, having your arms looking like you are holding a beach ball over your head is not a streamline.)
  • 20lb brick optional when available. (Lifeguards always be misplacing it!)

my favorite sets for a fast flutter kick

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Olivier Poirier-Leroy Olivier Poirier-Leroy is the founder of He is an author, former national level swimmer, two-time Olympic Trials qualifier, and swim coach.

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