Different Ways to Use the Swim Keel

Written by: arena coaches at 3 August '16 0
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Arena’s Swim Keel is a multi-purpose training tool that is about to become an essential part of your daily training.

The Swim Keel is an innovative training aid patented by Arena. As one of the most revolutionary multipurpose training aids currently available on the market, it will become a vital part of your training sessions. Serving as either a float or a pullbuoy, the Swim Keel allows you improve your core stabilization & strength, and develop multiple aspects of your stroke.

Incredibly versatile, the Swim Keel is useful for all swimmers, as it can be used in multiple ways: as a stable or unstable pullbuoy, for developing your butterfly kick or practicing your backstroke kick, as a rehabilitation board or float, and as an aid for finswimming.

Here are some tips for maximizing your practice or workout with the Swim Keel:


Used as a stable pullbuoy (or as an unstable pullbuoy for added core stability – if you are an experienced swimmer), the Swim Keel allows you to control the position of your head and shoulders. If your head is too high or too low, it will affect the position of your hips and legs – which can result in increased water resistance.

To improve your head position, place the Swim Keel between your thighs – this will help your legs float, and allow you to focus on your head position. Try to keep your head at a 45° angle in the water while keeping your eyes on the black line. This position will create less resistance, allowing you to break the surface – and move forward – more effectively.



Excessive rotation of the shoulders during the stroke will result in a poor catch. This can cause an imbalance & misalignment in body position, leading to the development of an irregular leg kick in an attempt to re-establish that balance.

To improve your shoulder position & body alignment, place the Swim Keel between your knees and imagine your chest must stay inside an imaginary rectangle. The aim is to keep your body aligned – eliminating any excessive lateral motion and making your stroke more symmetrical.

Incorporate technical work using the Swim Keel during your training sessions.


Swim 16x50m at a steady pace, changing the position of the Swim Keel every 4x50m



Before using the Swim Keel as a float, consider the two basics for performing a proper butterfly kick

     Leg Posture – keep your legs together, and move through the kick in one fluid motion

     Importance of your hips or “core” – the butterfly kick is a full-body movement, starting at your core (NOT your legs) and moving down your body, all the way through your toes

To learn or improve on your butterfly kick, first practice it in a vertical position. After you have learned the motion, turn onto your back and put the Swim Keel under your head – weight down (or in streamline position if you are more advanced)


1x25y butterfly kick – rest for 15 seconds

1x50y any kick – rest for 20 seconds

1x25y fast butterfly kick rest – for 15 seconds

Repeat 2 or 3 times – according to the target you have set for yourself.

*If you are a beginner, try using the Swim Keel with fins for increased control of your kicks


Get a full-body workout by using the Swim Keel as a kickboard. Lay the Swim Keel flat on its side and extend it in front of you while maintaining your hold.



25y kick trying to go 20-30 seconds – rest for 20 seconds

50m kick trying to be within 10 seconds of your personal best 50m swim time (for example: if you can swim 50m free in 35 seconds, try to kick a 50m in 45 seconds)


The Swim Keel can be used as any training aid you need. Once you have learned its many different uses, you’ll want to use it in every workout!


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arena coaches

Swim coaches, trainers and experts will give you all kinds of tips for performing at your best in both training and races. Meet the coaches