May 20, 2020
A Note From Coach
Hello Ducks!

I hope you're all doing well! As I hope you saw in the email that I sent to all families on Tuesday, we will be returning to practice
June 1! Please watch for another email from me regarding registration, which will open in the next few days.

CLICK HERE to read my email if you haven't already.

As my email explained, we will return in a “phase one” protocol using USA Swimming’s guidelines.

ACTION REQUIRED: As we plan to return, please email me ( by 10PM this Thursday (5/21) to let me know if your child will be swimming with the Ducks this summer. Your response is critical, as it will give me some preliminary numbers and greatly help me finalize our practice schedule.

Thanks, and I look forward to seeing you all soon! Go Ducks!

Coach Biller
Coach Biller's Technique Tip of the Week
Take a look at the pictures below. I love these pictures because they show very clearly all of the points that I preach about backstroke.
Backstroke Best Practices:
*Head still and neutral with the only the eyes, nose and mouth out of the water
*Shoulder out of the water before the arm recovery allowing for a deep pull
*Pulling arm is bent 90 degrees with the fingers pointing to the side wall
*Paddle is made up of the hand and fore arm with a strong neutral wrist
*Opposite hip of pulling arm is up allowing deeper pull
*Long kicking legs with knees underwater
*Feet pointed and extended, great ankle flexibility
*The body is rotated and not flat while keeping shoulders, hips and legs on the surface and not sunk.

The Catch and Pull
During the catch and pull in backstroke, the key is to use your body to get more leverage on the water.
  • After the hand enters the water, think about where your hips are. If they’re flat on the water, chances are your shoulders will be, too, which means reaching back. Roll the opposite hip of the stroking arm towards the sky. Your shoulders will follow and you’ll get a better catch.
  • Think about grabbing an armful of water and throwing it to your feet.
  • Rotate your whole body as one piece.
  • Pay attention to where your hand finishes. If it’s palm down under your buttocks, then you’re using your hand to make the rotation happen and not your body.
  • Dip the little finger towards the bottom of the pool before you initiate the catch and pull. Make sure you’re deep enough so that your fingers don’t break the surface on the pull.

The Kick
Having a strong and steady kick is essential to backstroke. Out of all of the strokes, backstroke requires the most vigorous and continuous of kicks.

A few important aspects to work on:
A constant leg motion is required. This doesn’t mean you have to hammer with the legs, but rather keep a gentle steady motion. If the kick stops, the whole lower half of the body sinks, so a steady kick is vital to keeping a long buoyant position on your back.
If you are looking to improve your leg endurance, focus on pure kick sets whilst on your back. Leg strength is one of the most important aspects of backstroke.

Ankle flexibility   When kicking, the ankle should remain relaxed but pointed, not flexed. The ability to bend and point your ankle allows for a snapper motion. Increasing your ankle flexibility will benefit your kick greatly. Try ankle stretches on land or kicking sets using fins.

When kicking, bend into your knees. A misconception is that your legs must remain straight. Hips are long and straight but you shouldn’t lock out at the knees. Instead, allow your knees to naturally bend like a hinge. Imagine you are kicking a soccer ball, you are bending into your knee and focusing on the power coming off your foot. Keep your kick small and narrow. Avoid taking long leg strides (like when running or biking), the feet should not travel further than half a foot up and down.

Backstroke kick momentum is upward. Try to flick your toes up and put propulsion in the upward swing of the foot. Don’t think of kicking downward into the water.

A good way to check on your kick is to tilt your eye gaze down while you’re on your back. You should see your toes break the surface, but not your knees, and should feel like your body position is maintained long at the surface.

Watch a pro in action. Check out Ryan Lochte's backstroke below:
Duck Spotlight
We have amazing swimmers on our team! We're excited to highlight a different Duck in each team newsletter. If you'd like to be featured, send in a picture and answer these questions. Email them to Coach at .
Meet Evan Langelund
1. Tell Us About Yourself (age, school, swim group, parent(s), etc:
I'm Evan Langelund, and I'm 15 years old. I'm a freshman at Big Foot High School and I swim with the Mallards.

2. If you had a warning label, what would yours say?
Warning: I just got my driving permit! Watch out! 

3. What motivates you to work hard?
Just thinking about the reward and the thought of that last meet and last race is what motivates me to work hard everyday.

4. What is your proudest accomplishment?
Going to high school state as a freshman for swimming. It was a really cool experience, and after a long season of hard work it was really great to see it pay off.

5. What makes you laugh the most?
My friends and family and especially my brother, Noah.

6. If you could choose to do anything for a day, what would it be?
I would want to hang out at a beach in Hawaii or boat on Lake Geneva all day with my friends.
7. What would you sing at Karaoke Night?
Pumped Up Kicks by Foster the People

8. If you could only eat one meal for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Breakfast - Eggs, hash browns, bacon and pancakes.

9. How would your friends describe you?
Awkward, nice, funny, weird, fast (in the pool)

10. If you were a super hero, what powers would you have?
Flying and invisibility
Ducks Dryland Workouts
Here's Dryland Routine #7 - Do 2-3 Times Weekly

Warm Up
2 x 1:00 Squat Thrust
1:00 Squats
3 x 1:00 Planks

Work Sets
Mountain Climbers 3 x 60 steps, then 12 push-ups
4 x 1:00 Squats - vary stances (Narrow, Neutral, Wide)
2:00 Walk Out Push Ups – 5 push-ups per walk out

Core Rotations
3 x 2:00 - 4 exercises :30 each
Sit Ups/Penguins/Flutter Kicks/Jack Knives

10 Minute Stretch ( use this video )

Unsure how to do the exercises? Check out previous workouts (especially 1 & 2) for examples:
Positive Thoughts
Ducks In Action
These two Ducks (Kylie Kramp & Aspen Whowell) were spotted in the lake.
They couldn't wait any longer to get in a swim!
Questions About Team?

Contact Coach Glenn Biller at or 262-248-6211, ext. 23

Visit our website for team updates, practice schedules, meet info, & more.

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