I believe the roll back is a misunderstood transition. Swimmers too often begin with the head. This one needs to start like a thrust, with the lower back. The hips need to lift up, so the lower back has some room to sneak back.
The correct sequencing should go:
- Hip lift, pelvic tilt and the lower back starts to come back to the vertical line. (the head does NOT move)
- Hip lift continues while lower back continues to roll back. THIS IS IMPORTANT! ONCE THE LOWER BACK HITS THE VERTICAL LINE IT STOPS MOVING!
- Hip lift and continue to unroll the rest of the body until the head finally gets to the vertical line.
Remember that every time a body part reaches the line it STOPS & STAYS there. It is common for the swimmers to move everything at the same time. Often starting with the head. These inaccurate starts can lead to fallen lines at the end.
The path the head takes is not really an unroll. The head needs to aim at an angle back to the vertical line of the hips. The head on looks for the wall on the last count when the swimmer switches to support scull.
Check out the video of an incorrect unroll and a correct one:
I think one of the best way to train the unroll is on the wall. Have the swimmer go into flamingo holding onto the wall with the leg hanging on deck. Next they need to hip lift and get the lower back into the wall then the mid back and so forth. I like this one because the swimmer can not move the wall and it helps them feel the vertical line.
Once they master that, move them off the wall using bottles. Really watch to see what the body is doing.
The key to figures is to fix the body first then the hands.
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