THE PULL: ARM POSITION
Swimmers are often confused about exactly where the arm is supposed to pull in the freestyle stroke. To add to the confusion, there isn't one correct position -- but there are definitely incorrect ones. I tell people that it's important to 1) attain a high elbow position with your hand and forearm pointing back and 2) adjust your angle to find your leverage and thus best pressure and power.
ARM POSITIONS OF ELITE SWIMMERS
Hopefully this pictorial collage is helpful. It is critical that each swimmer find access to the big muscles of the lats and chest so that the shoulder tendons don't bear the pressure of the pulling arm. If there is shoulder pain I would suggest a more narrow pull within this range.
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