imagine having a weight on a 2-4 inch rope attached to your pinky.
You have to drop the weight in the water in front of the shoulder, in front of the hand.
Doesnt matter what arm shape¨you use to achieve that. This can be done with a classical high elbow or a straightish recovery.
The weight is pulling on your pinky for the majority of the recovery.
If you make a stabbing movement before entry the hand will hit the water before the weight. Thats the wrong movement.
Maybe the hand can just overtake the weight in a very agressive arm entry, but on average I think the weight will be leading.
just my 2 cts
On a deeper level its not about the arm recovery , but acquiring a relaxation and sense of being suported by the water that allows you to choose any recovery you like.
Ideally you want to achieve the skill level to be comfortable with this drill, than add a recovey thats working well for you on this basis.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9xgkr9nZZmk
Its a tough drill, even the model swimmer breaks her rhythm by taking too much time for breathing now and then, but its the starting point of an optimal stroke in the end.
Once the arms are free and no longer needed for any (often unconscioius) support you are truly free to use them optimally for propulsion purpuses.
this is in theory.
In actual swimming there often is extra support from the underwater arm that is beneficial and working together with the weight of the recovering arm.
They are working together, certainly in a more shoulder driven stroke.
For this kind of stroke the no arm drill is like walking a tightrope without a balancer.
In shoulder based swimming the 2 arms give extra balance leverage like using a long balancer on a tightrope.
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