As a 60-year-old tri who had left shoulder rotator cuff surgery 10-2011. I’m trying to restore my front crawl balance after shoulder surgery.
My balance is not there, and the left arm sinks on my catch, causing drag, I pull with a buoy between my ankles, and that helps, but do you have any more drills for my balance?
Your problem is a lack of strength in your rotator cuff and surrounding muscles, and some post-surgery rehab is needed.
I am sure you are already in contact with a physician or consultant who can advise you on specific exercises to help build strength in your weakened shoulder joint.
As far as swimming goes, it is potentially one of the best forms of rehabilitation, depending on the nature of your injury and the result of your surgery. That is where your physician will come in.
As for front crawl swimming drills, any exercise that involves keeping your arms extended out in front of you for a prolonged period will help to build up the static strength in those muscles in that position and then gradually, over time, restore your swimming stroke balance.
Begin with holding a float or kickboard and kicking your legs. It sounds pretty basic, but the simple act of holding the float out in front of you will be a challenge to your weakened muscles. Hold the float with your hand at the bottom and not with your arm resting over the surface of the float, as this will simulate the stroke more accurately and have more of an effect on your muscles.
You can try holding the float with only one hand, alternating between your strong arm and your weak arm, as this may help you to judge the difference in arm strengths, particularly as you become stronger and they become more evenly matched.
Exercises such as push and glide, where the arms remain extended out in front or push and glide, adding leg kicks and front crawl catch-up, are all slightly more advanced regarding the demands placed on the muscles. Venture onto these exercises when you feel strong enough.
My ebook How To Swim Front Crawl contains over 20 separate swimming exercises to help all parts of freestyle, including those mentioned above. You can download it, print out the parts you need and take them to your pool to try out. Click the link below for more information.