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Training drills with Clément Mignon

Part two of "Drills with the Orca Team" with Clément

In part two of our “Training Drills” series, we feature Clément Mignon, a French triathlete who has joined the BMC team as a new signee this season. If you’re not familiar with him yet, we recommend that you read his interview, which we shared in previous posts.



Clément began his athletic career as a swimmer before transitioning to triathlon. For 10 years, he focused solely on propelling himself through the water at maximum speed, tirelessly repeating hundreds of thousands of movements in pursuit of perfecting his already excellent technique.

Professional swimmers and triathletes often incorporate technique-focused exercises into their training routines.

In the five exercises demonstrated by Clément, we’ll concentrate on the catch, the kick, water positioning and shoulder rotation.

1. Front crawl

This exercise targets the initial part of the underwater phase, known as the catch. You will isolate this movement, repeatedly practicing it while progressing along the pool.

Maintain alignment between your shoulders, hips and feet, with your arms nearly extended. Move your wrists and palms sideways, as if you were drawing a figure-eight, ensuring your elbows stay higher than your hands. The goal is to maximize the sensation of the catch and the forward movement.

Optional equipment such as a snorkel and/or pull buoy can assist with this exercise correctly.

2. Dog paddle or pull stroke

Focusing on the catch and pull, this movement targets the recovery under water. Mobilize your hands and forearms with the same gesture as the previous exercise, keeping your elbows elevated and palms facing backwards. 

3. 3 paddles and 6 kicks

By alternating with side kicks, this exercise allows you to concentrate on the stroke’s complete movement. It prompts you to reconsider the gesture and consciously repeat all its components. Simply perform three strokes and six side kicks, alternating sides.

4. Water polo or swimming with your head above water

Swim continuously while keeping your head above water and keeping your gaze on a fixed point. This exercise prevents excessive head movement during swimming, focusing the stroke on the catch, which makes it easier to stay above water and recover swiftly and efficiently. 

5. Side kick alternating with arms in neutral position

For this exercise, fins and a snorkel are recommended. With arms extended along the body, advance with kicks along the pool—six kicks to the right, six front kicks, and six to the left. This style of kick helps to rotate the body in a more controlled and progressive turn.

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