Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Acronyms.
a method of sports swimming on the breast, characterized by simultaneous symmetrical movements of the extremities in a horizontal plane.
In executing the breast stroke the swimmer lies in the water horizontally, swings his arms to the sides with his palms turned outward, bends them at the elbows and brings them together in front of his face.
At the same time, the swimmer pulls up his legs while rotating his feet to the sides. Then he stretches his arms forward. The inner surface of the knees and feet push against the water and the legs impel the swimmer’s body forward by their circular motion and are then brought together. The swimmer moves forward and then begins a new cycle of movements. The breast stroke is also used as a corrective exercise in cases of curvature of the spine. There is a variation of the breast stroke—a more rapid method known as the butterfly.
The program of the Olympic Games includes two distances of the breast stroke—100 and 200 m. The breast stroke is also one of the stages of the 4 × 100-meter relay and part of the medley competition. As of Jan. 1, 1968, the established world records in the men’s breast stroke were 1 min, 6.7 sec, V. Kosinskii (USSR), in the 100-meter race and 2 min, 27.8 sec, I. O’Brien (Australia), in the 200-meter race. World records in the women’s breast stroke are 1 min, 14.6 sec, C. Ball (USA), in the 100-meter race and 2 min, 39.5 sec, C. Ball, in the 200-meter race.
Great contributions to the development of the breast stroke have been made by the Soviet swimmers A. Mareev, Honored Master of Sport L. Meshkov, European Champion (1966) and Honored Master of Sport G. Prokopenko, Olympic Champion (1964, Tokyo), European Champion (1966), and Honored Master of Sport G. Prozumenshchikova, world record holder (1969) and Master of Sport N. Pankin, and others.
N. A. BUTOVICH