Full-text resources of PSJD and other databases are now available in the new Library of Science.
Visit https://bibliotekanauki.pl


Preferences help
enabled [disable] Abstract
Number of results
2011 | 29 | 49-57

Article title

The Hydrodynamic Study of the Swimming Gliding: a Two-Dimensional Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) Analysis


Title variants

Languages of publication



Nowadays the underwater gliding after the starts and the turns plays a major role in the overall swimming performance. Hence, minimizing hydrodynamic drag during the underwater phases should be a main aim during swimming. Indeed, there are several postures that swimmers can assume during the underwater gliding, although experimental results were not conclusive concerning the best body position to accomplish this aim. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to analyse the effect in hydrodynamic drag forces of using different body positions during gliding through computational fluid dynamics (CFD) methodology. For this purpose, two-dimensional models of the human body in steady flow conditions were studied. Two-dimensional virtual models had been created: (i) a prone position with the arms extended at the front of the body; (ii) a prone position with the arms placed alongside the trunk; (iii) a lateral position with the arms extended at the front and; (iv) a dorsal position with the arms extended at the front. The drag forces were computed between speeds of 1.6 m/s and 2 m/s in a two-dimensional Fluent® analysis. The positions with the arms extended at the front presented lower drag values than the position with the arms aside the trunk. The lateral position was the one in which the drag was lower and seems to be the one that should be adopted during the gliding after starts and turns.







Physical description


1 - 9 - 2011
4 - 10 - 2011



  • Bixler B, Pease D, Fairhurst, F. The accuracy of computational fluid dynamics analysis of the passive drag of a male swimmer. Sports Biomech, 2007; 6: 81-98.[PubMed][Crossref][WoS]
  • Callaway AJ, Cobb JE, Jones I. A comparison of video and accelerometer based approaches applied to performance monitoring in swimming. Int J Sports Sci Coaching, 2009; 4(1): 139-153.[WoS][Crossref]
  • Clarys J. Human morphology and hydrodynamics. In: Terauds J (ed.), Swimming Science III. University Park Press, Baltimore, 1979; 3-41.
  • Cossor J, Mason B. Swim start performances at the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games. In: Blackwell J, Sanders R (eds.), Proceedings of Swim Sessions of the XIX Symposium on Biomechanics in Sports. University of San Francisco, San Francisco, 2001; 70-74.
  • Counsilman JE. Forces in swimming two types of crawl stroke. Res Quart, 1955; 26: 126-139.
  • Goya T, Sugiura K, Matsui A, Hideki T, Oghi Y, Tsurumine O, Takahashi S, Ogai, Y. Forces and image analysis on gliding motion for beginning and competitive swimmers. In: Book of Abstracts of the IXth Symposium on Biomechanics and Medicine in Swimming. University of Saint-Etienne, Saint-Etienne, 2003; 81.
  • Guimarães A, Hay J. A mechanical analysis of the grab starting technique in swimming. Int J Sports Biomech, 1985; 1: 25-35.
  • Jiskoot J, Clarys JP. Body resistance on and under the water surface. In: Lewillie L, Clarys JP (eds.), Swimming II. University Park Press, Baltimore, 1975; 105-109.
  • Kolmogorov SV, Rumyantseva O, Gordon B, Cappaert J. Hydrodynamic characteristics of competitive swimmers of different genders and performance levels. J Appl Biomech, 1997; 13: 88-97.
  • Konstantaki M, Winter EM. The effectiveness of a leg-kicking training program on performance and physiological measures of competitive swimmers. Int J Sports Sci Coaching, 2007; 2(1): 37-48.[Crossref]
  • Lyttle A, Blanksby B, Elliot B, Lloyd D. Net forces during tethered simulation of underwater streamlined gliding and kicking technique of the freestyle turn. J Sports Sci, 2000; 18: 801-807.[PubMed][Crossref]
  • Lyttle A, Blanksby B, Elliot B, Lloyd D. The effect of depth and velocity on drag during the streamlined glide. J Swim Res, 1998; 13: 15-22.
  • Lyttle AD, Blanksby BA, Elliott BC, Lloyd DG. Optimal depth for streamlined gliding. In: Keskinen KL, Komi PV, Hollander AP (eds.), Biomechanics and Medicine in Swimming VIII. Gummerus Printing, Jyvaskyla, 1999; 165-170.
  • Maglischo EW. Swimming Faster. Human Kinetics Publishers, Champaign, 2003.
  • Marinho DA, Barbosa TM, Kjendlie PL, Vilas-Boas JP, Alves FB, Rouboa AI, Silva AJ. Swimming simulation: a new tool for swimming research and practical applications. In: Peters M (ed.), Lecture Notes in Computational Science and Engineering - Computational Fluid Dynamics for Sport Simulation. Springer, Berlin; 2009, 33-62.
  • Marinho DA, Rouboa AI, Alves FB, Vilas-Boas JP, Machado L, Reis VM, Silva AJ. Hydrodynamic analysis of different thumb positions in swimming. J Sports Sci Med, 2009; 8(1); 58-66.[PubMed]
  • Massey BS. Mechanics of Fluids. Chapman & Hall, London, 1989.[WoS]
  • Miyashita M, Tsunoda T. Water resistance in relation to body size. In: Terauds J, Beringfield EW (eds.), Swimming Medicine III. University Park Press, Baltimore, 1978; 395-401.
  • Mollendorf J, Termin A, Oppenheim E, Pendergast D. Effect of swim suit design on passive drag. Med Sci Sports Exerc, 2004; 36(6): 1029-1035.[PubMed][Crossref]
  • Moreira A, Rouboa A, Silva A, Sousa L, Marinho D, Alves F, Reis V, Vilas-Boas JP, Carneiro A, Machado L. Computational analysis of the turbulent flow around a cylinder. Port J Sport Sci, 2006; 6(Suppl. 1): 105.
  • Nicolas G, Bideau B. A kinematic and dynamic comparison of surface and underwater displacement in high level monofin swimming. Human Mov Sci, 2009; 28(4): 480-493.[Crossref][WoS]
  • Polidori G, Taiar R, Fohanno S, Mai TH, Lodini A. Skin-friction drag analysis from the forced convection modeling in simplified underwater swimming. J Biomech, 2006; 39(13): 2535-2541.[PubMed][Crossref]
  • Rouboa A, Silva A, Leal L, Rocha J, Alves F. The effect of swimmer's hand/forearm acceleration on propulsive forces generation using computational fluid dynamics. J Biomech, 2006; 39: 1239-1248.[Crossref]
  • Seifert L, Chollet D, Rouard A. Swimming constraints and arm coordination. Human Mov Sci, 2007; 26(1): 68-86.[WoS][Crossref]
  • Silva AJ, Rouboa A, Moreira A, Reis V, Alves F, Vilas-Boas JP, Marinho D. Analysis of drafting effects in swimming using computational fluid dynamics, J Sports Sci Med, 2008; 7(1): 60-66.
  • Toussaint H, Truijens M. Biomechanical aspects of peak performance in human swimming. Animal Biol, 2005; 55(1): 17-40.[Crossref]
  • Toussaint HM, Beek PJ. Biomechanics of competitive front crawl swimming. Sports Med, 1992; 13(1): 8-24.[Crossref][PubMed]
  • Vilas-Boas JP, Costa L, Fernandes R, Ribeiro J, Figueiredo P, Marinho D, Silva A, Rouboa A, Machado L. Determination of the drag coefficient during the first and second glide positions of the breaststroke underwater stroke. J Appl Biomech, 2010; 26(3): 324-331.
  • Vilas-Boas JP, Cruz MJ, Sousa F, Conceição F, Carvalho JM. Integrated kinematic and dynamic analysis of two track-start techniques. In: Sanders R, Hong Y (eds.), Proceedings of the XVIII International Symposium on Biomechanics in Sports, Applied Program - Application of Biomechanical Study in Swimming. The Chinese University Press, Hong Kong, 2000; 113-117.
  • Vogel S. Life in moving fluids. The Physical Biology of Flow. Princeton University Press, Princeton, 1994.

Document Type

Publication order reference


YADDA identifier

JavaScript is turned off in your web browser. Turn it on to take full advantage of this site, then refresh the page.