Common Strokes Taught In Swimming Lessons

by Pool Builders on 12-25-2013 in Articles

In the beginning, swimming lessons are focused on one thing -- teaching students how to stay afloat while in the water. However, after the basics are mastered, students can concentrate on more complicated skills, including moving on to individual strokes. If you don't quite understand the difference between the butterfly and the breaststroke or the crawl and the backstroke, take just a few minutes to learn more about how to perform each stroke.

The Crawl: One Of The First Strokes In Swimming Lessons

The crawl is probably the most common way to swim. When swimmers are using the crawl, they're kicking their legs in a flutter kick while scooping their arms through the water to move them forward. If you've ever watched a swim competition, you've probably seen the crawl during the freestyle event. Swimmers have the option to use any stroke during the freestyle, however the crawl is the most common because it's possible to move more quickly through the water.

The Butterfly: A Fast Stroke For Swimmers

If you're looking for speed and power, the butterfly is the stroke for you. When performing the butterfly, a swimmer's arms, shoulders, head and part of the chest completely come out of the water while the legs stay closed together while performing a dolphin kick. However, coordinating these movements can be quite difficult to learn and can be nearly impossible for younger children, which is why many swimming lessons don't include it until the students are very advanced.

The Backstroke: One Of The Easiest Ways To Swim

After the crawl, the backstroke is probably the easiest stroke to learn and some children especially like it because they aren't required to put their faces in the water. To perform the backstroke, swimmers float on their backs while performing a flutter kick just below the surface of the water. The arms stretch over the head and into the water. It can be difficult to swim in a straight line when performing the backstroke so it may be necessary to pay close attention to pool lanes.

Many competitive cyclists or people who compete in triathlons focus heavily on the backstroke because it's a great way to help counter overuse injuries to hip abductors and IT bands. The movements required for the backstroke help strengthen muscles that can be damaged by cycling or other overuse.

The Breaststroke: A Difficult Stroke To Learn

Like the butterfly, the breaststroke is one of the more difficult strokes to learn. In the breaststroke, the recovery part of the stroke happens below the water, which means that swimmers need to focus more on reducing drag and streamlining the strokes. Swimmers who forget about these details can find it even harder to perform the breaststroke correctly. Additionally, the lower half of the body is more important in the breaststroke and swimmers will use a frog kick to help move them through the water.

If you're interested in learning more about any of these strokes, including how to properly perform them, contact a local swimming center to ask about swimming lessons.

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