Freestyle Swim - Tips to Improve Your Stroke

by Pool Builders on 01-22-2011 in Articles

The most basic stroke for all swimmers is called the freestyle. This can also be known as the front crawl or the sidestroke, and it is the basis for many training regiments. It is the fastest competitive stroke, and also uses the least amount of energy. There are a few things to focus on in order to swim this stroke well.

Alignment of Your Head:
The position of your head as in integral part of the overall position of your body.It has long been known that body movement is largely connected to where your head is turned and where your eyes are looking. You should keep your eyes looking down while under water to allow the water to pass over you more easily and reduce resistance. If your head is looking forward, the rest of your body will sink and make it harder to glide through the water.

Arms:
When swimming freestyle you want to reach out as far as you can, fully extending your arms. As you roll your body, this will become smoother and allow you to grab more water that you push back towards your hips. Also use your elbow to force the water back by bending it. This process should be done as quickly as possible.

Hands:
When swimming freestyle, the hands are the first part that enter the water and play a key part in progress through the water. How you position your hands during freestyle depends on if you are sprinting or swimming distance.If you are sprinting, you should have your hand flat, fingers slightly apart, with the hand pitched down so that the fingertips hit the water at the same time. Many distance swimmers like to have their thumbs enter the water first to allow for a wider sweep.

Legs:
Legs do not provide much of the power during freestyle, but that does not mean they should be ignored. Keep your body horizontal and keep your legs kicking. Small quick kicks are the best, and your feet should barely break the surface of the water. This will also keep your legs from sinking.

Freestyle Breathing:
Breathing at the right time is very important. Swimmers need to develop a rhythm and get adjusted to it. Pick a side you wish to breathe to, or try to alternate. Every third stroke or so is a good time to breathe. Remember to keep your head face down looking at the bottom of the pool which swimming, and turn it to the side when it comes time to breathe.

Hopefully many of these tips will help you out. If you want to read some more about Freestyle Swimming, check out Freestyle Swim Blog

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