Swimming Tips for Beginners
break things down into manageable chunks
Attempting to perform the full freestyle stroke without any preparation is a recipe for failure. The key to learning the stroke is to break things down into small manageable chunks.In swimming coaching we do something called drills. A drill is an exercise that allows you to practise one part of swimming technique without the difficulty of doing it all at once. Drills sometimes exaggerate a movement so that you can get a feel for it. Here are some drills we recommend you practise to develop your stroke technique
Kicking on your front. With your arms stretched out in front of you and hands placed one on top of the other, kick down the pool. Start with your head out of the water the whole time. When you can do this, move on to putting your face down in to the water between breaths ? make sure you are blowing bubbles into the water! If you have fins (see tip 5) perform this exercise with them on.On dry land practise your arm recovery technique. Lie on your side with the lower arm out in front of you. Practise moving your top arm over and placing it into the water in front of you. Keep your forearm and hand totally relaxed and lead the movement from your elbow.
Kicking on your side. Back in the water, kick down the length again, this time on your side with the lower arm out in front and the top arm resting by your side. Start with your face out of the water all the time. As you get used to this, try putting your face in the water between breaths ? look at the bottom and blow out continuously into the water. If you have fins (see tip 5) perform this exercise with them on.Use these drills to work on different aspects of your technique before attempting the full stroke.Even Olympic swimmers work on drills to improve and maintain their stroke technique. Drills can be fun and they break up the monotony of swimming lengths. Include them in every swimming session you do!