Three Ways to Improve your Form in the Water


The main way to improve your form in the water is to undertake some tuition – and then simply practice. Spending time in the water and honing your form is the best way to improve, as the fitter and stronger you become the easier it is to influence the way you swim. Expert tuition is essential, as it’s difficult to improve your own form when you cannot see it; having eyes on the pool deck is an important part of training to improve.

There are many specific ways you can improve your swimming technique, and of course it depends on the actual stroke in question. Here, we take a look at three common ways to improve the standard Freestyle stroke.

1. Ensure a horizontal body position

Swimming is all about being aerodynamic in the water and minimising drag; that is, the resistance of water against one’s body. With that being the case, keeping your body horizontal in the water – and therefore allowing your body to move smoothly across the top of the water – is essential. Remaining perfectly horizontal means that your body is effectively in a ‘tube’ where the only resistance is the water hitting your head and shoulders. The less horizontal you are – for example, if your legs drop lower in the water – the greater your surface area is in terms of creating resistance. A good way to keep yourself horizontal is to try and push your chest down, as this works as a pivot and helps to keep your hips and legs up.

2. Keep your head down

A big part of maintaining a horizontal body position in the water is to keep your head down! Look to the bottom of the pool and don’t lift your head up at an angle, as the latter causes your body to tip and your feet to drop. Similarly, don’t lift your head out of the water to breathe. Instead, roll to the side and simultaneously tip your head sideways so that your mouth just leaves the water enough to take in air.

3. Don’t over-reach with your recovering arm

While it may seem logical to reach as far as you can with your arms each stroke, it may actually prove detrimental to over-reach with your “recovering arm”. Over-reaching often means your arm drops into the water all at once, rather than entering the water smoothly; this becomes an issue as it not only creates greater turbulence and drag, but can also place more strain on your shoulder and lead to issues such as “swimmer’s shoulder”. Aim to slide your hand into the water earlier – around half the distance of a fully extended arm – and then extend it further once underwater.

If you’re looking to improve your swimming, the experienced teachers at Aquastar Swim Schools can help. To find out more about our Squad Program, click here.

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