Swim Basics

Swimming is very different for each person. There are many different ways to train and different techniques depending on the person. So if you try one way or ever have lessons with one person and it doesn’t seem to be working for you, don’t stop there! There are thousands of different ways to swim.


One of the most important parts of swimming is being able to relax. It is key you learn to be comfortable in the water and in all different positions in the water: underwater, upside-down, sideways, on your front, on your back.


You kick plays a role in keeping you level in the water. The kick helps keep your body level and feet near the surface. Your feet being near the surface is key in helping move your body through the water. You want to keep a constant kick.


Some people say they are a “sinker” and can not float, however, everyone can learn to float. Floating takes practice and you have to find the center- of-balance within your body.


Many people view swimming as pulling your hands down through the water aiming to move them forward through the water. Instead swimming should be viewed as anchoring your hands and forearm in the water (catch) and using your arms to pull your body up and past your hand. This anchor is created by having a high elbow and your fingers pointed down towards the bottom of the pool. Once you have created this position , or set up your catch, you start your pull. Your pull will move your body through the water, use the anchor you created to pull your body. Once your head and upper body is past your hand you use the rest of the length to push your body further through the water, also known as the finish.


Swimming success is not only fitness based. You can be extremely fit and if your technique is not working, you won’t swim as fast as you could. Both fitness and technique are equally important roles in your swimming success. Every swim I recommend having some focus on technique in your warm up, then focus your main set on improving a targeted energy system to improve fitness, then ending the swim with some cool down including technique.

Happy Swimming!

SwimMarilyn Chychota