The Basics of Swimming Techniques for Beginners

Good swimming is the foundation of any good swimmer. The right technique will help you move more efficiently in the water, which means more speed and less effort on your part. If you are just starting out, it is important to learn good swimming techniques before taking on any kind of longer distance swims. 

The following article will give you some tips on how to improve your form while swimming freestyle – one of the best ways to improve as a swimmer overall!

5 Beginner Swim Tips!
The article provides a comprehensive overview of swimming techniques for beginners.
It emphasizes the importance of proper breathing techniques in swimming.
The article offers tips on building endurance and overcoming common challenges in swimming.
It provides guidance on choosing the right swimwear for beginner swimmers.
The article highlights different swimming strokes and their suitability for beginners.
It emphasizes the importance of building confidence in the water through practice and perseverance.
The article suggests incorporating swimming into a fitness routine for overall health and well-being.
It encourages beginners to explore different swimming techniques and find the stroke that suits them best.
The article provides valuable insights and resources for beginner swimmers to improve their skills and technique.
It emphasizes the need for proper instruction and guidance when starting swimming as a beginner.

Start With a Few Strokes

When you’re beginning to learn how to swim, start with a few strokes. Once you have the basics down, and can swim a couple of laps in the pool by yourself, it’s time to move on.

Start with freestyle (also known as front crawl). It’s the most popular stroke because it is efficient and uses all four limbs equally during each stroke cycle; therefore, it requires less effort than other strokes such as backstroke or breaststroke.

A great way for beginners who live near water is practicing in lakes or rivers–the motion of these bodies of water will help mimic what swimming feels like in open waters such as oceans or seas.

If you’re new to swimming and looking for guidance, our comprehensive guide for beginners is here to help. Dive in and discover the essential techniques and tips to start your swimming journey on the right foot.

Swim Freestyle

Keep your head down and glide more.

Adjust your breathing, so that it’s one continuous motion instead of stopping and starting.

Kick from the hip joint, not the knee; this will allow you to use more power with each kick while preventing strain on other muscles in your leg and hip area (which could lead to injury).

Do not lift your head to breathe; instead, roll onto one side at a time as needed so that only half of your face is above water when inhaling or exhaling–this will help prevent swallowing too much water while swimming!

Arm MovementAlternate arm pull with an extended reach and powerful pull.
BreathingBilateral breathing technique to maintain proper oxygen intake.
Body PositionHorizontal alignment with a streamlined body and relaxed neck.
KickFlutter kick from the hips for propulsion and stability.
Rhythm and TimingMaintain a smooth and consistent stroke rhythm and timing.

Keep Your Head Down

Keeping your head down is essential to swimming. If you lift your head to breathe, you’ll have to use much more energy to keep moving forward. In fact, if you’re not careful, this will make it very difficult for you to swim at all!

Keeping your face in the water also makes it easier for others around you to see where they are going while they’re swimming too (because they won’t be able to see over your head). Plus, if there are any obstacles in front of us when we’re swimming–like other swimmers or lifeguards–keeping our faces down means that we don’t accidentally bump into them!

Glide More

The glide is a key part of swimming. A glide is a kick that is not used for propulsion, but rather to recover and relax. It’s important you know how to glide in freestyle, backstroke and breaststroke so that you can incorporate this technique into your swimming routine.

Glide in Freestyle

To glide in freestyle, bend at the waist and place both hands on top of each other just below your chin (or as far down as they will go). While keeping them there throughout the entire length of your stroke cycle, lift one arm out straight behind you until it’s parallel with the surface of water – don’t rotate or move any other part of your body! 

Then bring it back down into position by bending at the waist again until both arms are parallel with each other once more before repeating on both sides again and again until you reach exhaustion 🙂

Are you a beginner swimmer eager to improve your skills? We’ve got you covered with our collection of 10 essential tips tailored specifically for beginners. From proper form to effective drills, these tips will help you make significant progress in the water.

Adjust Your Breathing

Now that you know how to breathe, it’s time to learn how to do so properly.

Breathe every third stroke. This is the most basic rule of swimming, and it applies whether you’re freestyle or breaststroke. 

It’s also important not only because it helps maintain a steady rhythm but also because it allows your body enough time between breaths so that you don’t run out of oxygen before reaching the other side of the pool (or lake). Breathing too frequently can cause hyperventilation and lead to dizziness or fainting–both dangerous conditions when trying to swim!

Open your mouth when inhaling through your nose during each breath cycle; this will allow water into your mouth as well as air into your lungs. Inhale deeply from below rather than shallowly from above–this will help with relaxation since deep breathing causes less stress on internal organs such as the heart than shallow inhalation does! 

Also try exhaling through pursed lips after taking in air; this creates a vacuum effect which helps empty residual water out off gills located inside nostrils before taking another breath cycle again…

Kick From the Hip Joint, Not the Knee

You should kick from the hip joint, not the knee. Kicking from your knees is a lot more likely to cause pain and injury. It’s also harder on your body because it requires more energy than swimming with a flutter kick.

To learn how to swim, you need only learn one movement: moving your legs back and forth in front of you (or moving them up and down if that’s easier). 

This can be done by kicking with either leg at any time during each stroke cycle without disrupting any other part of the stroke pattern–and it will make all kinds of sense when we get there!

Kick LocationHip joint
MovementFluid motion with minimal knee bend
PropulsionGenerates power and forward momentum
EfficiencyReduces drag and improves overall swimming speed
EquipmentFins (e.g., Speedo Biofuse Training Fins) can aid in practice

Do Not Lift Your Head to Breathe

Breathe every 3rd or 4th stroke, which is a good rule to follow no matter what stroke you’re swimming. If you are breathing every other stroke, then it means that when one arm is down in the water and moving forward, the other arm is bringing air into the lungs (as well as water). This can create drag and slow down your speed while swimming freestyle.

If possible try not to breathe on the side because this will cause resistance in the water since there’s more surface area exposed when compared with breathing forwards or backwards (i.e., if I’m swimming freestyle with my left arm extended under water).

Mastering the art of breathing is crucial for beginner swimmers. Learn about the importance of breathing in swimming and discover techniques to enhance your breathing efficiency. Take a deep breath and dive into the world of better swimming.

Use the Right Pulling Motion

The right pulling motion is the most effective way to move forward. It’s also the most efficient way to use your energy and body weight. This means you’ll be able to swim faster, longer, and with less effort than if you did not use this technique.

This type of pull is characterized by a smooth circular movement with both hands working together in harmony; it’s not just one arm moving back and forth over and over again like a windmill! 

The arms should be bent at about 90 degrees in order for them to maintain contact with water at all times (which creates resistance). When performing this type of stroke:

Roll Your Body for Each Breath

The roll is a basic swimming technique that you can use to breathe while you’re in the water. When you’re learning how to swim, it’s important that you learn how to breathe properly because this will help maintain your rhythm and prevent exhaustion.

The best way for beginners (and even advanced swimmers) to breathe when they are swimming is through their diaphragm rather than their chest or mouth (or nostrils). 

This means that instead of just lifting your head up out of the water every time you need air, try rolling your body over onto one side so that it faces toward the bottom of the pool while still holding on tightly with both hands; then roll back over onto your back again once enough oxygen has been taken into your lungs through respiration alone without any assistance from gravity itself!

Body RollRotate torso and hips to the side for each breath
AlignmentMaintain a streamlined and balanced body position
CoordinationCoordinate arm stroke and body roll for efficient breathing
Breathing SideAlternate breathing to both sides for balanced technique
Training AidSwim snorkel (e.g., FINIS Swimmer’s Snorkel) can assist

Mastering the body roll technique is crucial for efficient breathing during swimming. By rotating your torso and hips to the side for each breath, you can maintain proper alignment and coordination. To enhance your training, consider using a swim snorkel, such as the FINIS Swimmer’s Snorkel, to focus on improving your body roll and breathing technique.

Swimming Freestyle Is All About Coordination and Timing

Swimming freestyle is all about coordination and timing. You need to coordinate your breathing with your arm movements, as well as your breathing with your leg movements and body roll.

In order to get the most out of each stroke, it’s important that you learn how to breathe properly while swimming freestyle–and there are several different ways that people do this: some will inhale through their nose at the surface of the water, others will inhale through their mouth in preparation for taking another breath once they’ve submerged themselves under water again; still others may open both nostrils at once when they’re ready for air again after taking each stroke (or two or three). 

Whatever method works best for you should be used consistently throughout practice sessions so that muscle memory develops over time.

Building endurance is key to becoming a stronger swimmer. Check out our guide on how to build endurance as a beginner swimmer and unlock your full potential in the water. With these tips and training methods, you’ll be able to swim longer distances with ease.

It Is Important to Stretch Before You Start Swimming

Before you get started, it’s important to stretch. Stretching helps prevent injury and allows you to relax and prepare for your swim. 

It also keeps the muscles warm and flexible, which keeps them working efficiently during the activity. Stretching should be done both before and after swimming sessions–and even during if possible!

There are many different types of stretches that can work well for swimmers; here are some examples:

Chest stretch – Reach both arms straight out in front of you while holding onto something sturdy like a wall or chair (if no support is available), then bend at the waist until they touch their knees or thighs as far down as possible without forcing yourself into an uncomfortable position. 

Hold this position for 15 seconds before releasing slowly back up into standing position again; repeat three times total on each side.

Trunk rotation – While standing upright with feet shoulder width apart, reach one arm across body while twisting torso away from hand until reaching full extension at shoulder level behind head with palm facing forward.

Hip flexor stretch – Put leg up against wall with knee bent slightly under hip level; then use other foot planted firmly on ground behind planted leg so both feet face same direction as body faces toward wall behind planted foot.

Inner thigh lunge – With hands clasped together overhead (or holding onto railings), step forward into lunge position with one leg forward about two feet away from other leg which remains straightened out behind

Choosing the right swimwear can significantly impact your comfort and performance as a beginner swimmer. Our beginner’s guide to choosing the right swimwear provides valuable insights and recommendations to ensure you have the best gear for your swimming sessions. Dive into the world of stylish and functional swimwear options.

It Is Important to have Good Form While Swimming

Good form will help you prevent injury, improve your technique and increase speed. When swimming, it is important to keep the body straight with the head up. Holding the breath while swimming is also something that should be avoided as this can cause abdominal cramps or pain in the chest area.

When doing breaststroke, an arm lead kick should be used instead of a leg kick because it helps propel you forward faster than using only one leg at a time (like when doing freestyle). When performing backstroke or butterfly strokes, both legs should be extended outwards from under water at all times so there’s no break between strokes–this way you’ll get more momentum each time around!


I hope that you have learned a lot from this article. You can now go out there and start swimming, but remember to keep in mind that it is important to have good form while swimming.

Further Reading

Here are some additional resources to explore for further information on swimming techniques and skills:

  • Basic Swimming Strokes: A comprehensive guide that breaks down the fundamentals of different swimming strokes, including freestyle, backstroke, breaststroke, and butterfly. Learn the proper techniques for each stroke and improve your swimming efficiency.
  • Basic Swimming Techniques: Discover a wide range of basic swimming techniques and tips to enhance your skills in the water. From body positioning and kicking techniques to arm movements and breathing methods, this resource provides valuable insights for swimmers of all levels.
  • How to Swim – wikiHow: An extensive article on wikiHow that covers everything you need to know about swimming. From getting comfortable in the water to mastering different strokes, this resource offers step-by-step instructions and helpful illustrations to guide you through the learning process.


Here are some frequently asked questions about swimming techniques for beginners:

How do I improve my freestyle technique?

To improve your freestyle technique, focus on maintaining a streamlined body position, proper arm extension, and a consistent and rhythmic breathing pattern. Practice drills such as catch-up drill and finger drag drill to enhance your stroke efficiency.

What are the common mistakes beginners make in backstroke?

Some common mistakes beginners make in backstroke include improper body position, crossing the arms over the body, and inadequate kick propulsion. Ensure that your body is horizontal, arms are extended straight, and your kick is steady and consistent.

How can I overcome the fear of swimming in deep water?

Overcoming the fear of swimming in deep water requires gradual exposure and building confidence. Start by practicing in shallow water and gradually move to deeper areas. Use flotation devices or take swimming lessons to improve your skills and feel more comfortable in deep water.

What are the different breathing techniques in swimming?

The two main breathing techniques in swimming are bilateral breathing and unilateral breathing. Bilateral breathing involves alternating your breathing to both sides, while unilateral breathing focuses on breathing to one side only. Both techniques have their benefits, and the choice depends on personal preference and the swimming distance.

How do I prevent muscle cramps while swimming?

To prevent muscle cramps while swimming, ensure you are adequately hydrated before and during your swim. Warm-up properly before swimming, incorporate stretching exercises, and gradually increase your swimming intensity. If cramps occur, stop swimming, gently stretch the affected muscle, and rest until the cramp subsides.