Today’s video focuses on teaching freestyle to adult beginners. We’ll start by looking at the 3 most common mistakes that beginning freestyle swimmers often make.
1st – Many beginners hold their head too high. They look forward when they should be looking down.
2nd – Many beginners bend their knees too much and tend to bicycle as opposed to kicking with a straighter up and down motion.
3rd – Many beginners push straight down with their pull in an attempt to hold themselves up. Instead of pushing the water back to pull themselves down the pool.
If you add these 3 mistakes together, you end up with a stroke that is more vertical than horizontal. Next, we’ll take a look at each of these mistakes a little closer, starting with head position. With most beginning swimmers, the higher the head, the lower the feet. When your head goes up and your feet sink down. Relaxation is also very important, watch here as I tense up my shoulders. My face is still in the water, but even with my ears out, my feet start to sink.
Next, we’ll look at the kick. You want to kick all the way from the hip with a pointed yet relaxed toe. Don’t hack at the water with a bent knee, or kick with a locked knee and rigid foot. Instead, you want to be able to push the water back and forth with long, flat foot and a relaxed flexible leg. This way, instead of bicycling my legs down to the bottom, I’m keeping my legs long and kicking the water down to the bottom with a nice pointed toe.
Finally, we’re going to look at the arm stroke. Proper head position and kick will help us float better and allow us to focus on pulling ourselves down the pool. Remember, good body position is what keeps you afloat not your arm strokes. Push the water backwards towards your toes not down to the bottom of the pool.
If we focus on these 3 key items, we can transition from a somewhat vertical and inefficient stroke to a flatter, more efficient stroke that will enable us to learn side breathing so much easier.