Front crawl swimming technique

Tips on swimming front crawl or freestyle

Along with breaststroke, front crawl (or freestyle) is the most popular stroke in the swimming pool. It is the swim stroke that most of us want to get right but, because of the breathing issues that many of us face, it can end up being much more difficult to learn than it should be.

Here are some key points you should try and focus your attention on when attempting the front crawl or freestyle swimming stroke:

  • Learn to glide correctly when swimming.
  • Don’t overstretch in an attempt to get to the other end of the pool in as few swim strokes as possible.
  • Roll your hips from side to side as you move through the water.
  • Your legs should be kicking towards the wall, not the floor.
  • Keep ankles loose and your toes pointing away.
  • The head should be still and you should be looking at the floor, not directly ahead.
  • The arms should be loose and relaxed, not tensed.
    Front crawl techniques
  • As you bring the arm up at the beginning of the swim stroke keep it high and bend it at the elbow as you bring it down.
  • As that arm goes through the water it should spiral and lengthen as the other arm returns in the ‘catch’ position.
  • During this catch position the returning arm will be bent at the elbow, pointing upwards sweeping the water towards you, in what is known as ‘sculling’.
  • Learn to breathe out through your nose regularly.
  • When turning to breathe in, don’t lift your head, but keep it ‘resting on the water’.
  • As you breathe, look back in the direction you’ve come from.
  • Don’t snatch a breath, but instead breathe naturally and don’t force it.
  • There should be no tension throughout the stroke and you should try and make your body as ‘long’ as possible.
  • Remember to regard the stroke as one movement with all the components working seamlessly together as you swim.

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