Mastering Freestyle Technique

Mastering Freestyle Technique

Freestyle, the most dynamic of swimming strokes, demands a meticulous approach to technique for optimal speed. To enhance your child’s freestyle efficiency, start with a thorough examination of the foundational elements. Ensure your child maintains a horizontal body position with the head in the correct position, reducing drag and maximizing forward movement. Focusing on proper shoulder rotation, arm recovery and hand entry, along with a strong flutter kick, sets the stage for efficient and speedy freestyle.

Correct Stroke Pattern

Understanding the correct stroke pattern is important to swim more efficiently in freestyle. The arm pull pattern and correct hand pitch at each stage of the underwater pull will play a major role in technique improvement. Incorporation of drills by the coach that emphasize correct arm mechanics, encouraging a high elbow catch and an effective pull is important. Implement leg-focused exercises to enhance the flutter kick, promoting propulsion without excessive energy expenditure. Gradually introduce interval training to build endurance, a key factor in sustaining speed over longer distances.

The Art of Breathing

Efficient breathing is a linchpin in the quest for speed in freestyle. Teach your child the art of rhythmic breathing, synchronising inhalation and exhalation with arm strokes. Emphasize learning to breathe on both sides of the body. Introduce hypoxic training, gradually increasing the duration between breaths during practice to enhance lung capacity and endurance. A well-mastered breathing technique translates to sustained speed and race-day success.

Our Stroke Model and Skills Videos provide a clear visual representation of correct technique, allowing swimmers to see the stroke movements and body position throughout different stages of the stroke. These videos come with commentary and annotations from former Australian Head Coach Leigh Nugent and provide families with the most up-to-date details around technique in freestyle and other competitive strokes.

Why sculling is an important skill in swimming

Why sculling is an important skill in swimming

Sculling is an important skill in swimming because it helps swimmers develop better water awareness, improve their feel for the water, and enhance overall stroke technique. Sculling involves making small, controlled movements with the hands and forearms to generate lift and propulsion in the water.

Here are several reasons why sculling is important in swimming:

  1. Water Feel: Sculling helps swimmers develop a better sense of the water. It allows them to feel the resistance and pressure of the water against their hands and arms, enabling them to make adjustments to their technique for a more efficient and streamlined swim.
  2. Body Positioning: Sculling can assist swimmers in maintaining proper body positioning in the water. By adjusting the angle and pitch of the hands and forearms, swimmers can fine-tune their body position to reduce drag and move through the water more efficiently.
  3. Balance and Stability: Sculling exercises improve a swimmer’s balance and stability. The controlled movements engage core muscles and help swimmers maintain a horizontal and streamlined body position, which is essential for reducing drag and increasing speed.
  4. Propulsion: While sculling is not a primary source of propulsion, it can contribute to forward movement. When integrated into strokes, such as the freestyle, backstroke or breaststroke, sculling movements can help maintain momentum during specific phases of the stroke cycle.
  5. Skill Development: Sculling is a fundamental skill that lays the foundation for more advanced swimming techniques. Mastering sculling helps swimmers progress to more complex drills and strokes, such as the butterfly and breaststroke, as they build a better understanding of how to “feel” the water effectively.
  6. Injury Prevention: Proper sculling technique promotes a smoother and more controlled swim, potentially reducing the risk of overuse injuries that may occur with inefficient technique in the water.

In summary, sculling is important in swimming because it helps swimmers develop essential water skills, improve stroke technique, and enhance overall efficiency and performance in the water. It is a foundational skill that contributes to a swimmer’s mastery of more advanced swimming techniques.