When you go to the pool, do you just swim back and forth continuously? Do you only know how to swim freestyle or the front crawl? If so, this isn’t helping you swim faster. So, we want to help you!
In this video, we’re sharing the 5 reasons why you should swim all 4 strokes every time that you are in the water.
We’ll talk about what the 4 strokes are, how you can get started, and show an example beginner swim workout that incorporates everything we discussed in the pool.
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5 Reasons Why You Should Swim More Than Freestyle
1 – Improves Your Feel Of The Water
By mixing up your stroke, or focusing on a kick or technique drill, you will feel more comfortable in the water and it will improve your body positioning, breathing skills, and your pull.
2 – Improves Your Freestyle
When you focus on your non-dominant strokes, such as breaststroke or backstroke – you are working new muscles that engage different parts of your body. This helps you get stronger!
This strength training in different muscles actually really helps your freestyle stroke. So it’s a win-win for all your strokes!
The 4 Strokes:
3 – Improves Endurance & Burns More Calories
By swimming new strokes and awakening new muscle groups, you will get a great full-body workout every time you swim. This endurance work will increase your heart rate, improve your aerobic capacity and burn more calories.
The new strokes will force you to focus on different areas of your body, so you can train muscles like your hip flexors, abs, glutes, lats and hamstrings.
These new exercises will definitely help you feel more stronger and comfortable in the water.
Related: 10 Health Benefits of Swimming
4 – Prevents Injury
When you swim freestyle back and forth continuously, you might be at a higher risk for a shoulder injury. All that repetitive motion builds up and could cause some serious rotation issues.
If you mix up your workout with breaststroke, backstroke, and kicking drills you will give your shoulders a rest and break up that repetitive motion. These new strokes will help you build strength in your shoulder stability, and balance.
We also highly recommend incorporating strength training outside of the pool, also known as Dryland Training in swimming terms. Here are some ideas.
5 – It’s More Fun!
We all know that swimming continuous freestyle back and forth for a long time can get really boring.
Switch things up! Try new exercises, and your workouts will be much more interesting because you will engage your body and your mind at the same time, while mastering a new skill. We promise you, it will make your swim training a whole lot more fun!
Related: 5 Drills For Beginners
How To Get Started
We recommend switching 10-20% of your workout to a new stroke or drill that is not freestyle. When you start, try to swim just 25-50 yards or meters in a new stroke. You can try backstroke, breaststroke, or sidestroke. We recommend holding off on butterfly until you’re feeling really strong 🙂
Once you get comfortable, you can try a FRIM set, which means 25 yards or meters of each stroke in this order:
Here is a 2,000 meter workout you can try. For intermediate swimmers, it should take 40-60 minutes to complete. If you are a beginner swimmer, you can always decrease the amount of repetitions or decrease the distances so that it suits your style.
Just remember, the important thing is to incorporate different strokes and energy zones into your workout.
- 1 x 300 Freestyle
- 4 x 50s Backstroke/Freestyle
- 4 x 25s Drill Fist Drill
- 1 x 200 FRIM (50 Free, 50 Back, 50 Breast, 50 Free)
- 10 x 100s Freestyle (Threshold)
- 4 x 50s Breaststroke/Freestyle
We hope you enjoyed this video and these great tips! Send us an email if you have more questions at firstname.lastname@example.org.