How To Swim Front Crawl

Want to learn how to swim front crawl? Front crawl is also known as freestyle because it's the fastest swimming stroke, and therefore most common in freestyle swimming competitions. While the stroke itself is not complicated, it can be difficult for a beginner to learn the proper breathing techniques required for the front crawl.

  1. Lay face-down on the water, aligning your legs and hips with your shoulders. Keep your body close to the surface of the water. Try practicing your stroke parallel to a wall without touching it to ensure that you are keeping your stroke and body shape tight and narrow.
  2. Move your legs in long, fast kicks. Keep your knees slightly bent. Your feet should break the surface of the water with only a small splash. Kicking does not provide the main power in the front crawl, but will help you keep your balance and direction.
  3. Put one hand in the water in front of your head. Stretch out the arm as far as possible. Your hand should hit the water thumb-first; that will reduce the amount of splashing. Bend your elbow and push your hand through the water until it reaches your leg. This is the movement that will propel you forward as you swim the front crawl. Alternate your strokes, with one arm coming out of the water as the other moves towards your leg.
  4. Practice a good breathing technique. Beginners will usually breathe by turning their head to the side in the middle of a stroke. This can throw off your balance and slow down your front crawl. Ideally, you should breathe into the bow wave, a pocket of air created by your head as you move through the water. With practice, you will learn to breathe without lifting your head far out of the water.
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