Quick-Fix Swimming Drills

Take your basic swimming technique to the next level

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These swimming drills are designed to force us to focus on one specific part of our swimming technique.  If that specific part happens to be your weakness and you are focusing on the finer details of that part, then you are a very short step away from unlocking the full potential of your swimming stroke.

Correct swimming technique allows us to swim longer distances with less effort but if the basic stroke technique is not correct then swimming instantly becomes hard work.

Discover some example simple swimming drills below...

1. Front Crawl Drill

Alternating arm pull, holding a float.

front crawl drill to improve arm technique

Key Actions

  • Finger tips in first
  • Brush your hand past your thigh
  • Pull fast under the water
  • Elbow out first
  • Reach over the water surface

Technical Focus

  • Clean entry with fingertips first and thumb side down
  • Fingers should be together
  • Each arm pulls through to the hips
  • Elbow leads out first
  • Fingers clear the water on recovery

Common Faults

  • Fingers are too wide apart
  • Pull is short and not to the thigh
  • Lack of power in the pull
  • Arms are too straight on recovery
  • Hand entry is wide of shoulder line

Click here and discover more front crawl drills to help fine-tune your technique.

2. Breaststroke Drill

Push and glide adding arm pulls

Breaststroke swimming drill to improve arm technique

Key Actions

  • Keep your hands under the water
  • Pull your body through the water
  • Tuck your elbows into your sides after each pull
  • Stretch your arms forward with hands together

Technical Focus

  • Arms and hands should remain under water
  • Elbows should be tucked in after each pull
  • Arms should extend forward into a glide position
  • Body position should be maintained throughout

Common Faults

  • Arms pull past the shoulders
  • Arms fail to extend full forward
  • Hands come out of the water
  • Arms extend forward too far apart 
  • Arms fail to bend during the pull

Click here for more breaststroke drills and take your technique to the next level

3. Backstroke Drill

Arm pulls with pull buoy between the legs

Backstroke drill to improve arm technique

Key Actions

  • Arms brush past your ear
  • Fingers closed together
  • Continuous arm action
  • Pull hard through the water and down to your side
  • Allow your legs to ‘sway’ side to side

Technical Focus

  • Arm action is continuous and steady
  • Arms stretch all the way over and brush past the ear
  • Arms pull down to the thigh
  • Shoulders rock evenly side to side

Common Faults

  • Pause between arm pulls
  • Arms are pulling out too wide, not brushing the ear 
  • Arms are not pulling down to the side
  • Arms pull too deep under the water

 Click here for some more backstroke drills

4. Butterfly Stroke Drills

Arm pulls using a pull buoy 

butterfly drill to improve arm pull technique

Key Actions

  • Thumbs go in first
  • Pull hard through the water
  • Pull past your thighs
  • Throw your arms over the water

Technical Focus

  • Arms move simultaneously
  • Fingers closed together
  • Thumbs enter the water first
  • Hands enter the water in line with the shoulders
  • Hands push past the thigh
  • Hands clear water surface on recovery

Common Faults

  • Arms are too straight
  • Arms are not pulling back to the thighs 
  • Hands fail to clear the water

Click here to discover more butterfly drills that will enhance and improve your basic technique.

Download 82 different swimming drills covering all 4 basic swimming strokes.

Packed with professional coaching points, technique tips and common mistakes to avoid, theses swimming drills contained in 'The Swimming Strokes Book' will teach you exactly what each part of your body should be doing when you swim. 

Instantly download 'The Swimming Strokes Book' to your mobile or tablet device and start fine-tuning your swimming technique today. 


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