Learn to Swim

Swimming is one of life’s pleasures. Our swimming tips help you get the most out of your time in the water whether you are learning how to swim for the first time or want to improve particular swimming strokes. For beginners, but also more experienced swimmers, we provide tips that will quickly fix certain aspects of your technique and swim strokes.

1. If you are learning to swim, practice in a safe environment. A supervised swimming pool is less overwhelming that open water as you can see what’s below the surface.
2. Look up swimming drill progressions online. If you are unsure on particular movements to make in a stroke, there are a large number of videos you can watch.
3. If you feel comfortable wearing them, swimming goggles can help you be more relaxed as you can keep your eyes open and protect them from chlorine in public swimming pools.
4. When learning or improving a swimming stroke, break down the complex motions into their components and practice the components independently. This can mean practising arm motions independently from leg motions. Or practice the arm motions one side at a time.
5. When practising isolated stroke components, use swimming aids to support your body in the water.
6. You can also practice isolated stroke components out of the water. Rehearse the new motions at home and even lie on the floor to try out the swimming technique you want to master. Practice with an online learning resource running at the same time.
7. Use visualisation when practising stroke motions at home to make it easier for you to transfer your knowledge to the pool.
8. Have fun while you teach yourself to swim.
9. If you are keen to improve your swimming skills further, ask a friend to take photographs of you while swimming. Seeing yourself swimming is a great way to become aware of your mistakes.
10. If you can find a good swim coach, follow their swimming lessons. Ask for recommendations for a good swim coach or educate yourself about swimming first, using online resources, so you can assess a coach’s strengths and weaknesses.
11. When you learn how to swim, relaxed breathing can be difficult at first due to nervousness, this is when learning to swim in a class or in a supervised pool is helpful.
12. If you want your child to learn to swim, consider teaching them the skill yourself, it is a fun bonding experience for you both. If you’re a little nervous there are guides online that suggest what to do and most important what not to do as when teaching your child to swim
13. If you’re not sure if swimming is right for you or someone in your family, know that swimming is great for keeping joints supple and muscles toned since the water offers support and resistance, not found in a gym workout.
14. You’re never to old to learn. It is possible to learn to swim when you are 50-plus.
15. Forget modesty and get a form-fitting swimsuit, men and women.
16. People with disabilities can find freedom of movement when swimming, as well as being able to exercise muscles that are not frequently used. Swimming can increase the heart rate and burn calories, be very relaxing and fun. Ask at your local pool for further advice.
17. If you catch yourself holding your breathe because of anxiety about being in the water, take a breath and put your face into the water, and start slowly exhaling bubbles. This will help you relax and enjoy your swimming exercise that much more.
18. The more muscles you relax, the more energy you can put into learning, the faster you will swim
19. The most common breathing problem for freestyle swimmers is not exhaling under the water. If you exhale under the water between breaths you only have to inhale when you go to breathe. This makes things much easier, mostly because it also relaxes you.
20. Only turn your head to breathe. In between breaths, hold your head still in one position. Keeping your head still as your body rotates helps with co-ordination. If you struggle to keep your head still, visualise a glass of your favourite drink is sitting on the top of your head and you have to make sure it won’t spill.
21. For those who develop a stiff neck whilst swimming, it’s probably because of lifting or over-rotating your head to breathe which strains the neck muscles. Improve your breathing technique should stop the stiffness and it should disappear.
22. If when you swim you breathe only to one side, it’s likely your rotation will be poor to your non-breathing side, which mean that you will not swim in a straight line.