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How To Breathe When Swimming
It is very important to know that breathing is an essential part of swimming. There’s a wide misconception among beginner swimmers that holding your breath when swimming is the correct way but what you should learn is to control your breath. By practicing proper breathing swimming techniques, you can improve your lung capacity and performance when swimming. Let’s learn how to breathe when swimming.
How To Breathe When Swimming – Kickboard Drills
Key Points of Kickboard Drills
- Start breathing two times
- Once you master breathing two times, focus on breathing one time
- Don’t lift your head too high
- Don’t pause your kicks
Grab the kickboard with both of your hands and kick with your legs to move forward in the water. Raise your head in front of you and breathe two times at the beginning of your practice. Your goal is to breathe one time at every stroke but it will take time to perfect so you should start with breathing two times. Always put your face back down in the water after each breath and don’t lift your head too high. Lifting your head too high above the surface of the water will sink your legs.
Now you should focus on getting one breath at a time if you are good with two breaths. Kick with your feet till you need a breath, lift your head and take in one breath and put your face back down in the water. Don’t worry if you find yourself pausing your kicks while taking a breath. It’s very common among beginner swimmers. Try to practice kicking continuously even if you are taking a breath. Kicking continuously is very important when we add in arm movement to our stroke.
How To Breathe When Swimming – Pineapple Drills
Key Points of Kickboard Pineapple Drills
- Learn to keep one arm extended when breathing
- Don’t lift your head too high
- Keep one arm extended to the front
- Breathe behind you
Now you’re going to learn pineapple drills. The pineapple drill is how you get your breath on your back. You will take a step back and breathe more than one time in this drill at the beginning.
Roll to your back to get a breath. It’s okay to take two, three, or four breaths at a time. Take as many breaths as you need till you are comfortable rolling back to your belly. Eventually, focus on getting one breath when you roll to your back. This will take some time and practice to master.
One Arm Extended
Now when you roll onto your back keep one arm extended behind you. With one arm extended behind you, you’re going to be able to breathe quicker and continue swimming easier. It will also keep your body balanced in the water. You should always focus on front-quadrant swimming. Front quadrant swimming simply means that there is always one of your hands in one of the front quadrants (1 and 2) at any one point in time.
Breathing on Your Side
Instead of rolling all the way to your back, you should practice rolling onto your side. Keep one arm extended out front and roll onto your side. Take two breaths and once you mastered two breaths, roll to your side and take one breath.
Tip: Exhale under the water and inhale to the side to cut your breathing time by 50%.
Exhaling under the water will help you breathe more quicker when your face is out of the water.
Do not lift your head too high when you breathe to the side in freestyle. Your head should not be too high in the air or your ears should and shoulder should not be completely out of the water when breathing to the side. Lifting your head too high out of the water will sink your legs and lower body. It’s best if you keep your ear on your shoulder when breathing to the side. One-fourth of your face should always be under the water when you rotate your body and head to the side. This will help you maintain proper bodyline in the water and will also prevent your lower body from sinking below.
The last step of breathing in freestyle is to breathe behind you. A lot of people breathe to their front or to their side but breathing side and slightly behind you is recommended. This is because it’s easier to rotate your head downwards and behind instead of straight to the side. The water will not enter your mouth if you breathe behind you.
How To Breathe When Swimming – Breaststroke Drills
You can start learning breaststroke breath if you are not comfortable or you find freestyle swimming too challenging. Breaststroke breath is easier for most of beginner swimmers because it’s in front of you. A lot of beginner swimmers find it more natural and easier to breathe in front of them instead of their side. The only drawback to breaststroke breath is that you lift your head too high which is going to sink your legs and makes it harder to swim faster. Breaststroke needs strong kicks to move forward in the water. Most beginners find breaststroke difficult because of the kicks.
Remember to practice regularly and if you don’t understand any step or if you’re unable to swim, feel free to contact us via email or WhatsApp number by going to this contact page.
Watch the following video to learn how to breathe when swimming in detail.
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