It’s easy to get frustrated and end up in a rut with your swimming where you see little progress. Here are 5 tips of things you can do today to help improve your swimming.
1. Video: Get some video of you swimming and do a bit of video analysis. Either do the analysis yourself or get a coach to help. If you have a waterproof camera then its worth trying to get some underwater and above water footage. But if not above water will give plenty of feedback for you to improve. It only needs to be a short clip of 6-10 strokes. In the UK it can be difficult to do this in public swimming pools but you never know if you ask around some pools allow it. If you swim with a club then the club volunteers are usually more than happy to help. If none of that is viable go to a lake and get some footage of you swimming open water.
2. Learn how to focus. Notice what you’re thinking about when you’re swimming. Are you thinking about anything to do with your stroke and your movement through the water? Or are you spending more time thinking about the latest episode of The Hand Maid’s Tale or tonight’s dinner? Learning how to hold your focus on one part of the stroke and hold your attention on how your movement feels will help to increase your awareness in the water. Which will help you to learn how to control your stroke to be more efficient.
3. Do some drills. Break the stroke down into smaller parts and practice some drills. This will help you to isolate small movements, change movement patterns and then integrate that back into your stroke.
4. Count strokes per length. Being able to count strokes per length is a great3 way to improve your focus but also helps to raise your awareness of what’s going on in your stroke. If your strokes per length have decreased for the same pace then that means you’ve gained efficiency. Doing it regularly will help you to notice when your form has dropped off or when a focal point is having an effect and making you swim better.
5. Visit a coach for a tune up of your stroke. Even the most accomplished swimmers get into bad habits and benefit from a coach to help them tidy up their movement again. Its really easy to lose your form or get into bad movement habits that you don’t notice especially after a long time out of the water or an injury.