What can I do to help?

If you have time to practice swimming in your spare time here are some things you could work on.
Most of these skills can be done without access to a pool, although putting them to practice in the water is obviously preferable. All swimmers need different pointers, however, these are some of the common areas that need improvement. These are all exercises we use in our lessons so they should know what they are doing. If you need any more information just ask.

Front Crawl – Catch up. Hold a float in front of you. Swim normal front crawl, swapping which hand is on the float. Choose one hand to be your breathing hand - every time it let’s go of the float, turn your head and take a breath. The other hand is your bubble hand. Every time it lets go – leave your face in the water and blow bubbles.

Back Crawl – 6,6. One arm up, one arm down. Count to six seconds and then swap the arms over
using normal back crawl arms. Count to six seconds and swap them again.

Breaststroke – Streamlined kick. Hands together, arms straight out in front of you. Face in and kick Breaststroke legs. After each kick, stay still for 2 to 3 seconds
Practice Breaststroke legs. Your legs should be doing identical movements. If not then sit on the floor/sofa/bed. Bend your legs, turn your feet out, open legs into a star shape, bring your legs together and stay still for 2 to 3 seconds before starting again. Practice pushing with the sole of your foot just under your heels, rather than using the whole foot.
Practice Timing – Glide, breathe, kick, glide.
Glide/stay still for 2 to 3 seconds
Move your arms and take a breath
Face in, arms back in front and kick (if standing up use one leg or learn to fly)
Glide/stay still for 2 to 3 seconds

Butterfly – Try doing your Butterfly/Dolphin kick on your front and back.
When practicing arms try keeping them as wide and low as possible. You don’t need to breathe every stroke, try and do a few arms before taking a breath.

Surface dive – try and do a handstand at the shallow end. Then try it in deeper water – try going straight down (not diagonally) and have your legs coming out of the water on the way down.

Forward roll – head between your legs and out the other side, skip backwards with your arms, blow bubbles out of your nose.

Sculling – Put your arms straight out in front of you. Move your arms so your hands make a shallow U shape – like you are conducting an orchestra.

Treading water – ride a bicycle with really wide pedals. Keep your arms wide and scull at the side (see above)

Diving – hands in first then everything else with toes last. If you jump in feet first, try a kneeling dive, trying to ‘handstand’ into the water. No matter what, when you hit the water stay as still and straight as possible with your arms in front of you.