Avoid The Most Common Swimming Mistakes

Doctors and experts recommend swimming because it uses every part of your body, making it one of the most comprehensive sports around. Find out how to avoid the most common swimming mistakes.
Avoid The Most Common Swimming Mistakes

Last update: 14 November, 2019

Swimming is one of the most comprehensive sports and it’s recommended by experts. Although it can seem very simple, there are common swimming mistakes that you should avoid.

What’s more, there are techniques and exercises to help you get the best results. Furthermore, it’s important to follow advice and recommendations to avoid making the most common swimming mistakes.

Learn more about the highlights of this sport to fully enjoy it, the next time you go to the pool.

The six most common swimming mistakes

Every swimmer is different and they will use specific movements for better performance. The slightest change in a movement can alter a swimmer’s efficiency and even lead to a permanent injury. As such, the most common swimming mistakes tend to involve the following techniques:

Keeping stroke lengths at a minimum

This is one of the most common swimming mistakes since people think it’ll make them go faster. However, speed is a result of the momentum from your legs and arms in the water. To avoid this mistake, extend your arm and hand as far as you can. You’ll enhance the movement in your hips, improve your breathing rate, and reduce excessive stroke repetition.

Incorrect body alignment

woman swimming laps outdoor pool

While swimming, keeping a proper posture is important for reducing the risk of injury. What’s more, it’ll help you to maintain your speed in the water. The movements that can affect your posture include:

  • Swimming with your head extended: it makes you stiff and leads to forced movements. To correct it, keep looking down; this way, you’ll reduce the tension in your vertebra and you’ll improve your posture.
  • Incorrect wrist movement: prevents the water from gliding. To prevent this, make sure your wrist stays straight.

Keep in mind that your body should be in a raised, properly aligned, relaxed, and extended position. To maintain this posture, you have to keep your face down, and your torso extended.

Inadequate breathing

As with posture, breathing is an important factor when you submerge yourself. What’s more, it’s also one of the most common swimming mistakes. Lifting your head too much, makes this activity harder than it needs to be, and causes tension in your neck. Another mistake is to hold your breath before going under the water.

people swimming laps indoor most common swimming mistakes
You can avoid incorrect breathing by constantly exhaling and taking advantage of your body’s movement to inhale.

Incorrect positioning of feet

When your ankles are flexed, it increases the resistance. Ideally, you should kick with your arches as elongated as possible, taking advantage of the leverage that it provides. You might experience cramps, but with constant exercise, they’ll soon disappear, and you’ll gain more flexibility.

Incorrect leg movement

Another common swimming mistake is kicking too much with your legs (and knees). Also, crossing your legs or increasing the space between your legs increases friction and reduces your effectiveness while swimming.

To avoid this mistake, you should practice your kicking motion, and make sure you push with your hips. This will boost your speed and reduce physical exhaustion.

Arching your back

If there’s inadequate coordination between your torso, hips, and legs, they can sink, requiring more strength for kicking. This will lead to you arching your lower back, and possibly causing injuries.

To avoid this from happening, be mindful of your posture and try to lift your glutes while pushing and pulling. This way, you’ll improve your speed and reduce any tension in your lower back.

Tips for preventing common swimming mistakes

Swimming is a useful sport to learn; it’s necessary in an emergency situation for survival and for your health. In addition, it can offer countless benefits. As such, pay attention to the following recommendations to avoid the most common swimming mistakes:

  • Use the right equipment for your workout. This will help you perfect the techniques and avoid mistakes that can lead to injuries in both the short, and long term.
  • Start with simpler techniques like the front crawl or the back crawl. Then, move on to more challenging styles, like the butterfly stroke.
  • Warm up and stretch before working out.
  • With the help of an instructor, practice breathing techniques to improve your resistance and movement.

In conclusion, you can avoid the most common swimming mistakes using adequate techniques for any level. Follow these recommendations and you’ll be guaranteed to see the results you expect.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.