Remember that in a competitive sport of this nature, the least amount of time can be the difference between taking a winner’s cup home.
Since there is no doubt that you want to be placed first, let's take a look at how competitive and recreational swimmers can improve the front crawl technique.
1. Focus on your breathing
When it comes to perfecting your front call technique, you need to consider all the factors that can make a difference in your overall performance.
Obviously, how you use your arms, legs, head, and core strength will have an effect. However, breathing is also one of the primary areas that will make a difference.
Once you feel comfortable with the front crawl technique, take the time to focus only on your breathing. Notice how you are currently breathing and try to adapt to the following method.
You should breathe on alternate sides during every third hit. To allow you to successfully ingest the right amount of air, place your ear on your shoulder and cheek on the surface of the water.
By doing this, you won't consume much air (or very little) before you need to return to the surface.
2. Use the correct head position
The more efficient you are, the better you become. To stay efficient in the front-crawl position, you must keep your head still and in line with your body.
Also, remember to make sure that the water level is between the eyebrows and the hairline when you are in motion.
With your head in the pool, keep looking forward and down. We strongly recommend wearing swimming goggles to protect your eyes from chlorine and dirt.
You don't want your head to be too low or too high because this will create more tension in your neck and make it difficult for you to swim.
3. Ensure adequate arm work
With the front crawl style, your arms should always rotate and be continuous to maintain steady movement. Also, when all hands enter the water, you should do this between the central line of the head and the shoulder line.
Make sure to look to see if you are raising your arm above your head in the correct position, and if not, adjust it accordingly.
The hands should also be tilted with the palm facing down, while the elbows should be folded and positioned slightly above the hand during each stroke.
Your hands must be stretched in front of you first before holding and pulling it onto a large paddle surface of your hand. During this stage, you should push your hands towards the pool floor. Keep your fingers together, too, as this will create a more efficient surface area.
With practice, you can build strength and move smoothly through the water.
4. Create a simplified body
Keep your body parallel to the water and create a possible flat profile. This will make it more efficient and reduce resistance.
Your lower body should also be placed on a good level. If it is too low or too high, this will require you to work harder and consume more energy.
To avoid this, place your back just below the surface and try to maintain a steady position when competing.
If your body stays in the same place, it will be much easier to work on the arms and kicking technique, rather than losing focus when trying to hold yourself properly.
5. Master your kick
First, keep your feet and ankles as relaxed as possible to get the best front crawl kick. If it is stiff, you will lose the flowing motion you want. It is also recommended to kick legs from the hips alternately with six kicks to one arm. This will help balance your body. Most importantly, never kick your knees as this will break your profile and slow you down.
Remember, most of the thrust you use with this stroke comes from your arms and upper body. However, if your legs are not too low in the water and your heels break the surface, this will also improve the front crawl style dramatically.
Finally, keep your legs close together. If they are far apart, it will create more resistance.
img source: wikipedia
Also Read: Check out five significant types of swimming styles!