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5 Freestyle drills to help you swim smooth

5 Freestyle drills to help you swim smooth.


It does not matter if you are a beginner or an elite swimmer, you can always benefit from doing drills, that is because your stroke will never be perfect.


Having said that, there are some common mistakes that most of us do during our freestyle technique. So we will go over some drills to fix them.




Finger-tip drag.

This drill will help you keep a high elbow when you recover the arm. This will also help you feel the water and give you immediate feedback as to where your hand is entering the water. You should also keep a relaxed wrist and fingers to save up energy.

This high elbow recovery is the most effective way to carry your arm back in front.


3 strokes and glide.

Gliding is an important part of the stroke, specially in distances over a 100. Doing 3 strokes and gliding for about 6 kicks will help you improve your gliding position.

Notice the position of your hands and head and adjust if they are causing frontal drag.



Some of us don’t rotate enough. This goes hand in hand with the gliding. You need a good rotation in order to glide and to grab more water with each stroke.

So practice gliding and rotating your shoulders, then come back and rotate again before taking your next stroke.






Underwater recovery.

This will help you feel the frontal drag. It will help your body understand the importance of the pull.

Try to optimize your pull by grabbing all the water you can while reducing the frontal drag of your other arm by positioning your hand to be always pointing to the front.


Sculling High elbow.

To pull water backwards from the beginning of your stroke, you must have a high elbow on the first part of the stroke.

So, try sculling three times and not moving your elbow.

Just use your forearm and hands. Then do a normal stroke to change arms.

Swim fast!

By Emiliano Mora

Last updated Jan. 4, 2023


Edited by:

Emiliano Mora and Bruno Moreno Gutiérrez