I started this past Sunday swimming at a relative’s pool. I was able to do five days of swimming. I swam one forty minute session, four thirty minute sessions, and one hour session. In addition, was able to get in some open water swimming as well. Was doing the freestyle, backstroke, breaststroke, butterfly, and attempted the side stroke. I am so excited to jump back into swimming joining the YMCA today. I feel five days is too much. However, with some finagling can get in four days with five days of running. In addition, I can possibly get in two days of lifting and one day of using the bike at the gym. Question is my breathing was a big reason I stopped swimming. I use to take a breath every other stroke. Felt through my stroke off. Now feel can do three breaths down a 25 foot pool. Question is when I breathe started turning my head. Now worked it where my hips turn to breath. Is this the proper way to do this? Bit apprehensive of jumping in the pool whipping out butterfly’s making waves and doing a poor attempt at it. Question is anyone do butterfly’s? Don’t want to screw up someone work out being whipped by waves. In October plan on taking month long swim lessons just to get some tips to work on my stroke after getting comfortable in the water. I am planning on joining the master swim team at the YMCA in December. Then in the summer close to home there is open water swim sessions. I like to swim a 10K by the fall. Any tips for a newbie will read the board. Don’t feel ready to start workouts. Figure for the month of September will do four days of swimming three thirty minute sessions and one hour session of freestyle. Then the following week do three sessions of thirty minutes. Then rotate throughout October. Come November plan on doing workouts and incorporating different strokes.
So I'm not sure if you still need help with your question but I figured answering wouldn't hurt. I was a competitive swimmer for 14 years and just finished 4 years of Division 1 swimming in college so if you have more questions I would love to help!!
Anyway, as far as stroke technique, freestyle is actually not swum on your stomach like most think. It is more of a side to side body roll. You can probably find some good videos on Youtube but here are some basics of free technique:
-look at the bottom of the pool when not breathing
-when taking a breath, only rotate your head to the side towards each lane rope (make sure not to lift your head forward)
-bilateral breathing is a good idea but not necessary (meaning breathing to both sides like every 3 strokes take one breath)
-circle breathing (make sure to breath in mouth and out nose at all times)
-every stroke you take your whole body will go with this movement (your belly button will actually face the wall of the pool each stroke)
-keep your head still when not breathing (your body follows where your head leads so moving it all over will cause you to do double the work because you will be going down the lane like a snake back and forth)
-don't bend your knees much (power comes from your upper leg muscle, not calf)
-focus on the up and down motion and don't cross feet over eachother like a pair of sissors
-small quick kicks
-"S" pull (like it sounds this is an S motion with your arm)
-steps: 1. hand out in front of you
2. pull out away from body with elbow bent and hand facing botom of the pool but towards your feet
3. pull back in towards body still bending elbow
4. pull under your body somewhat
5. pull under and past your hips and flick your fingers back out of the water
-bend elbow in and out of water
-bend out: looks like a mountain with elbow high and finger tips going right over the surface of the water; then enter in front of your head fingers first and glide through rolling shoulders to full extension
-bend under: while doing "S" pull
*Hopefully this isn't too wordy, below I attached some good youtube videos to watch. Pay close attention to head position, breathing, body position, and the "S" pull.
If you want me to explain any other strokes I would be more than happy to!