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Breakwater Freestyle 1

Objective: Learn the basics of efficient freestyle technique. Backstroke is also taught, but the focus is on freestyle.

Participants: This program is for newer swimmers, triathletes, open-water swimmers, or competitive swimmers who want to develop efficient freestyle technique.

This program is not for experienced competitive swimmers who want to shave a second or two from their 100-yard time (see Breakwater Freestyle 2). Also, it is not for fearful swimmers who cannot put their face into the water comfortably (see the Private Lessons page).

Training Method: There is a coach for each lane, with up to five swimmers in a lane. Students are taught progressive sets of drills that "burn in" correct movement patterns, one aspect of the stroke at a time. As the swimmers practice, the coaches continually capture video, pulling swimmers aside to provide video feedback, working with each swimmer in the lane, one at a time. This keeps everybody moving and makes the best use of video equipment and coaching time.


Equipment: Goggles and a snug-fitting swimsuit. Fins are optional, but Alpha Fins from Aqua Sphere are recommended for most swimmers - see the Equipment page. If you need reading glasses to see video on an iPad (about 7x9 inches), bring those to the pool - you will be reviewing video without getting out of the water.

Program Outline: Eight 90-minute lessons in eight weeks. Each lesson begins with a review of skills and drills from the previous lesson. The following topics are covered:

  • Relaxation, balance, and the fundamentals of freestyle movements
  • Dynamic balance and rotation
  • Seamless breathing
  • Streamlined posture and the aquatic line
  • Propulsive and rotational kicking
  • The early vertical forearm catch
  • Compact stroking and compact recovery
  • Whole-body stroking, conceptual focus points, workout planning

Lesson and practice plans are available to students online (see the detailed Freestyle 1 Class Notes). The lesson plans describe all drills and exercises performed, and the practice plans provide suggested workouts that can be adjusted easily for the amount of practice time that you have available.


Breakwater Freestyle 1 Programs

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