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Here are the official olympics strokes defined and decribed:
This is the most recognized of swimming
strokes and first to learn, as it incorporates all the essential swimming techniques needed for all strokes. Freestyle refers to "any style", and in competitive swimming places no
restrictions on what action the competitors use, except during the freestyle portion of medley swimming. In practice, almost
all freestyle events are swum using front crawl. Events are held at distances of 50 m, 100 m,
200 m, 400 m, 800 m and 1500 m. Events are held in yards at distances of 50 y, 100 y, 200 y, 500 y, 1000
y, and 1650 y.
Two Principals of Freestyle:
1. Body position – Head, hips & feet at surface, streamlined. The Zip Fin will help achieve correct body position at the surface of the water.
2. Lengthening of the Body – While keeping one arm out front, rolling your torso
from side to side will allow body position to stretch to maximum length and lead to less body resistance in the water.
The Butterfly stroke
The butterfly stroke is usually the last stroke to be learn. It is the
hardest stroke to master and this stroke requires a lot of upper body strength. This stroke is very taxing on the shoulders,
consequently it builds broader shoulders. Butterfly events require that the swimmer's actions retain bilateral
symmetry (the left side of the body has to do the same as the right). It is commonly considered the most physically challenging
of the strokes. Events are held at distances of 50 m, 100 m, and 200 m. Events are also held in yards.
Breaststroke, from which the butterfly stroke evolved, places the additional
restriction that the swimmer's hands must be pushed forward together from the breast and that the elbows must remain under
the water. Timing is very important,
pull with your arms first and following with a strong "frog" kick. This is an excellent stroke to warm up or cool down with,
as it is less taxing on your body. It is the slowest stroke in competitive swimming. Events are held at distances
of 50 m, 100 m, and 200 m. This stroke, as well as butterfly requires great shoulder strength. Events are also
held in yards.
Backstroke places no symmetry restrictions, but swimmers must lie on their
back at all times except during turns to perform the stroke. Backstroke is performed, in essence, as an inversion of the crawl
— competitors swing their arms back over their shoulder, alternately, and pull through under the water to provide motive
power, with a flutter kick. Much of the focus on the back stroke is leg propulsion; so choose this stroke for the most powerful
leg workout. Using the Zip Fins here will give you more kicking thrust. Events are held at distances of 50 m, 100 m, and 200 m. Events are also held in yards.
|this is front crawl, used by bears and dogs)
VERY VERY BASIC OF SWIMMING
torso and the legs should be kept as much as possible parallel to the surface of the water. Dropped legs or a slanted torso
dramatically increase drag.
The hand should be extended forward of the head, as
much as possible. This increases the average length at the water-line, substantially increasing speed. This is an effect long
used by boat designers, and unconsciously used by "naturally good swimmers."
The time spent on the side should be maximized because
the torso is smaller front-to-back than side-to-side on most swimmers. This reduces the frontal cross-section, reducing drag
further, and also increasing the ratio between the body's water-line-length and width. Similar improvements are possible by
orienting the narrowest direction of head, hands, legs and arms into the water. The torso is by far the most critical.
The motion of the hand, arm, and leg from back to the front should be in the
air as much as possible, and in the water, oriented as perfectly as possible, because the returning appendage has to move
at least twice as fast as the swimmer, and in the water generates eight times the drag (drag increases with the cube of the
speed) of an equal amount of torso frontal area.
The basic "catch" of the water is not nearly as critical
as the above items. Most swimmers simply grab water with their hand flat, or the fingers slightly spread, and then draw it
smoothly down their body.
None of the above techniques require improved strength.
With strength training, the hands and feet can be extended further into the water, gaining more propulsion. For beginners,
increased strength brings only small improvements if the above strategies (minimising drag and lengthening water-line) are
A number of swimming styles have been developed based on the implementation of some
or all of these principles. The 500 yard freestyle and the 200 yard freestyle are considered to be the best events in swimming,
though the 50 yard freestyle is considered the hardest.
Important things beginners should note:
Never swim alone (make sure there is a life guard)
Never swim on an empty stomach
Wear proper attire when swimming
Warm up before swimming (simple stretching)
No diving or jumping into an unfamiliar body of water without
first determining the depth (at least 9 feet for jumping and diving) and the terrain, and whether there are any hidden obstacles.
Be under the influence of alcohol or drugs
|make sure you swim at proper places