Contact your company to license this image. To move forward both arms must move together at the same time in a pulling and pushing motion. Breaststroke Photo Credit: Anatiago. Touch your upper thighs with your thumbs, and keep them there while taking quick, short breaths when you feel the need to come up for air. Leaf Group Ltd. diagnosis or treatment. Planks, squats, lunges and two-footed jumps are exercises you can do at home without having to go to the gym or buy any specialized equipment. While other styles like the breaststroke, front crawl, or backstroke can be swum adequately by beginners, the butterfly is a more difficult stroke that requires good technique as well as strong muscles. The glutes are the central power behind the stroke, working in union with legs and abs to propel the body forward and raise the arms above the water to position them for their stroking motion. The freestyle is the most natural stroke, but it still comes with some challenges. I don’t know what death feels like but if I did, the 200 freestyle … LIVESTRONG is a registered trademark of the LIVESTRONG Foundation. Kicking on your back requires an added focus on form, including pointing your feet and relaxing your ankles. The breaststroke is one of the four swimming strokes performed in competitive swimming, and in the author’s opinion, the hardest to master. any of the products or services that are advertised on the web site. Indulging her passion for healthy living and fitness through the written word on a full-time basis since 2010, former health coach, fitness instructor and world-class athlete Jodi Thornton-O'Connell guides readers to discover fun and delicious ways to physically connect to their surroundings. Swimming butterfly uses 27 different muscles. Catching a face full of water as you're coming up for breath isn't unusual while mastering the stroke, and that lungful of water is a good instructor for tweaking the timing of your breath. The biggest challenge is learning to breathe while turning your head to the side, says Stacy Caprio, a certified Red Cross water safety instructor and coach who swam competitively for 14 years. But because you're doing it all upside down, lying on your back instead of your stomach, the stroke requires added coordination. Though many people in the military — including the Navy Seals — practice this stroke, it isn't used in competitive swimming, Caprio says. While the 200 fly is grueling, I think the hardest event has to be either the 200 meter (long course) … The front crawl or freestyle … Sidestroke. The sidestroke is performed while on your right or left side. Timing is critical: There are two dolphin kicks for each strong pull of the arms, and they must occur at just the right time to maintain forward momentum. Build core and glute strength with kicking and land exercises. The 200 freestyle is the worst event. Practice your dolphin kick on your back using a kickboard. The sidestroke is a fairly simple stroke, but it still requires a lot of energy. Yet when you have mastered this stroke, swimming a few lengths of butterfly can be a lot of fun because … Start with your legs extended behind you, then bend your knees and bring your feet toward your butt. Take the difficulty out of swimming the butterfly with a multifold approach to training. The swimmer is in a difficult position when swimming as they are swimming on their breasts. Just like breast stroke it is also symmetrical. What Should a Freestyle Stroke Look Like? 1. Cindy is a freelance health and fitness writer, author, and podcaster. Others, such as the butterfly, take years to perfect. Read more: How to Start Swimming to Crush Your Fitness Goals. The Elusive Butterfly. The LIVESTRONG Foundation and LIVESTRONG.COM do not endorse Butterfly expends the most energy of the three, and is usually considered the hardest stroke by those endeavoring to master it. Beginners often find it challenging to keep their heads in the water and arch their neck upward, Lucero says. the hardest stroke would be measured by the person swimming and how well they grasp the way to swim that stroke. Add them all to your next your swim workout to keep you on your fins. and Im a 13 year old swimmer and personally, I think butterfly is the hardest because when you start to get tired, your technique falls apart, but the funny thing is that my fastest strokes (as a comparison to other kids my age) are butterfly at 37 seconds for 50 m and backstroke at 36. "Swimmers tend to gravitate to freestyle as it's the fastest," says Jenny McCuiston, co-founder of Goldfish Swim School. For example, it is possible to swim butterfly with a breaststroke kick or to swim breaststroke with a flutter kick. Kicks for Faster swimming one lap, '' says Jenny McCuiston, co-founder of Goldfish School! 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