> I just recently started swimming again. I have heard from
> friends that I should count the no. of strokes I take to swim each
> I swim one length(50m) in abt 56 strokes for freestyle, and 32
> for ***stroke. Could anyone pls enlighten how inefficient at
> swimming I am, and how I can improve.
Imagine that when your hand enters the water (front-crawl) it stays exactly
where you put it and your body therefore moves past it. This can be
considered to be almost ideal.
It follows therefore that the ideal swimmer will travel twice his arm length
every stroke. World class freestylers will achieve this. If you measure your
arm length, double it, then divide it into the swim distance you will have
approximately your 'ideal' stroke count. In my experience, if you can get
anywhere near 75% of this you are doing pretty well.
To improve you can glide as suggested but is that what you want? if you
glide then your speed drops. What you want is to set a reasonable time for a
given distance (say 50m) and then practice swimming that time with fewer
Learn to be more streamlined, head/hips/legs all in-line, no pause in the
stroke, one arm takes over propulsion smoothly from the other to provide
constant body velocity, keep the leg kick compact and within the depth of
your body, ensure a high body position, bilateral breathing will help stroke
balance, keep arm recovery compact (high elbow, bent arm, hands pass close
to the body) - avoid a wide swinging arm recovery which will take your hips
off-line and cause lateral deviation.
In general - think about every stroke you make and strive to make it as
effective as possible. Ensure adequate rest between swims so you are not
fighting fatigue whilst practicing technique.
Hope this helps.