The Basics of Swimming – Getting Started

Learning how To swim the basics of swimming can seem like a daunting task while teaching someone seems fairly straight forward.

There’s a reason why parents spend $1000’s of dollars so their children can swim properly. However, with the right tools and instructions, anyone can learn how to swim without having to dish out tons of money for lessons.

Here’s what you’ll need.

If you have your own pool or a friend has one that’s a great place to start. If not a lot of pools offer public swims and usually they are free! Take advantage of this. Bathtubs are also a great place to get your kids comfortable in the water. There are also certain exercises that can be done in the pool to help get your child ready.


When learning how to swim it’s important to have a swimming buddy. You want to make sure that someone else is there in case anything happens and it makes learning a lot more fun. They can help monitor your progress and tell you if you’re making any mistakes. Check also: Synchronized Swimming Techniques.

Parents are, obviously, the first ones that should teach their children how to swim and one main reason why parents should create a fun and relaxing learning environment when their kids learn to swim is that, and this is often overlooked, is “fun” level is highly effective for kids when it comes to learning anything.


If you’re looking to teach someone make sure you read and understand what each stroke requires in basic techniques. Let your children place swimming at the center of their universe and watching videos will help demonstrate visually what is needed in order to let them be successful.

Essential Skills

Now that you have the basics covered there are certain skills you should try to master first before learning how to do the different strokes. These are essential to becoming a strong swimmer and building a strong foundation. Later, when children, for example, want to engage in synchronized swimming, mastering basic techniques will prove to be essential.


Being able to breathe properly is a very common technique this many people struggle with. Breathing is a very straight forward concept, on land we inhale and then exhale. In the water, it’s a bit different. While our face is submerged, we should always be exhaling this does one of two things. Firstly, it prevents water from going into our nose and mouths. Check out also this post about Michael Phelps Chasing History.

Professional swimmers exhale using both nose and mouth. For beginners, I would recommend exhaling with your just your mouth. Secondly, by exhaling while submerged it allows you to only have to inhale when you lift your head out of the water, this saves a lot of time and keeps your stroke fluid and consistent to maintaining momentum and allowing you to swim faster and better.


A lot of your power will come from your legs. This is the skill the people struggle with most and requires the most practice. The most common kick is the flutter kick which requires you to keep your legs and feet straight but relaxed. Read also: basic backstroke techniques.

A lot of individuals mistake making large kicks that generate a lot of “Splash” as the most powerful way to kick. Yes, it requires a lot of energy but it does almost nothing to propel you forward. Yes, there are some kid-friendly sports education tools, also for swimming, but your kids should learn how to best use their bodies. They should, instead, focus on smaller, faster kicks trying to move your legs quickly but powerfully with a smaller range of motion. Keeping your toes pointed is essential to generating power.

These two skills are the bread and butter of every strong swimmer. Practice these first before moving on to more advanced strokes. You’ll need to be able to breathe properly without thinking and having a strong consistent kick, before adding more advanced skills with your arms and body.