Disclaimer: This article is for informative purposes only. Always consult a professional before starting any physical fitness program in order to reduce the risk of injury.
Out of all swimming strokes, freestyle is the first technique taught to beginners. As this style helps them learn to breathe and control the body alignment in the water, it becomes very important for them to be better than good. And since the drills are performed repetitively, you not only learn the technique properly but also become an efficient swimmer.
Drills for Beginners
If you have just learned to swim freestyle, the most important thing is to get the technique right. So speak to your coach or instructor to help you while you perform these drills.
Drill #1 - Arm Movement
Get inside the pool, and stand in the shallow end. Stretch your arms out in front of you, and close your palms to make fists. Now begin swimming in the freestyle manner, but don't open your fists. You will use your forearms, and bend elbows in order to gain speed and propel forward. Once you master this drill, your arm movements while swimming will become much sharper, and accurate.
Drill #2 - Staying Afloat
Walk towards the deeper side of the pool, and stop when the soles of your feet can't touch the bottom. Stand near the edge of the pool, and then slightly push yourself in. Keep your elbows steady, and only move your forearms in clockwise manner. This will keep you afloat, and counteract gravity. If you wish to go further down the pool, and touch your feet at the bottom, move your forearms in an anticlockwise manner.
Drill #3 - Breathing Technique
To perform the drill, you will have to do 150 freestyle strokes. For the 1st 50 strokes, you will take a breath after every 3 complete strokes. After that, for the next 50 strokes, you will take a breath after every 5 complete strokes. In the end, for the last 50 strokes, you will take a breath after every 7 complete strokes. This drill will help you learn how to control your breathing pattern.
Drill #4 - Leg Movement
Stand in the pool and stay at the shallow end. Hold the edge of the pool, and lift your legs up, but keep them under the surface of water. Extend your arms, keep your chin on the surface of water, and start kicking your feet. As you do so, keep your feet under water and make sure they don't come out even once. This drill will help you kick your legs properly so that you can propel yourself forward while swimming.
Drill #5 - One-arm Swimming
For our final drill, you need to be inside the pool and on the shallow end. Keep your arms under water, and while extending the right arm, use the left arm to carry out the strokes. Do one lap with the right arm extended, without moving it, with the left arm doing all the work. In the next lap, keep your left arm extended, and let the right arm do all the work.