Breathing Technique and Timing

This week’s Speedo Tip of the Week comes from USA Swimming’s Biomechanics Coordinator Russell Mark. Mark offers some advice on good breathing technique for freestyle.


Mark’s Tip:

Good breathing technique and timing is so important to an efficient freestyle. Breathing “late” typically means your breathing interferes with the rhythm of your arm strokes.  Late breathing can also affect how your arm pulls underwater.  If you start pulling water while your head is still turned for a breath, it will likely lead to a poor catch, and then that arm may eventually cross underneath the body at the finish.  Here are some things to think about:


1.       Start turning your head to breathe BEFORE the recovering arm (on the non-breathing side) hits the water.  Most people wait for that arm to enter and extend before turning to breathe.

2.       Take a quick breath with your head low, trying to keep one goggle in the water.  Don’t lift your head to breathe.

3.       Begin turning your head back into the water while the arm in the water (on the non-breathing side) is starting the catch.

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