SWIM Bike Run: Beginner Swimmers: Top Tips to Improve Your Stroke


Take the plunge with these top tips! We all know swimming is good for you. Ask any early riser with a pool pass, and they’ll be tripping over their expertly folded towel to tell you, ‘it works every major muscle group while going easy on the joints!’


But all that splashing and thrashing can be intimidating for a newbie, and what if you do it wrong and end up with a noseful of chlorine?

Have no fear! 

Learn these basic strokes, and take to the pool - or one of the UK’s many amazing outdoor spots - like a champion. 

1 Float


We recommend taking it slow if you’re a proper beginner. Like, real slow. So slow, in fact, you won’t be swimming at all.

The best way to overcome anxiety about being in the water is to well… be IN the water. 

So take your time, stick to the shallow end, and alternate floating on your front and back.

There’s no rush to dive in and go for a new butterfly world record. So relax and get used to how the water looks, sounds, and feels at your own pace. Close your eyes, and you could be in the Med! 



This nifty stroke allows you to keep your head above the water and look around as you go. 

Move your legs and arms in one smooth motion, gradually build up your stamina, and start putting your face under once you’ve built your confidence. 

Benefits: Great cardiovascular workout. Activates the chest muscles. Tones the hamstrings, upper back, and lower legs.

Tip: Don’t pull your arms too far back. The further back, the more resistance you’ll face.

3 Backstroke


Want to keep your face out of the water but ready to mix things up?

Backstroke is great for perfecting your form, and having to be aware of where the pool ends will grow your instincts and spatial awareness.

Practise keeping yourself straight in the water, and lengthen your spine to keep your whole body level to reduce drag.

Benefits: Improves hip flexibility. Reduces hunching of the shoulders. Works those all-important back muscles.

Tip: Don’t let those hips dip. Keep them as close to the surface of the water as possible.

4 Freestyle 


So you’re feeling confident and have even mastered putting your head under the water.

Time to build up some real speed!

With alternating arms, windmill forward with your head underwater, turning to breathe at the side. Keep your hands relaxed, and flutter kick your legs to stabilise your body.

Benefits: Great for your heart, lungs, and circulatory system.

Tip: Kick from your thighs, not from your knees. 

A Lifetime of Enjoyment

Swimming isn’t just about physical fitness. It’s about making the most of every holiday and staying safe while exploring the world’s coastlines and bodies of water.

Make a splash and sign up for Swim Bike Run activities in your area here.

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