Swimming as we know is an excellent aerobic workout. There are various types of swimming strokes that you can master like the breaststroke, the butterfly stroke, the backstroke and the freestyle stroke. Generally one begins with the freestyle stroke as it is the easiest to learn. The butterfly stroke is considered the toughest techniques to master.
Breaststroke is the oldest and the most popular style of swimming for fitness and recreation. Swimming for an hour in this style can help you burn around 750 calories. It involves perfect timing and requires the body to move up and down as you glide forward through water. The characteristic feature of this stroke is the frog kick that alternates with your arms moving in a long circular motion in the front.
This stroke also requires superb timing and is the toughest to perfect. It can help you burn 800 calories in an hour. In this stroke while the legs move together in a dolphin kick the upper body ripples like an earthworm and your arms move together in unison like a windmill.
The stroke is the second fastest type of swimming stroke and is done with your face facing skywards. It can help you burn around 500 calories in an hour. The arms move in an alternate windmill motion forming an ‘S’ pattern when pushing the water. The legs perform a flutter kick in an alternate order. The arms should move with equal strength to prevent swimming off to one side. The body should roll from side to side so the arms can catch enough water to propel you forward.
Freestyle (front crawl)
Though in freestyle swimming you can use any stroke you like but for competitive swimming the front crawl is preferred because it is the fastest technique. This stroke can help you burn 500 calories an hour. This stroke is practiced in prone position. The legs move in up and down flutter kick and arms move in an alternate windmill motion just like in the backstroke.
It is one of the simple swimming strokes. Dog paddling involves moving forward with the arms under water and legs moving in a modified flutter kick.