These Are The Basic Rules Of Swimming: Learn To Swim This Summer

Rules Of Swimming

Swimming is considered fun leisure and a good way to stay fit, not to mention it offers tremendous health benefits.

It can help improve your mood, decreases your anxiety, and helps you to burn lots of calories. It gives many swimmers many benefits, so it becomes a national sport that everyone enjoys watching.

What are the basic rules of swimming? All swimmers must remain on the breast for butterfly strokes at all costs with synchronized arm and leg movements. While in breaststroke, your arms and legs follow a circular motion and must remain synchronous all the time.

This article aims to explain the basics of swimming, so if you plan to learn how to swim, this article can help.

This guide will also discuss the keys to making sure you start your swimming journey on the right track. Having a great start is very important to learn how to swim in no time.

Setting Up The Basics Of Your Swimming

Swimming is a tough sport, and before you go into specifics, you need to know the four areas that are important to set up your swimming journey as you get started.

These four areas include learning about breathing techniques, head positioning, hip position/ posture, and the kick technique. Let’s get into it!

Breathing Technique

The breathing technique might sound easy at first because a person has been doing this kind of activity since he or she was born in this world.

Meanwhile, many swimmers worldwide always recommend this to be the first training you need to build up first.

It would help if you practiced in every environment you are in, whether you are sitting at a desk or going for a cardio exercise. But as soon as you get in the water, the one thing that changes will be your breathing technique.

You can’t breathe underwater, but the common areas that needed to be addressed for many swimmers are the following:

  • Holding your breath
  • Exhaling your air
  • The position of your head
  • Body positioning or posture
  • Kick techniques

Holding Your Breath

There is a diminishing effect of doing this for many beginner swimmers. And actually, the first few strokes can be okay, but the further down the length they go, the need for more air becomes important.

Once you reach this point where the air is all you care about, most swimmers will usually look to stand up or give up. Then they will start throwing their head around out of the water to breathe or start to rotate their head.

These factors can contribute to one thing: the body positioning that gets lower in the water. As a result, it makes it even harder to breathe as the body practically starts to sink.

Properly Exhaling The Air

Learning how to properly exhale the air in a relaxed fashion while your head is still underwater is essential. Remember, you do not have to blow all your air out as you do not do that with other sports.

The key here is to find a good rhythm of exhalation and then rolling to the side to start to inhale.

It is much more efficient than large exhalations just before breathing or exhaling while your head is turned. In addition to that, from a standing position, you can bend from the waist.

Then put your chest and head on the surface of the water. Once you’re able to do that, you can slowly exhale air or blow bubbles, and then you can roll your head to the side to breathe.

Improving Your Head Positioning

The two points earlier can influence this, and as you learn how to breathe the area, it will go hand in hand with this head positioning and body rotation.

The key here is to have your hair in a more neutral position and develop a better body rotation as the swimmer performs strokes.

This way, it will become more balanced, and then the need to over-rotate the head to breath starts to diminish. If your head is facing forward before a breath, then the movement to breathe will be easier to get your mouth out of the water.

Head Position

As mentioned above, head positioning is necessary for your positioning in the water. In the areas discussed above around breathing techniques, having a change in your head position will influence the water’s legs and hips.

The higher you can lift your head, the lower the hops and kick will generally get.

Many swimmers with a strong kick technique will control their lower body if they lift their head really high.

But in some cases, some swimmers who lift their head will start to collapse in each of the areas below hip position and posture and kick technique.

Basic Swimming Skills You Should Know

Before you start your swimming career, you need to know different basic swimming skills that can enhance your chance to be a world champion swimmer.

Every athlete starts their career with basic swimming skills, and they only enhance it with training and experience.

To swim smoothly, coordination of your entire body is a must, and one must focus on the movements of your legs and arms.

It also includes your breathing control and your swimming strokes as well to become an expert in swimming. It would be best if you started with the basics. Here is the rundown of 5 basic swimming skills that you should learn.


As mentioned above, proper breathing technique is important. And believe it or not, many swimmers overlook this basic skill.

If you are not comfortable breathing while swimming, you are not doing it right, and you won’t enjoy it completely. The idea is to breathe with both of your nose and mouth when your head is underwater.

Once you are almost out of breath, you need to kufr your head to the side to take on full air before putting your face back down.


Before you even start with all your stroking and kicking, you must learn how to float in the water.

Floating will help you to get used to the habit of moving through any bodies of water you are in. Floating will also help keep your body on the water’s surface so you won’t drown.

Your body experiences a vertical buoyant force when immersed in the water, and floating will help keep your body in a vertical position.

It is an essential skill because if you accidentally fail in the water, you don’t usually float immediately, leading to drowning.

Body Coordination

You must know that all your body parts should be aligned and well-coordinated as much as possible in swimming.

All your muscles must move your lower back, abdomen, and hips in a very synchronized way to keep it moving forward. Then your hands will be the ones responsible for moving and cutting through the water first.

Your elbow, on the other hand, will make sure your body makes its way through the bodies of water.


Kicking is another crucial skill you must possess if you want to be a world-champion swimmer.

Kicking will help your body accelerate and move forward, and many swimming coaches introduce kickboards to their students to support the swimmer’s body.


Lastly, it would help if you learned some strokes aside from floating and kicking. Strokes are usually the arm movements that will help pull the body through the water.

There are many strokes that you can try to learn as many varieties are depending on your capabilities. Front crawl, sidestroke, backstroke, and butterfly are some of the most known swimming strokes.

Basic Rules For Competitive Swimming

Now that you have learned some of the basic things you need to swim properly, it is time to discuss the basic swimming rules.

It is essential to learn a few basic techniques to feel safe wherever you are in the water. Like many athletes, they train every day to perfect their strokes and swimming in general.

While endurance and form are necessary to your performance, you should at least understand a few rules that will put your practice in the right direction.

The Basic Strokes

If you plan to enter a competitive pool, you need to focus on four main strokes – butterfly, breaststroke, backstroke, and freestyle. Each of these strokes has its own particular set for a different competition.

1. Butterfly

All swimmers must remain on the breast for butterfly strokes at all costs with synchronized arm and leg movements. Your arms should recover clear of the water and enter the water together in front of you. Your legs should remain together throughout the stroke, and the only permitted motion is vertical. Any horizontal movement or separation of the legs will be considered illegal, and you will be disqualified.

During the start of the race, all swimmers must dive in and only permitted as many fly legs to kick as they want. It is subject to the head breaking the surface of the pool right before the 15m points.

At the end of the race and the turns, all of them should touch the wall of the pool or timing pad with both hands simultaneously.

2. Breaststroke

In breaststroke, your arms and legs follow a circular motion and must remain synchronous all the time.

Just like butterfly strokes, all swimmers must remain on the breast at all costs and must stay flat in the water. If your body twists slightly then, then this will throw your legs into a horizontal plane.

As a result, it will be called a screw kick, and you will be disqualified, so you should bear this in your mind. At turns and in the finish line, a touch must be made with your hands simultaneously.

3. Backstroke

For backstroke, all swimmers must remain on their back at all times, except for performing a turn. A swimmer may turn to their breast in this type of stroke and then immediately turn to leave the wall on their back.

It would be best if you did not spend time on the breast heading towards the wall since it is not allowed. If the turn judge spots you, you will end up being disqualified.

As with butterflies, swimmers usually break the surface of the water before reaching the 15m mark. It is normal for the swimmers to duck under the water to get more advantage at the finish line.

It is acceptable, providing that the part of the body is above the water when reaching the wall.

4. Freestyle

For freestyle stroke, this stroke is generally considered to be the fastest stroke for many swimmers. Although, for those who are stronger swimmers, a butterfly stroke can be a lot quicker.

As the name suggests, a freestyle stroke is pretty much anything that goes, and there are no specific requirements to prevent swimmers from performing backstroke or even butterfly during this freestyle race.

As long as the whole race utilizes the same stroke, a freestyle stroke can be open. The only requirement is that swimmers must touch the wall at the turns.

The finish with the most common rule infringements not touching the wall or coming up with the wrong lane.


When it comes to swimming, there are many things to consider. But the most important thing that you need to remember is to build up a good foundation.

This good foundation comes with the proper set of the basics, learning the basic swimming skills, and getting familiar with the basic rules.

If you spend more time learning all the swimming techniques mentioned above, then you will be prepared if you are planning to enter competitive swimming.

Just always remember to practice in the safe area with proper supervision by a lifeguard or an experienced swimmer. This way, you can ensure your safety while doing your best in learning how to swim.

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