The competitors beating you in the water aren’t faster because they spend more time in the water. They’re faster because they have better technique.

Many triathletes stand to make substantial time drops in their swimming leg by making small changes to their freestyle technique. And here’s the best part—technique changes (even drastic ones!) are best done in SHORT, focused training sessions. A 15-30 minute swim is plenty of time to concentrate on technique.

1.       Consult with a coach or technique expert on your personal technique strengths and weaknesses.

2.       Train with short swims (25yds are best) at a slow stroke rate where you are not getting fatigued.

3.       Concentrate on technique as much as possible during every training session. Don’t worry about swimming fast. As changes become more ingrained, you can slowly increase speed.

4.       As with any sport, swimming technique often gets worse as the athlete becomes fatigued. More reps done focused on technique when not fatigued, means more permanent technique changes.

Additional resources:

Sample Chapters of Approaching Perfect Freestyle E-book

Three technique elements you can’t swim well without

Video on freestyle head position