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Video:Top Tips for Dealing With Breathing Problems in Swimming

with Jim Garnett

Improve your breathing while swimming with some tips from About.com video. In this video you'll learn strategies for correcting your swim stroke, maintaining your swim speed, and proper breathing techniques while you swim.See Transcript

Transcript:Top Tips for Dealing With Breathing Problems in Swimming

Hi, my name is Jim Garnett and I’m here today with About.com to talk to you today about common problems breathing while swimming. 

Not Getting Enough Air While Swimming

The number one problem with breathing while swimming is that you don’t get enough air. And usually the main reason for this is that you’re not turning enough and getting your head out of the water far enough or you’re actually trying to exhale and inhale in your breath. The right way to do this is you only want to inhale with your breath. You want to be exhaling under the water and inhaling outside the water. If you’re trying to do both, it takes too much time. 

Sinking During Your Swim Stroke

The second common problem with breathing while swimming is that you tend to sink during your breath. This usually has to do with your arm out in front of you sinks and your elbow bends. You want to make sure that your elbow stays straight and your arms stays out in front of you. And to do this, you can use a side kick to you with floating. 

Sacrificing Speed for Breath

A third common problem with breathing while swimming is that you find that you tend to sacrifice speed while you’re trying to take a breath. This usually has to do with you pulling your face out of the water above you. What you want to do is keep your mouth parallel with the water and turn to your side while you remain kicking. That way you can keep your speed going. 

Navigating While Swimming

A fourth common problem is navigating while swimming. Now, this doesn’t apply to you lane swimmers that have a line to look at. It’s more for you triathletes that would be in a lake or the ocean and you have to keep your eyes on your buoy or target. To do this you would do bilateral strokes. Meaning every three strokes you would turn to the left and then you would turn to the right. You would keep alternating your head. During this time you can peak at your target and immediately have your mouth go back to being parallel with the water. You don’t want to be looking straight up. That will sacrifice and it will throw your breathing off. 

Taking In Water While Breathing

The fifth most common problem when swimming and trying to work on your breathing is that you suck in water. Now, this can be a combination of many of the things we’ve been talking about. When you turn to the side you want to make sure your entire body is turning to the side, not just your head. Bringing your face just a little bit longer will help you with that. As well, you want to make sure that your arm is extended out in front of you, not sinking or else your body will go with it and your face will sink into the water.

Lastly, while you’re on your side you want to make sure that you’re kicking your feet. The higher you can stay on the water the better you’ll be when taking a breath. 

For more information on aquatics, go to About.com. 

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