Sidekick swimming is one of the best freestyle swimming tips and techniques you need to learn. It is the foundation of a proper freestyle, making sure that you draw power efficiently. It helps your stroke to gain momentum, which is crucial to improving your speed.
Want to learn the fundamentals of swimming sidekick? Keep on reading and we’ll let you know the basics!
What is Sidekick Swimming?
Let’s start by defining what is sidekick swimming, which will make it easier to understand how to do it right.
It is exactly what the name implies – you have to kick on your side. Also called a one-arm extension drill, you will rotate your body while the head is looking down. Your nose and chin, on the other hand, will be directed to the bottom of the pool. The arm that is lowered in the water, meanwhile, will be extended forward.
Kicking on your side is also important if you are prone to a crossover. A crossover happens when you cross the centerline. This means that your hand will be entering the water in front of your head. This is dangerous because it can result in a shoulder injury.
Like the swimming warm-up exercises, kicking is important to master to avoid putting too much strain on your body and lessen the chances of being injured.
How To Do Sidekick Swimming Properly
Now that we have defined what is sidekick applied to swimming, let’s talk about the easy steps to do it properly.
1. Start in a Floating Position
In swimming, floating is one of the first things that you need to master. To learn how to do it properly, you can practice using pool noodles.
Assume a front-floating position with your face down the water facing the floor. Wear swimming goggles so that you can open your eyes comfortably. Wearing a swim cap will also help to keep your hair out of your face.
Extend your right arm in front of the head. As you do this, lean your head on your right shoulder while your arm is extended. Keep your left arm on your left side and stay as relaxed as possible. Position it next to your thigh.
2. Start Kicking
After assuming the floating position, you can now start swimming sidekick. When practicing, you can use a swimming kickboard until you can do it more efficiently without straining your legs.
When kicking, make small but rapid movements. With your right arm forward, lift your left shoulder and hip. While doing this, keep your balance on the right. As noted above, your face should be submerged in the water and facing the bottom of the pool.
Aside from your face, the palm of your right hand should open facing the bottom. On average, it should be about eight inches deep in the water. At this point, you should also apply the things you learned about how to breathe while swimming.
3. Breathe on Your Side
As you master sidekick swimming, another thing you need to learn is how to properly breathe on your side.
If you need air, you should rotate your head to your side. If you are on the right, turn your head in the opposite direction to breathe. When you do this, make sure that it is only your head that turns. Leave the rest of your body submerged in the water while you kick.
When you exhale, do it as smoothly as possible. Relax as you breathe. Slowly turn your head once your lungs are almost empty. Breathe and kick quickly in small motions.
4. Stay on the Surface
When you are practicing sidekick swimming, see to it that your hip stays on the water’s surface. For the starting position, stretch your arm to reach the wall of the pool. Lower your side and kick faster.
Now, swim to the other side of the pool while kicking on your side. After this, repeat on the other side. A good practice is to switch sides after doing at least 20 kicks.
After a while, reduce the number of kicks. After 20 kicks, reduce it to 12, 8, and eventually, 4.
Swimming Side Kick Tips and Tricks
To help you complete the sidekick exercises effectively and efficiently, below are some tips that can improve your technique.
- Invest in swim training accessories that will make things easy for you. Train not just for the sidekick but also for other swimming techniques. The best swim fins can help to keep your kicks narrow and compact. It can also improve your leg power.
- An exercise routine will also help. This will help to strengthen your legs, which is where you will draw power in a swimming sidekick. If you have weak legs, this will not allow you to kick with efficiency. This can also increase the chances of suffering from an injury.
- Work on your fingertips and toes. Their positions will have an impact on how you do the sidekick. Lengthen them as you kick. Also, keep the arm extended in a straight position. Bend it gently to propel your movement. Otherwise, it can experience too much strain.
- When you are kicking, draw power from the hips. This will propel your movements better and will improve your efficiency.
- Use a kickboard in between your legs. This will help in keeping your legs together. If you don’t keep your legs together, you will end up swimming like a frog. The frog kick is a technique that you can apply when scuba diving but not applicable in sidekick swimming.
- Keep on practicing. Even in swimming, practice makes perfect. You might not do it right the first time, but do not give up. A good kick is consistent, so you need to do it repeatedly.
Globo Surf Overview
If you want to know how to swim faster freestyle, you must learn the swimming sidekick. This is the foundation of your stroke and will help to gain momentum. It improves efficiency and also allows you to conserve energy.
More Swim Reviews:
- Pull Buoy
- Active Swimsuits
- Nose Clips For Swimming
- Swimming Gloves
- How To Do Dolphin Kick
- Aqua Pilates Exercises
- Bent Arm Freestyle
- Benefits Of Swimming In Cold Water
- How To Swim Faster
- Side Swim, Active.com