Swim Drill – Freestyle – 3 Strokes and 10 kicks

Smell your stinky armpit!

Freestyle is one of the four competitive strokes in USA Swimming. We introduce it to all of our beginning swimmers as a front glide, or a streamline. After learning the basics, and knowing how to swim the stroke generally well, we use this drill:

Freestyle, 3 strokes, then 10 kicks on your side.

  • Push off the wall in streamline
  • Do 3 freestyle arm strokes
  • on the last stroke, extend the bottom arm straight above the shoulder, roll onto the side, put your face in your armpit. The other hand remains on the side of the body near the hip.
  • Do 10 kicks on your side, bottom hand extended forward. Look at the floor.
  • After 10 kicks, do 3 strokes, and switch arms that is extended forward.

The body should be fully sideways during the 10 kicks on the side.

The Face should be looking straight down, or “sniffing your armpit.”

You can work on breathing to the side, by having swimmers only breath during the 10 kicks. PROTIP! Make sure they do it quickly, and not do the entire 10 kicks with their face up.

For novice swimmers it is usually best to restrict breathing to the 3 strokes, and not during the 10 kicks.

The kicking on side portion generally looks like this after :10seconds.

Better swimming.
Download FREE tools.

Download a free preview of our Premium Lesson Plans & unique SwimSheets.

Stay on our newsletter to enjoy more benefits like further free downloads, guides, and tools to make your swimming program better, easier, and more FUN!

Related Articles


Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.