I am a beginner in swimming and it's been just 5 days into instructor lead coaching in the pool. I have mastered floating and classes are focused on freestyle.

I still don't know if I am kicking right. Here are the problems I face:

  • I am confused when someone says to kick straight leg, since my research on the internet and youtube is that everyone bends their knees to some extent

  • When I start kicking I do move forward at very slow pace ( may be 8 kicks to get distance of 8 feet covered), but at some point of time i feel am unable to even lift my leg( sort of feels numb and then disappears as though nothing happened)

  • Should my foot come outside the surface of water?

  • Should I push the water surface when kicking(that might push me forward) ?

Is there a video, resource or anything that shows me how to kick properly with a illustration (may be in slow motion)

1 Answer 1


The reason why your instructor stresses on you keeping your leg straight is because most beginners bend their leg too much while kicking, so if beginners concentrate on keeping their legs straight, then they can start kicking with minor bends. There are a few pointers to keep in mind while learning freestyle kicking:

  1. Alternate your legs while kicking
  2. Dont strech your legs too wide vertically
  3. Dont spread them too wide horizontally
  4. Extend your toes behind you. The above three pointers will help reduce drag in the water.
  5. Start practicing with a kick board. Don't get anxious, as some beginners can't even move forward when kicking with a kickboard (yet do develop power and technique)
  6. Try to position your body as parallel to the water surface as possible. If you angle yourself downwards then your kicks will loose the efficiency. Its ok if your feet hit the surface.
  7. During actual freestyle swimming, keep your head under the water when not breathing, this will promote your body to float upwards and align itself parallel to the surface hence increasing efficiency.

And of course, practice, practice and practice. Enjoy your swim!

  • Thanks for your tips, now after much practicing i am able to move forward but the proble now is, I am in the verticle middle of water surface and pool bottom when kicking. But i do move forward at very good pace, How do i do the same at surface of water Jul 1, 2014 at 13:50
  • 1
    great to know that you are able to move forward, so you are doing positive progress, when you try floating on your stomach, you essentially lower your head into the water and balance the body so as to float. the same thing applies here, in between breaths, focus on lowering your head into the water and getting your body parallel to the surface as much as possible. It is not possible to always entirely be at the surface(unless you are a pro with a speed suit on). so just keep practicing, it'll get better overtime. Jul 1, 2014 at 14:22
  • this is the best answer Jul 2, 2014 at 9:53

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