Menu

Swim Tip: Maximize Efficiency While Breathing

  • By Sara McLarty
  • Published Feb 17, 2012
  • Updated Dec 17, 2012 at 1:10 PM UTC
Chris McCormack in the pool. Photo: Nils Nilsen

Every swimmer’s goal is to be as efficient as possible in the water. However, the simple motion of turning the head to take a breath can affect body position, causing the stroke to lose efficiency. Some swimmers drop their lead arm too early, others splay their legs apart with a scissor kick, but most often they roll too far to the side and lose their rhythm.

To maximize efficiency while breathing, keep one goggle in the water. During a breath to the right side, keep the left lens at or below the water line. Imagine a clock around your head and angle your face between three and four o’clock. This position will place your mouth just above the water for a quick inhale.

Use fins to practice this efficient breathing position. Kick along the surface of the water with your right arm outstretched. Slowly roll your head to breathe to the left side and keep the right goggle lens at the surface of the water. Take three complete breaths and then switch arms. Perform the same breathing drill to the right side.

RELATED: Easy Drill For Bilateral Breathing

FILED UNDER: Swim / Training TAGS:

Get our best triathlon content delivered to your inbox

Subscribe to the FREE Triathlete weekly newsletter