Freestyle swimming allows the competitors to swim with freedom by deciding on any stroke of their choice. However, swimmers usually prefer the front crawl style as it is the fastest among them all. Some other officially regulated strokes by International Swimming Federation (FINA) include butterfly, breaststroke and backstroke. These three strokes combine with freestyle making up the medley events.
Earlier competitions were held in open water but now special pools have been designed for indoor freestyle swimming races. Ranging from 50m to 1500m, freestyle swimming races are the part of different international as well as many national competitions. The major competitions for men and women events are the short and long course world championships and the Olympics too. Swimming is one of the most renowned sports of the Olympics.
In freestyle, swimmers can use any style but they have to touch the wall at every turn and also upon the race completion. Some of competitor’s body part must break the water surface when he is swimming. It’s only permissible to submerge completely for 15 meters at the start and on every turn. Underwater swimming appears to be the fastest method, and therefore this rule was introduced to stop swimmers speing the entire lap underwater.
- Relay Swimming — a swimming race in which teams of four race consecutively.
- Swimming Summary
- More about the sport of swimming
- swimming at the Olympics
- Complete list of sports
- The Encyclopedia of Sports