If you would like to improve your technique but aren't prepared to part with any cash these are all drills that you can try in your pool. When I first joined the club, which was pretty much a year ago, I struggled quite a bit with these; so if you are trying these out for the first time it's probably best to do it when the pool is quiet. However I have discovered that sometimes trying out a few drills is a good way to get a lane to yourself. People soon clear the pool to get out of the way of the weirdo who looks like a failed synchronised swimmer having a heart attack and has been rejected by the swimmers he or she is meant to be synchronised with.
Anyway, the first drill is swimming with fists. The idea of this is that you improve the use of your forearm to propel yourself forward instead of solely relying on the flat of your hand. This video gives a good explanation as well as featuring an incredibly funky bassline, a man with a cool moustache and the amusing phrase: "what I like about fist."
The dragging fingers drill helps improve rotation as well as getting your elbows high out of the water. While this chap has a black swimming cap just like mine I don't look quite as smooth when practising this drill. This video didn't make me chuckle as much as the previous one.
As I have mentioned before my least favourite drill is swimming with one arm. The idea is that it massively builds up strength not only in each arm but also in the core stomach muscles. There was once an embarrassing incident when Greenpeace came bursting into the swim session as they'd heard there was a whale in great distress, however it was just me thrashing about with one arm. You'll be pleased to know that this video has been produced by the same people as the first so the funky bassline and moustache are back. However there are no childish innuendos to snigger at.
So there we go, three exercises to ruin what would have been a nice relaxing dip in the pool. Don't say I don't ever do anything for you.