All of the studies show that swimming has been known since prehistoric times. And, of course, as a sport swimming became a part of the modern Olympic Games. Of course, swimming isn't just a sport; it is a wonderful way to relax and to keep healthy. Recreational swimming is widely used for entertainment. The swimming styles that keep your head over the water are used more often.
There is also occupational swimming. There are many different professionals that need people to enter the water like pearl and abalone divers, for example. Occupational swimming is also part of military training in many cases.
But, probably the most well known kind of swimming is competitive swimming; this is a very interesting and entertaining sport. Different competitions in swimming attract a huge audience. Because it can be easily understood, the main goal in competitive swimming is to make swimming as efficient as possible to increase the speed of the swimmer.
There are a great number of different styles that are used in competitive swimming today. The most common of these are: the breast stroke, the butterfly, the front crawl, and the back stroke.
The breast stroke style gives the swimmer a wonderful stability in the water; that is why it is widely used for recreational swimming. But, there is also competition in the breast stroke, although it is the slowest of all the competitive swimming styles.
The butterfly is one of the most complex styles of swimming. It needs a good technique and special training. In this style of swimming, a swimmer's hands move at the same time. It is the second fastest style after the front crawl. There are two different kinds of butterfly style, the butterfly stroke and the butterfly kick, which is also known as the dolphin.
The fastest of the other styles is the front crawl. It is very efficient and it is used in many competitions. The front crawl allows the swimmer to reach the fastest speed possible 2.17 meters per second. It is the position of the body when it does the front crawl that makes it very efficient. It allows you to move your hands freely. And, the technique of the front crawl movements makes the speed of the swimmer almost constant through the whole cycle. A variation of the front crawl is called the total immersion technique is getting very popular. In fact, the total immersion technique allows you to swim like a fish.
The new approach to the hydrodynamics also allows the total immersion technique to allow the swimmer's body to be streamlined. That effect is achieved by increasing the length of the body. The main principle of the total immersion technique is to keep one hand stretched forward while the other hand is moving. Such an approach takes less effort from the swimmer so that the swimming is much easier. But, the total immersion technique is a little slower than the regular front crawl technique. Because of this it isn't used in competitions but more professional swimmers use the total immersion technique in their training program.