Swimming basics: Blowing Bubbles and Kicking Legs | Swimcentral

Swimming basics: Blowing bubbles and kicking legs

Stage 1

Blowing bubbles and kicking legs is what makes every swimming stroke go! It coordinates movement and breathing. At the beginning, it’s a bit like trying to pat your head and rub your tummy at the same time. A little practice at the wall will help establish good habits once they start swimming away from it.

To give it a go, a swimmer should already:

  • Feel comfortable with water on the face
  • Be able to hold onto the wall
  • Have tried the kicking movement while sat on poolside

Fast, small kicks with relaxed feet will hold the body up in the water. Blowing bubbles in a pattern will help control breathing.

Our Guide to Blowing Bubbles and Kicking Legs

  • Feet on the floor, facing the wall
  • Stretch arms out straight, and hold onto the wall for support
  • Put your face into the water between your arms start to blow bubbles
  • Walk legs backwards until they float up straight behind you
  • Kick legs straight up and down
  • Keep feet relax and floppy—little splashes!

How to stop

  • Pull yourself towards on the wall

….and at the same time…

  • Tuck your knees up to your chest
  • Lift your head out of the water
  • Feet flat on the floor

You’ve done it!


Practicing with children?

  • Try letting kids hold your hands for support instead of the wall.
  • Or get in position side by side at the wall and practice together.
  • Make it fun: Blow bubbles in a song pattern such as the ABCs or Jingle Bells!

Mastered Blowing Bubbles and Kicking Legs? Why not try the Star Float on the Front?

Finding this skill tricky? Have a go at Floating on the Back in Shallow Water.

Swimming basics: Star float on the front | Swimcentral

Swimming basics: Star float on the front

Stage 1

Learning to float face-down—the star float on the front—is an important foundational skill in swimming. That’s because it helps the swimmer prepare the correct body position for the more advanced strokes they’ll be learning in the later stages!

To give it a go, a swimmer should already be able to:

  • Place their whole face in the water
  • Extend arms and legs away from their bodies
  • Hold a position for a few seconds

Holding arms and legs out wide helps keep balance and buoyancy so the swimmer stays on the top of the water!

Put your face into the water between your arms and let legs float up behind you

Our Guide to Star Float on the Front

  • Feet on the floor, facing the wall
  • Stretch arms out wide and straight, and hold onto the wall for support
  • Put your face into the water between your arms and let legs float up behind you
  • Let go of the wall and float for a few seconds, arms and legs out wide. Relaxing!
  • Alternatively, use a noodle float to get into position instead of the wall

How to stop

  •  Push down on the water with your hands and lift your head

….and at the same time…

  • Bring your knees up to your chest
  • Feet flat on the floor
  • Pat yourself on the back, well done!

Practicing with children?

  • Get in position side by side at the wall to show them how to do it
  • Make it fun: Pretend to be parachutists who have just jumped out of an airplane!
  • Kids might want help coming out of the float position the first few times. Encourage them to tuck their knees to the body while also providing support.

Mastered the Star Float on the Front? Why not try the Push and Glide?

Finding this skill tricky? Have a go at Blowing Bubbles and Kicking Legs