Swimming Workouts for Beginners

Are you looking to dive into the world of fitness? If you're a beginner looking for an effective and enjoyable workout, swimming might be just what you need! In this guide, we'll cover a variety of swim workouts specifically designed for beginners, including basic workouts, distance workouts, HIIT routines, and breathing techniques. Additionally, we'll share some useful tips to help you get started on your swimming journey. So grab your swimsuit and goggles, because it's time to make a splash with these beginner swimming workouts!

What Is A Good Swim Workout?

A well-rounded swim workout consists of a warm-up, main set, and cool-down. It should prioritize endurance, strength, and technique development by incorporating different strokes and drills to engage various muscle groups. As you improve, gradually increase the intensity and length of your sessions.

Length Of The Workout

A swim workout's length will vary depending on factors like fitness level, goals, and time availability. Beginners can start with shorter sessions of 20-30 minutes and gradually increase. Intermediate swimmers can aim for 45-60 minute workouts, incorporating various strokes and drills like freestyle, breaststroke, and backstroke.

Advanced swimmers may engage in longer sessions, ranging from 60-90 minutes or more, focusing on specific areas of improvement or training for competitions like triathlons. Remember to gradually increase workout duration and intensity to build endurance and strength.


Intensity is a key factor in any swim workout, especially for beginners. To ensure a well-rounded fitness routine, it's essential to incorporate a mix of intensity levels. This helps challenge your fitness and promote improvement over time. Incorporating both aerobic and anaerobic exercises is critical.

Aerobic exercises like steady-state swimming or long-distance swims are great for targeting cardiovascular endurance. Meanwhile, anaerobic exercises such as sprint sets or interval training can help improve speed and muscular strength. By varying the intensity of your structured workouts, you can avoid monotony and keep yourself motivated.

Time Available For Training

Consideration of the time available for training plays a vital role in designing a swim workout. Making the most out of your training time is important, taking into account your fitness level and goals. For individuals with limited time, incorporating shorter, high-intensity workouts can provide a great cardiovascular challenge. Conversely, if you have more time on your hands, engaging in longer endurance-based workouts can effectively enhance your overall swimming fitness.

It's essential to include a variety of strokes and drills to target diverse muscle groups and refine technique. Additionally, incorporating warm-up and cool-down exercises acts as a preventative measure against injuries and aids in the recovery process.

Best Swim Workouts For Beginners

If you're a beginner swimmer, you may want to start at a slow pace - and that's okay! Starting with basic exercises like freestyle and backstroke is a great way to get started. As you progress, you can incorporate more advanced techniques like breaststroke and butterfly. Endurance is an important aspect of swimming, so gradually increasing the duration and intensity of your workouts is key. You can also use equipment like pull buoys or kickboards to target specific muscle groups and improve your strength.

Mixing up your workouts with both aerobic and anaerobic exercises will help you improve your overall fitness level and prevent boredom. Whether you're swimming for weight loss, general fitness, or training for a triathlon, there are plenty of beginner-friendly swim workouts to choose from.

Workout 1: Basic Workout

When creating a swim workout for beginner swimmers, it is crucial to start with the basics and gradually progress in terms of endurance and technique. Begin by focusing on fundamental strokes such as freestyle and backstroke. Incorporate various strokes and drills to enhance overall technique.

Prior to the main set, ensure a proper warm-up with easy laps or water-based exercises to prepare your body for the upcoming workout. The main set should be taken at a moderate pace if possible, and include exercises that aim to build endurance, refine stroke technique, and enhance overall fitness levels. Complete the workout with a cool-down session of easy swimming or stretching to promote recovery and prevent injuries.

Workout 2: 30-minute Distance Workout

The 30-minute Distance Workout is an excellent full body workout option for beginner swimmers who are eager to enhance their endurance and refine their swimming technique. With its focus on stamina-building and moderate pace swimming, this workout is designed to help beginners gradually increase their fitness level.

The warm-up section includes a combination of easy swimming and stretching exercises to prepare the body for the main set. During the main set, swimmers will engage in swimming longer distances, allowing them to develop their stroke technique while also improving their cardiovascular fitness. The cool-down that follows involves easy swimming and stretching exercises to promote muscle recovery and prevent any post-workout soreness.

Incorporating this 30-minute Distance Workout into a regular swim routine is a surefire way for beginners to make progress toward their swimming goals.

Workout 3: Beginner HIIT

Beginner High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) can be an excellent swim workout for newcomers to the sport. It incorporates short bursts of high-intensity swimming along with periods of active recovery or rest. This workout is designed to enhance endurance and improve cardiovascular fitness, making it a great option for beginners.

By customizing the intervals based on your fitness level, you can gradually increase the intensity and duration of the intervals over time. Additionally, incorporating different strokes like freestyle, backstroke, and breaststroke helps target various muscle groups, boosting overall strength and coordination. Remember to listen to your body and take breaks as needed. Beginner HIIT is a dynamic and engaging swim workout for those looking to dive into their fitness journey.

Workout 4: Breathing Technique

Breathing technique is an essential skill to master as a beginner swimmer. By improving your breathing technique, you can swim more efficiently and comfortably. Start by practicing bilateral breathing, alternating every three strokes. This helps develop balance and coordination.

Incorporate drills such as one-arm freestyle or kickboard drills to improve your breathing skills. Remember to exhale fully underwater and inhale quickly when your mouth is out of the water. Gradually increase the distance or time spent on these drills to build endurance and improve swimming performance. Whether you want to lose weight or prepare for a triathlon, focusing on the breathing technique is a great addition to your beginner swim workout routine.

Workout 5: The "Get Used to Water" Workout

To start your journey with swim workouts, it's crucial for beginner swimmers to acclimate to the water. Begin by practicing foundational swimming techniques, such as floating and kicking, to build confidence and familiarity in the pool. As you progress, incorporate different strokes like freestyle, breaststroke, and backstroke to make your swim workout more comprehensive. Using equipment like kickboards, fins, and pull buoys can aid in your training.

Remember to warm up and cool down before and after each session to prevent any injuries. Consistency is key, so establish a regular swimming routine to improve your endurance, strength, and overall fitness.

Workout 6: Intermediate Sprint for Longer Distances

An intermediate sprint workout for longer distances is a fantastic way to boost your swimming abilities and endurance. Start with a few laps of gentle swimming to warm up your muscles. Then, complete 4-6 sets of 50-meter sprints, ensuring you take short breaks in between. It's important to maintain correct form and technique throughout each sprint while gradually increasing the distance over time.

Once you finish the sprints, wind down with some easy laps and stretches to prevent muscle soreness. This workout not only improves your stamina and stroke count but also offers a stimulating cardiovascular workout.

Best Swimming Workout Gear

Gear up for your swim workout with these essential swimming gear items specially designed for beginners. From swim caps to kickboards, having the right gear can enhance your swimming experience and help you achieve your fitness goals. Here are some items recommended for beginners:

Swim Caps: Keep your hair protected and reduce drag in the water for a smoother swim.

Goggles: Enjoy clear vision underwater and protect your eyes from the chlorine.

Swimsuits: Choose a comfortable and durable swimsuit that allows ease of movement in the water.

Swim Fins: Improve leg strength and technique as you swim, perfect for beginners looking to build endurance.

Kickboards: Master your kicking technique with the help of a kickboard to isolate your leg muscles.

More Swimming Tips for Beginners

For beginner swimmers, start by learning basic techniques like floating and kicking. Take it slow and gradually increase your swimming distance and intensity. Focus on proper breathing techniques, exhaling underwater and inhaling when turning your head. You might also consider getting swimming lessons or hiring a swim coach to improve your technique.

How to Find a Swimming Pool to Get Started

Embarking on a journey of swimming workouts for beginners is an exciting opportunity to boost your fitness level and health. One key factor in unleashing your inner swimmer is finding the right swimming pool to kickstart your aquatic adventure.

For starters, Swimply makes it easy to rent a private pool in your area!

Alternatively, you can look for community pools in your local area. You may want to look for pools that cater to beginners, offering swim programs or classes designed specifically for new swimmers like you. This way, you can dive right into your swim regimen with confidence.

Safety and cleanliness go hand in hand when it comes to choosing a pool. Check that the pool you select adheres to strict safety measures and maintains a high standard of hygiene. Consider joining a community or recreational center that boasts a pristine pool environment, providing a refreshing and safe haven to refine your strokes.

Don't just take the plunge blindly – seek recommendations from friends, family, or online communities. Their personal experiences and insights can be invaluable in finding a pool that suits your needs and preferences. By tapping into the collective wisdom of others, you'll make a splash with a pool that offers everything you need to dive headfirst into your beginner swim workouts.


Swimming can be a fantastic way to improve fitness and provides numerous health benefits. Whether you're a novice or a competitive swimming enthusiast, having a structured workout plan can help you make progress and achieve your fitness goals. From basic workouts to HIIT and breathing technique exercises, we've got you covered with the best swim workouts for beginners.

Remember, consistency is key when it comes to seeing results. Start with shorter workouts and gradually increase the length and intensity as you become more comfortable in the water. Don't forget to listen to your body and take breaks when needed.

If you're ready to get started, find a pool near you and jump in!

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