Shoulder driven freestyle
More of a sprinters technique for short distances - I don't usually teach open water swimmers and triathletes this technique as they are generally racing for much longer distances than pool swimmers.
Hip Driven freestyle
The majority of swimmers I would teach this technique to - it creates a nicely balanced stroke with the potential to execute each of the swimming phases effectively.
For a number of triathletes /open water swimmers and middle distance pool swimmers this hybrid style technique is a great way to develop an individuals freestyle. Generally an individuals freestyle will have a strong and weak side which can be to do with flexibility, a dominant breathing side and sometimes a limited ability to drive both sides of the body rotation (some people just can't feel this).
The hybrid freestyle technique encourages
- A quick catch on one side (non breathing side) - shoulder driven technique
- Breathing side a more hip driven technique - holding the arm a little longer out the front
- Strong kick technique is helpful to drive this
Use a fast and slow count to help you with each stroke. On your breathing side have a slow count (ooooonnnnnnneeeeeeee) as you take the stroke through the water, then you must hold your other arm at the surface of the water and as you soon as you get your head down from breathing initiate the catch of your other arm.
The reason for this technique is that a large number of swimmers use their lead arm to push down on the water to support their breathing position. By doing this a large amount of drag is created and the arm movement (pushing down) is un-productive in helping you move forward.
Learn about each of the techniques and if you want to skip to learning about the Hybrid Freestyle Technique then shoot through to 4:55 on this video.
Watch this video above from 4:55 to learn about the Hybrid Freestyle Technique - https://youtu.be/b746O3Ltz44?t=4m55s