The eggbeater kick is a hands-free form of treading water that allows the swimmer to remain vertical. It is a style of kicking where the swimmer’s legs alternate one-legged breaststroke kicks. This form provides continuous support because there is no break in the kick.

The eggbeater kick allows the swimmer to freely use their hands,remain stable in the water without swaying, maintain a constant vertical position, and conserve energy. However, it is also difficult to learn, requires a lot of practice, and can cause knee problems due to the circular rotation of the knee joint.


  • Lifeguards must demonstrate they know how to use this kick because it allows them to use their hands to rescue victims. If lifeguards were to use another form of treading water they would be preoccupied with their hands, making them unable to help a drowning victim.


In a schematized manner, a swimmer treading water using the eggbeater kick is:

  • In a sitting position;
  • has knees bent at almost 90 degrees;
  • has legs a little wider than shoulder width;
  • rotates the legs towards himself, in opposite timing, such as that the left leg moves clockwise, and the right counterclockwise.

Swimmers learning this stroke naturally use their hands to scull and tread water, as they attempt to achieve sufficient lift from the kick to remain afloat. The eggbeater kick can be seen as sculling with the legs, as it relies on the same fundamental physics