A focus on swim technique should be a regular part of your training plan. For the adult learner, beginner, intermediate or recreational swimmer, and those hoping to get faster, technique and balance training will go a long way toward improving efficiency.
If you are having great difficulty, there may be limitations in your movement (flexibility, mobility, stability and strength) that are inhibiting your progress. How you move out of the water affects swimming mechanics. I recommend getting a comprehensive movement assessment (by a qualified coach or physical therapist) then, you can move on to swimming technique.
Getting the body to move right out of the water will go a long way in the water, and beginning with the right breathing is a great first step for everyone.
The video below provides you with a discussion of breathing patterns and practices that you can implement the next time you swim.
More: Breathing Mechanics That Will Help Your Freestyle
Hone your swim technique at a Masters swimming class.