I am particularly thrilled to write about this topic. This is because it finally gives me an opportunity to share my first swimming experience which maybe highly relatable to first timers like myself.
The above quote, makes this write-up much easier to begin. Swimming like anything else is a deliberate sport or exercise, this depends largely on the individual. Swimming, could be seen as a relaxation exercise for many persons or just an entertainment for other people. whatever view a person has of swimming does not make the actual exercise any less demanding if one looks to learn, but it may fuel one’s desire to learn even more.
My first swimming encounter
Before now, I have turned down all swimming invites by friends but somehow along the line I came across something, some phrase that summarize facing one’s biggest fears and my mind immediately flew to swimming and after a while of pondering. I decided to give it a shot and so I called a friend of mine who I knew was a good swimmer. I mean of course, if I was going to do this, I needed someone who is skilled just in case things went askew.
The D-day was here, and we set out to a hotel I had clear idea on the details of their swimming pool. I had been sitting with my trunk observing people jump in and taking charge of the water, throwing a ball and catching it like they had some invisible fins and I observed them both keenly and admirably. Amongst them included my friend. Finally, the time came for me to face my fears and I found my feet. He urged me on and I obliged.
A lot of people put off learning how to swim because they’re afraid of the unknown, and a good mishap is drowning and yes they do occur. I carefully moved to the part of the pool I’d like to term the entrance, since it had the railings and from there I gently introduced my feet into the water.
Once my feet moved away from the railing I could literally feel myself helpless and it dawned on me that I was aqua-phobic so I tried to find my balance but only ended up gulping in more water. My friend had immediately moved over and pulled my face up from underneath.
I learnt two peculiar things that day. First, that things aren’t always what they seemed. I mean I first thought that i could handle to an extent the pool like others did when I was just watching from my vantage point until I was in it. Secondly, that somethings are better done with an instructor.
Having read my personal story above. Here is a good guide on how to swim. Yet, note that most swimming accident could be prevented by simple safety measures.
Always go swimming with someone: Do not swim alone, always go with someone who is a better swimmer than yourself if not several people. Pick places with a lifeguard especially if you are just learning to swim for the first time.
Start out swimming in stagnant water: As a learner start with a pool avoid moving water bodies like an ocean or river. If you must learn to swim in a moving water be sure to have a really good swimming instructor.
Get Goggles: It’s much easier to see underwater if you wear goggles. Goggles also help make swimming more comfortable because they prevent water from getting into your eyes.allowing you see clearer while your head is beneath the surface.
Learn to float: If you are learning how to swim as an adult, you might struggle real hard to keep your face in the water because you will feel uncomfortable. But you need to learn to get comfortable with it since just about every stroke of swimming requires your face to be underwater. When you’re in the water, hold on to the side of the pool or a dock, and let your legs float out behind you, ease in as much as possible when you do your legs should lift easily. But, many for some reason, sink to the bottom, while their upper body floats. Retry this step, do same on your stomach and on your back(stick to the shallow area of the pool, so you can simply stand up if it get difficult. You may also have to get used to having water around your ears while your nose and mouth are in the air but that’s part of the process) until you get used to allowing half of your body float.
Don’t Fret: Always ensure you have a fallback if you’re in a bad spot or deep depth or even feeling any sort of immobility. A useful tip for floating on your back while swimming is by holding your breath and have lungs full of air. Another is by allowing your stomach stick out.
But if you still can’t get a hang of it, don’t fret; rather lie as flat as you can on your back, and let the water carry you while you regain composure.
Make the water your friend: This may require more time for persons who are aqua-phobic. Gaining confidence and becoming good at swimming requires that you spend sufficient time in the water, this is the only way to become friends with water. The more time you spend, the more comfortable you get to feel and the better you’ll become.
Practice exhaling underwater: While you’re still in a shallow depth, take a deep breath and put your face underwater. Slowly exhale out your nose until you’re out of breath, then come back up. Bubbles should come out. You can also exhale out of your mouth, but usually in big bubbles until you finally let out a stream of bubble or try exhaling through your mouth wearing a nose plug.
Use Fins: When learning freestyle in water, using fins can be invaluable for that purpose, especially in the beginning.
Enroll For Swimming Lessons: To learn how to swim as an adult, it’s recommended that you take lessons from someone with experience. That way, you get to learn proper stroke technique from the beginning and faster.