Anyone can learn how to swim but a lot of folks are understandably intimidated about jumping into a large body of water, be it a public lake or a private pool.
But no one should be apprehensive about learning how to swim, it’s one of the best ways to get exercise and it’s a whole lot of fun too!
Swimming allows you to utilize all of the important muscles in your body and gives you a total cardio workout without the need to go a gym.
Some of you who are still unsure about whether or not to take swimming lessons might have some questions or concerns as to the level of difficulty. Rest easy, we’ll walk you through all of the basics you can expect to encounter when you step into the water.
Get in the Water
Swimming means water and this is often the biggest hurdle to overcome for anyone lacking the confidence to proceed. Don’t panic, you can do this part and there are a couple of ways to go about it.
Most pools will have steps that lead to the shallow end. If yours does not, there will be a set of steps located at the side accompanied by a handrail. This is the safest and most secure method of getting in because you can do it at your own pace and comfort level.
Just be sure that when you reach the bottom of the stairs that the floor of the pool is shallow enough for you to stand upright well above the surface of the water.
The Basics of Floatation
Swimming for beginners starts with understanding your own buoyancy as not everyone will naturally float at the top of the water. However, each and every one of us does have the ability to remain at the surface by employing simple swimming techniques.
But don’t worry about all of that for the moment. You just need to get comfortable in the water. So relax and get a feel for the water. When you gain a little more confidence you may try to submerge yourself under completely but for a few seconds.
This will help you get a better gauge of your buoyancy and introduce you to the other essential component necessary for learning how to swim. Breathing.
How to Breathe
The body’s natural reflex is to take in oxygen in order to, well, survive. Here is where the most substantial barrier exists for those who are afraid of swimming – holding your breath.
Since we are not fish and cannot breathe underwater, learning how to breathe as you swim is going to be a vital next step in the process.
You can begin by taking a deep breath and sticking your head under the water for a brief moment or two. Come back up when you feel like you need to do so. Repeat that action until you feel comfortable holding your breath under the water and can extend your time under the surface.
These basic techniques will help you gain a comfort level that allows you to go to the next phase and try a variety of swimming styles that incorporate your arms and legs for moving you through the water.