Swimming is widely known for its health benefits, and what’s more, it’s fun!
It can reduce stress more than any other sport, helps keep blood pressure low, reduces the risk of heart disease, and much more. So why isn’t everyone doing it? If you’re not already a confident or regular swimmer, swimmer, Well, we understand the thought of it can be a bit daunting, so we have some tips on getting the confidence to get your swim on.
Walking to the swimming pool
It’s completely natural to shiver at the thought of the walk to the pool. But, it shouldn’t be. Everyone in and around the pool is there for one reason, and that is for their love of the water.
Finding a swimsuit or shorts that you're comfortable in is key to boosting your confidence. Make sure yours is supportive and allows you to move your arms and legs freely. Take a deep breath and own that walk to the pool. Once you’re there you will feel on top of the world, and in no time, you’ll forget any worries!
Getting water in your eyes
Getting water in your eyes isn’t the nicest feeling, especially if you wear contact lenses, but luckily there is a simple answer out there – goggles. You may have had a terrible pair of goggles as a child that were leaky, felt uncomfortable, or left marks around your eyes for the rest of the day, but goggles have come a long way since then.
Take Zoggs Original Predator Flex, for example. They’re designed to have a super comfortable fit, great field of vision and stay secure no matter how long you swim – definitely no worries about water getting in!
If you’re not used to swimming or are nervous about the water, the thought of swimming underwater can feel quite daunting at first.
One of the best ways to overcome a fear of putting your head in is by swimming with someone you trust. They will be able to help push you out of your comfort zone, whilst also offering the support you need to overcome this obstacle. What’s more, swimming with friends is a great motivator in general – so this one is a two birds sort of answer.
Just remember, it can take time to feel comfortable about putting your head underwater, so be kind to yourself and give yourself the time to get used to it. It’s time well spent because once you do overcome your fear, there’ll be no stopping you. You will then be able to develop your stroke technique so that you can swim further, faster and for longer in comfort.
You aren’t a strong swimmer
Even the greats weren’t always able to swim. A little bit of practice will go a long way, so the best thing you can do is to dive right in. Even if it starts with half a length or a steady breaststroke in the slow lane, keep at it.
Focus on improving your technique, whilst gradually introducing some high exertion and stamina drills, such as kicking, timed lengths and longer distances. Work within your capability, but always compete with yourself to do it a little bit better, faster or even just with greater ease. In no time you will be able to swim further and faster.
This video explains some of the most commonly used strokes.
I’ll look stupid
You would be surprised by how many adults can't swim very well, or can't swim at all.
You only have to head to the pool to see the vast array of strokes, styles and swimming techniques to realise you are definitely not alone!
Those who can’t swim will be admiring of your efforts to learn and improve. Those who are already competent swimmers will recall their own learning to swim journey and will be respectful of your commitment to learning or improving.
The swimming community is a friendly one, and on the whole, you are likely to meet people who are happy to share their love of the water with you… and maybe even their lane!
I don’t know how to improve
If you’re struggling for inspiration, or aren’t sure what you can do to improve your stroke technique, it may help you to go along to some adult swimming lessons or training sessions.
There is plenty on offer out there starting at lessons for complete beginners, right through to advanced classes focused on optimising triathlon performance or getting you ready for your first open water swim.
The swim teacher will put together a session that focuses on different elements of improving your stroke, stamina and strength, and will also be able to give you personal tips on how to improve.
Classes are also a great way to meet like-minded people who you can share your swimming journey with, so there’s an excellent social benefit too.