"Learning to swim competitively was the best thing I've done for my body and mind."
I'll be the first to say, learning to swim is tough! It's intimidating and scary so it's not for everyone. You have to be brave and willing to trust the process. At the same time, it is a sport that can be fun and accessible to anyone as long as you follow a few guidelines and tips.
Being an all-star swimmer doesn't happen overnight. It takes water seeping into your goggles, forgetting your swim equipment (the list goes on) but eventually with A LOT of determination and jazz you will become an all-star swimmer.
Learning to swim competitively was the best thing I've done for my body and mind. I probably should thank my parents when they dragged me to my first swim team practice. They watched me take huge gulps of pool water, stopping midway of 25 yards gasping for air and wanting to quit. At age eleven it was tough - fast forward twenty-two years - I love everything about water. And I especially love how happy it makes me feel when I step into its silent ambience.
I'm such an analyzer and critic to myself to a fault - that I could talk myself out of postponing a swim workout. It could be a simple excuse of not getting wet- have we all been there, right?? But once I enter the water I snap out of the negative thinking and appreciate the work done. I am so grateful twenty-two years ago my parents dragged me to swim team practice and I learned how to swim.
Here's some guidelines to learning to swim.
1. Find A Coach and the Best Water
The most important thing to remember if you want to learn to swim is your safety!
If you're just starting out, find a certified Water Safety Instructor or USA Swimming Coach and enroll in private or semi group lessons. Swim lessons will help develop a fun healthy relationship with the water while under supervision. If you're just learning, locate the best water/pool at a local facility or home that gets you excited to return for your next swim practice.
2. Find the Right Swimwear
The second rule is finding the right swimwear.
Just like you love your favorite pair of jeans to wear on girl's night out, swimming is all about finding the right swimwear. Have you seen Tri Sirena collections? There's nothing like setting yourself up for a bad swim practice if your bottoms or top is dragging in the water. Your swim practice becomes more focused on your wardrobe malfunction and thoughts of "am I flashing anyone?" Swimwear should be snug to prevent drag in the water. Try on your swimwear before you head to your next swim practice so there aren’t any surprises.
3. Stay Calm
The most important rule of all when learning to swim is to Stay Calm first - always!
Swimming is about developing comfort and security in yourself as a strong swimmer. The strokes will come to you easier with a calm mindset instead of under frustration or fear. Befriend the water. As a USA Swimming Coach, I encourage our swimmers to visualize their swim practice and meditate for two minutes before hopping in the water. The positive results are reflected in their times and better mindset on and off the pool deck. For now, if you are ready to be a brave and better swimmer, find a coach, best swimwear and stay calm!
I must warn you...once you finish your first 25 yard or meter or length easily, it's addicting! The water will take hold of you and there's no other option than to give in and enjoy the process of learning to swim. STAY CALM, BE HUMBLE, STAY PERSISTENT, DETERMINED, AND HAVE FUN!
Written By: Anna Beth Foyt, Tri Sirena Siren Luminary
Follow Anna Beth on Facebook @anna.b.roberts.9
Have tips for first time swimmers? Let us know in the comments below!
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