Many individuals suffer from a fear of the water. Often, this fear stems from a negative experience they endured when they were young, such as being pushed into a pool and nearly drowning. It is a sad situation to find yourself in, but there are ways to go about overcoming your fear of water. One thing to consider is that the water holds you up as it is its nature. This knowledge can help you to overcome your fear and allow you to become the swimmer that you never thought you could be.
Grab a Buddy
The first step you can take toward overcoming your fear of swimming and water is to find yourself a buddy to go to the pool with. Even better, a friend who shares your fear will be of utmost support, and you can reciprocate that support to him or her.
Relax and Envision a Soothing Place
Start off slowly when you approach the pool. Sit at its side and simply dangle your feet into the water, and try to keep as relaxed as possible. Take deep and even breaths and exhale slowly. Envision a place where you feel safe as this can help you to feel more at ease when you are at poolside. Slowly enter the pool at the shallow end with your friend and engage in a soothing conversation. You can soon feel comfortable enough to learn how to do the easiest move in the water, which is the dog paddle.
Teach Yourself the Dog Paddle
The dog paddle is an easy maneuver to learn and even teach yourself. It will keep you afloat in the water and provides you with excellent aerobic activity. To begin learning, hold onto the side of the pool and lift one of your legs, bringing it down at the knee in a repetitive, slow kicking motion. Do the same with your other leg.
When you feel comfortable with your legs, you can begin performing the same motion with your arms. Turn away from the side of the pool and face the water. Keep your elbows bent with your arms in front of you and make a forward motion with them in an alternative fashion. You can practice by using both your arms and legs and will find that you can do the dog paddle and stay afloat in the water.
Once you have mastered the art of the dog paddle, you will feel more at ease in the water and can begin to learn other activities such as the backfloat or start taking swimming lessons at SwimJim. These are great ways to overcome a fear of water because they will keep you at the water’s surface and are actually comforting.
About the Author
Kristene Blackham is a freelance writer and a lover of the outdoors and traveling. She uses her spare time with her husband and cat. Her dream is to travel the world one day and try all the amazing food.