It’s never too late to learn to swim
According to Total Swimming “1 in 3 children now leave primary school unable to swim – up from the previously reported figure of 1 in 5.” UK adults don’t fare much better, with almost 20% unable to manage 25m in the pool. This means than a large number of Brits are missing out on one of the most beneficial types of exercise around, and potentially putting themselves at risk every time they go near a body of water.
Luckily, it’s never too late to learn to swim. Though the thought of getting in the pool can be daunting, especially for anyone afraid of water, it’s possible for people of all ages to overcome their mental barriers and get paddling.
Once you learn to swim, you’ll be able to jump right in at the deep end and a have a whale of a time. However, until the day you can put your rubber armbands away for good, you need to take things slowly. Water can be dangerous, so treat it will respect. Begin by playing around in the shallow end with some floats to build up your confidence in the water. Get used to putting your face in the water and then try get comfortable putting your whole head under. Take a good swimmer, that you know well, with you to give you a few pointers and make sure you don’t get into any trouble.
Find someone with experience teaching adults
If you’re learning to swim as a grown up, you probably don’t want to be lumped in with the kids, so try to find a teacher who’s used to working with adults. They’ll be able to walk you through the basics at your own pace, taking any fears or phobias you’ve developed over the years into account. A lot of councils in the UK offer swimming courses for adults, get in touch with your local leisure centre to find out if there’s one available near you.
Set yourself a goal
As with any challenge, it’s important to set yourself a goal if you’re going to succeed. You could plan to swim 100m by the end of the month, sign up for a charity swim–a-thon or simply bet a friend or relative you can hit a certain goal. Giving yourself something concrete to work towards will help to keep motivation levels high and give you a better chance of success.
If you never learned to swim, don’t let age put you off. Get in the water now and you’ll be off and going before you know it.