Benefits of Swimming Lessons for Adults
We are lucky in the UK to have swimming now as part of the National Curriculum. Most children learn a bit of swimming at school and for lots of people, that exposure in school, along with trips to the seaside and local baths, is enough to spark a lifelong interest in swimming. It’s actually one of the most popular sports in the country. Yet nearly a third of adults in the UK aren’t able to swim confidently or even at all.
At Swim Now, we have many adult swim lesson clients – people who are learning or re-learning how to swim as adults. There are plenty of different reasons why they’ve waited to learn how to swim correctly. Some of the most common are:
- Fear of water
- Bad past experiences
- Lack of opportunity to swim
Let’s take a look at what a beginner adult lesson programme might include.
When kids get into the pool for their first lesson, some of them are a bit nervous. Usually, they soon get over it with some games and a bit of splashy fun. Adults aren’t so easily distracted if they are feeling anxious! Swimming requires some mental fortitude and building trust between you and your teacher is very important. Some of the asks from your teacher may feel very challenging, so the first thing is getting accustomed to simply being in the water.
- Getting wet – It seems obvious, but it can be tough if you’re not used to it! You’re going to have to get wet to swim. Your teacher might have you lower yourself to your shoulders, wash your face with the pool water, and/or lean back while holding the side to get the back of your head wet. If you feel confident with that, maybe you can try holding your breath and going underwater.
- Breathing basics – Holding breath while dunking under is fine. But learning how to actively breathe out under the water is a useful skill, even in early lessons. It will help prevent water from going up your nose, and it will lead to better swimming later.
- Floating – Being able to comfortably float on your back isn’t just for chilling out. It’s a safety skill. Your teacher may support you in the water or have you use the side of the pool or a float to help you get into position until you feel very confident. Tucking the legs and sitting up to return to standing is also part of this coordination practice. This will help you understand how to trust the water—it will hold you up if you can find the right position.
- Starting to swim – Once you’re reasonably comfortable in the water, and you can get your feet off the floor, it’s time to swim. Using supportive equipment, the teacher will help you isolate your legs or arms to practice specific skills. The floats will help you stay at the top of the water so you can focus on technique. In this way, you’ll learn faster how to swim properly.
- Building confidence, honing skills – Everyone’s pace is different, but with determination, trust and effort, you will soon be able to swim. No floats are required.
Fitness and finesse
Some adults come to lessons who already are able to swim. Some move on from beginner’s sessions ready for something more demanding.
These swimmers come to the pool with varying abilities and have different goals in mind. They often want to:
- Develop water confidence
- Improve fitness or skills
- Rehabilitate with a medical or physio referral
For these swimmers, our teachers will have a chat. What do they want to achieve? Often people want to improve a specific stroke or learn a new one. Sometimes people have a holiday coming up, and they want to be able to be in the pool or ocean with their friends. Others may have swimming recommended to build strength around an injury or to improve general fitness.
In each of these cases, our teachers will:
- Gauge stroke ability – The teacher will ask to see you swim. They may want to see the stroke you’re best at or the one you want to improve. This will help them understand what your general ability is and what you need to work on.
- Start to formulate a customised plan – Every person is different. A person might be physically fit but scared to get their face in the water. Another might be fearless but not a great technical swimmer. What’s needed will be totally personalised to you.
- Provide clear, tailored instruction – It might be learning a whole new skill or perhaps just tweaking techniques here and there. Everyone gets what they need to make improvements to their swimming.
- Show your progress – When you’re in the thick of it, it can be hard to tell if you’re really making gains. And fitness training always has ups and downs. So our teachers will be your cheerleaders, too. When you think you’ve not done much, they’ll be able to show you the real, concrete ways you’ve improved since you started. Distance, fitness, strength, skills.
These are some of the typical clients we see. We also coach people towards competitive swimming, including triathlons. And we even prepare people for snorkelling, scuba diving and other deepwater activities.
If you’re interested in improving your swimming skills or you are starting on your swimming journey – contact Swim Now and let’s chat.