Having the ability to swim is an essential life skill, but those who are afraid of even getting wet will avoid swim lessons altogether if most swim lessons make them go straight into the water. If you enter the pool afraid, you are likely to panic at some point during your learning process and quit the lessons. Children of non-swimmers often don’t get enough swimming practice to become competent swimmers, causing the problem to persist. Thousands of fearful swimmers need help learning to enjoy the water safely. And here are some of the tips that could help along the way.
Face the Fears
The person who goes into the pool with fear of embarrassment, failure, or being out of control, can’t focus on listening and learning due to a pounding heartbeat and anxiety. It is important that swim instructors learn about fear and anxiety, and how to manage and help soothe them. Moreover, the trainers should start by addressing the fear factor first, and give the students as much time as they need to process their fears. Apart from being a psychological setback, people can experience physical discomfort as a result of fear. Helping the students understand that this is currently not threatening their lives and that they can learn to control is the end goal.
Strengthen Student-Instructor Relationship
Establishing trust and beginning the lesson outside the pool are essential in these situations. Avoid telling the students that there is nothing to be afraid of since it won’t help them cope with the fear. Someone who says such a thing loses credibility immediately. Before a student enters the water, taking their concerns seriously makes them feel safer and motivated to learn.
Explaining the Basics
Explain the properties of buoyancy, how water enters the ears, then goes up the nose, how it goes over our head and anything that might soother the future swimmer’s mind. You can even demonstrate this by entering the water by yourself and acting as it was your second nature. Still make sure that the explaining isn’t overwhelming and that it doesn’t look intimidating. You should practice relaxation methods outside the water first, so they will be readily accessible if needed in the pool.
One Step at a Time
It is important to go slow and accept that the process may be emotional. Still, it is important to keep reminding them of the goal of these lessons. Although many believe it’s impossible to overcome the fear of water, it’s not. Human minds and bodies are perfectly capable of accommodating such situations but with the right approach. This is why taking one step at a time is so important when tutoring someone who has aquaphobia. Embrace the idea that fear of water can be overcome, but don’t diminish its power over people. Swimming instructors can touch lives and save them by sharing their ideas and committing to their work.