Happy July, Adult Lessons Swimmers!
This week we continue to chug along on our journey with deep water progressions. First and foremost, do not forget to commend yourself for just getting in! Being willing to hop in deep water is much an accomplishment in and of itself. Last week, we took a journey underneath the waves and worked on depth comfort with the use of the deep water ladder. This allowed us to measure our learning vertically to accompany the horizontal skills we have learned thus far. Float transitions, this week's topic, offer up a great recovery method to better understand the shift from back float to front float, and vice versa. Keys to survival interplay with keys to relaxation, and hope to further personal agency in deep water locales.
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There are many different methods to flip from back to stomach in the water, whether using the seal roll (long axis) technique or the aforementioned tuck technique (short axis). The most important thing is that we find OUR comfortable means by which we can rotate our bodies when needed. The benefit of using the tuck technique, however, is that it provides a similar positional relief as the back float recovery when in shallow water. It helps to be able to translate these skills at any depth, but how you recover from from front to back generally becomes a matter of preference.
Translating this to a functionality discussion, one of the subtle themes we like to hint at with the deep water series is agency. What is agency, you may ask? In swimming terms, it is a swimmer's ability to elicit control over his/her action, or action which produces a particular effect or result. Consider the agency a byproduct of front-to-back float transitions, among all the other drills we discuss. These transitions are just a precursor to having fun - see it as truly "playing around" in deep water! We've come such a long way from just getting in that there should be nothing stopping us from keeping the progress at full steam ahead!
Fact of the week: As mentioned in a previous week, a large fraction of a person's discomfort in deep water, or water in general, stems from lack of control (see this article on the "Locus of Control" for enrichment!). It's natural to fear a medium where you cannot firmly plant your hands and/or feet on a solid surface. In isolation, floating is still allocating control to the water you swim in, which is why these float transitions are important in building a sense of command for your feel in the water. Think of it this way - if you're swimming in a lake or the ocean and you get flipped over by a wave, what is the first technique you can turn to that will ensure you can recenter yourself and breathe? Thus, we have our float transitions.
How do I move up? Attend as many of your classes as possible, communicate with your instructor on your struggles, goals, and where you're at in our curriculum. We also have many adults who purchase a gym membership to 24 Hour Fitness or LA Fitness while they are taking lessons so they can practice 2-3 times between classes.
Transition into your next deep water adventure! It's the best time of the year to be learning how to swim as an adult!
The Sigma Team