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Multiple Benefits to Swimming

Updated on February 21, 2011

Can you swim?

Where is your favorite place to swim? Is it inyour backyard swimming pool, public pool, school pool, pool at the gym, at the beach, ocean, river, stream, pond, or lake. Swimming is a lifetime activity or sport that gives us beneficial results in the area of your health, and it helps to develop your general strength, relaxes your muscles, and it’s a great means of cardio vascular fitness.

Swimming is the movement through water, it’s a great activity for the entire family, it is fun, relaxing, and it is a great way to get some good exercise and promote a healthy lifestyle. I enjoy the water but unfortunately I am not a swimmer, try though I may, I can’t seem to shake the fear of letting go into the deep. I can at this time go just a few feet out but as soon as I become conscious that I am going out further I begin to panic and stop, I guess I feel that if my feet can’t touch the ground or I can’t get anything to hold on to I will drown. I know that God did not give us the spirit of fear but of love, power, and a sound mind so I want to get over this fear, I know it’s just my mind dictating to my body and I should not listen, but I haven’t quiet figure out how to make it work for me as yet. I know through Jesus Christ I have the power within me to overcome this obstacle.

Swimming prepare you for emergencie

Being able to swim gives you a strong sense of empowerment, I remember a few years back I was watching a TV show called “The Poseidon Adventure” it’s about this big cruise liner that set sail and crashed, the ship turned upside down and sank to the bottom of the ocean, a flood of water immediately flooded the ship, and there were numerous amount of fire at different stations in the ship leaving the survivors to fend for themselves, and to figure out how to get to the top of the ship for safety and a means of escape.

The quest for safety took them through many twist and turns but there were two particular scenes that stuck out most in my mind, and that was when Shelly Winters had to swim a distance underwater holding her breath for a long period of time. This woman was very overweight but she was fierce, she died trying to make it through. Another scene was about a young girl that couldn’t swim and she was so scared, she panicked all the way, but eventually the other people calmed her to the point that they got her to do as they instructed her, and they helped guide her through the water to safety.

 I put myself in their shoes, I could identify with both ladies; I saw myself in Shelly because of the weight issue, and I could identify with the young girl because she couldn’t swim. From that day I have a yearning within me to learn to swim and I have taken baby steps toward swimming but have not taken the final steps toward getting a teacher to properly instruct me in the art of swimming.

However I did keep a promise to myself that I would make sure all my children would learn to swim and they all did. I often think what would I do in the case of emergency involving water, and how would I be able to help myself? This is a very scary thing to think about and I don’t really know why I have procrastinated for so long. I tried to figure it out as to what is truly the underlining motive of this fear, and I have come up with a few things that I can reflect back on which I’ll share with you.

 A couple of time I was at the beach and different people had came up behind me and caught me off guard pushing me into the water and I panicked, I felt myself grasping for breath and its not a nice feeling at all. I don’t trust anyone when it come to the water and me, maybe that’s it, or could it be related to certain things in my past, where I had trusted certain male friends to teach me to swim, and their hands got a bit too friendly, this made me very uncomfortable and untrusting of lying across a person’s hands in the water.

Swimming for fun and relaxation

Anywhere water is I am the most comfortable, calm and relaxed person around, water is very soothing to me and my mind freely roams. I feel closer to God when I am staring out in the deep blue and marveling at His beautiful creation. With the little that I have learned and applied, when I begin to swim with my head under water I find my mind go totally blanked and my body becomes light in the water as the water glides me forward as I move my hands and feet, but there is a certain point at which I become very aware of what’s happening and where I am. This sudden realization that I am going out too far into the deep hits me and I fearfully aware that I can’t swim there, and at that point I’ll panic because I know there is no one right there to help me. If I am in the water with someone by my side to watch me and they are capable of helping me in case I got in trouble, then I am more secure and am a bit more willing and comfortable to venture out future in the deep end of the pool.

There is a lot of fun and activities you can have in the water and it can be enjoyed by all such as volleyball; I have watched it but never participated because I cannot swim. Diving looks like fun and I have watched on the side lines as people participates in water activities and just having a blast.

Water parks such as “Wet & Wild” in Orlando Florida is a very nice place to go and have some recreational fun with the family, I’ll watch the people go up to the various height rides and slide down in rubber tubing into the water, and I would be envious of their confidence and ability to swim, but yet again I do not pursue the avenue that would lead me to do the same.

Water activities are fun and it’s a time and place when you set your worries aside and let yourself be free to be a kid again, it’s something about the water that brings out the kid in a person. The water makes you feel free and inhibited, whether you are actually in the water enjoying swimming, splashing or dipping or whether you stay to the side and curl up with a good book and catch some rays, and listen to music you are going to feel relaxed for the time you are there, and that’s a good thing.

Jennifer Thompson
Jennifer Thompson
Dara Torres
Dara Torres
Dara and Baby girl
Dara and Baby girl

Swimming Professionally - Olympics

Swimming can also be a career, it is a profession that many athletes has succeeded at, and it’s evident as you watch the  Olympics, as the various athletes compete with each other from around the world. Swimming at this level takes a great deal of work, discipline, and dedication; these athletes have to be mentally and physically prepared for the challenge of this very strenuous activity in order to achieve their optimum success.

There have been many great swimmers around the world that have won the gold, silver, and bronze medal over the years at the Olympics such as Michael Phelps: he won 8 medals in the summer Olympics of 2004 in Athens, and 6 of the 8 are gold medals. Mark Spitz was one of greatest athletes; he won 7 gold medals at the 1972 Olympics in Munich, setting the record in all 7 events. Jennifer Beth Thompson; she won 12 Olympics medals for the USA in the Summer Olympics of 1992, 1996, 2000, and 2004, she’s the most decorated Olympian in swimmer’s history. Dara Grace Torres, isthe oldest swimmer to participate in the Olympics, at age 41 she swam on the US Olympic team. She has won 12 Olympic medals (4 gold’s, 4 silvers, and 4 bronze) at age 40, 15 months after giving birth to her first child she won a gold medal at the US Nationals in Indianapolis.

Swimming Promotes Health

Swimming is considered one of the best form of exercise that a person can do to keep physically fit, because it work just about every major muscle in your body. Swimming is an easy and fun way to workout, it is an effective method of exercise in which to help you keep in shape, loose weight, and remain healthy. Swimming burns between 500-600 calories per hour so you can have a blast doing what you enjoy while getting a good workout in the pool.

Swimming improves your lung capacity, strengthens and conditions your heart muscle; improve blood circulation, posture, and flexibility. Your cardiovascular system greatly benefits from this form of exercise because swimming builds endurance and boosts your level of oxygen intake, thereby improving how your body uses oxygen without over working your heart. You can decrees your stress level and even lower your blood pressure as you stick to a consistent work out schedule.

Swimming can be done at any age therefore it’s an excellent activity or exercise for those with joint pains such as the elderly, overweight individuals, or people who have been injured and cannot do vigorous amount of normal stressful activities or exercise in the gym. You are weightless in the water, you weigh 1/10th less in water so therefore you are safe and don’t have to worry about hurting while you are moving and exercising.

Swimming is also used as a form of physical therapy because it is a Low impact sport and it will not hurt your joints in the water. Your joints, tissues, and muscles are protected from stress and strain, and the water will help relax your stiff muscles and increase circulation. People who is suffering from back or knee pain as well as people suffering from any inflammation of the muscles such as Arthritis, is encouraged to participate in swimming and water aerobics activities with a structured program and supervised instructor because it’s beneficial to the entire body.

Swimming helps you to develop stronger muscles, and it tones the muscles in both upper and lower part of your body so enjoy the world of swimming and I hope to join all you swimmers one day very soon.


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    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Swimming is a great sport and a great skill. I have been a lifeguard and swim instructor for around 8-9 years now, and I can say it is definitely great that you made sure all your children learned to swim! I have worked with adults before, so I'll say you definitely can learn to swim - even if you have a fear of the water. I would personally recommend that you contact a local Y, JCC, Swim Club etc. for lessons. If you have another adult friend who is interested in learning to swim, perhaps the two of you could take lessons together? I know this helps lessen fear for a lot of our adult learners, and that sometimes the friends can be a great encouragement to one another. I would also recommend that you do private 1-on-1 lessons or w/ another person you know (at least to start) instead of a group. Make sure that when you schedule lessons you ask for an instructor who has experience teaching adults!

    • jagandelight profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from Florida

      Good for you cathylynn99, you turn your adversity into triumph. Thanks for sharing your story, it will give me something to reflect back on, and motivate me to go for it and learn to swim.

    • cathylynn99 profile image


      7 years ago from northeastern US

      used to be an assistant swim instructor.

      i almost drowned as a toddler, so was afraid of deep water. swimming lessons got me over that. i became a lifeguard and a competitive swimmer.

    • jagandelight profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from Florida

      thanks for the advice cathylynn99.

      I am very near to a pool now, all I need is someone competent and strong to teach me to swim. I am ready to finally learn once and for all, in the mean time I will try what you say. God Bless you.

      Are you a swim instructor?

    • cathylynn99 profile image


      7 years ago from northeastern US

      jagandelight, try floating on your back with yourchin tilted up and your back arched slightly (tummy up). i believe you will not be able to sink this way and can gradually increase your trust of the water. you can kick to move around on your back. this is how i've taught children who are beginning swimmers. i think lessons would help you greatly. don't give up.

    • jagandelight profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from Florida

      2besure, thanks for stopping by and giving me your support.

      Go for it, get in that suit and swim, don't let nothing stop you from doing what you want to do.

    • 2besure profile image

      Pamela Lipscomb 

      7 years ago from Charlotte, North Carolina

      Swimming is such an all around great exercise. I have not been in a bathing suit for 30 years. I would love to swim again.


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