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I have a love/hate relationship when it comes to swimming. While I'm UNDER the water, I swim fairly well. However, I have a VERY difficult time staying on the surface of the water. I sink like a rock, to the point where I can literally stand on the bottom of the pool and walk about with absolutely no issue (think Link wearing the Iron Boots in the Water Temple from Ocarina of Time). I was wondering if I could get some tips on floating?

LEVEL III ASSASSIN-MONK

STR: 8   STA: 10

AGI: 10   WIS: 5

CON: 7   CHA: 4

We must DARE to be GREAT;

and we must realize that GREATNESS is

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So when you are floating is it your legs that are sinking and then dragging the rest of you down? Because that is what happens to me. I have to tilt my hips to the floor and keep my legs up towards the surface and I manage to float for a lot longer; normally until I run out of breath or until I get tired of doing breathing exercises.

Between a rock and a hard place, use our finger nails to climb, it's all we know..........

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So, um, swimming is a time where really dense muscle mass is a disadvantage to you. What you may have to do, and this will take a lot of practice, is work in the shallow end at first, because it is less traumatizing when you sink, because you will sink trying this at first, and practice breathing in a regular pace, with full lungfuls of air so that your upper body and face will remain above the surface.  You may get a bob going when you slowly exhale, but that is okay, and your chest may sink a bit. While you breathe, you want to try to keep your body in line, which basically means: if you lift your head up out of the water for any reason, even just the tiniest bit out of alignment with your spine, you will sink. But you want to relax your shoulders, round out your hips, and keep your toes just beneath the surface if you can swing it. 

 

But of major importance: fill up your lungs and keep your head in line with your spine

 

It will not be perfect immediately, you will have to practice, and it will be difficult.

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So, um, swimming is a time where really dense muscle mass is a disadvantage to you. What you may have to do, and this will take a lot of practice, is work in the shallow end at first, because it is less traumatizing when you sink, because you will sink trying this at first, and practice breathing in a regular pace, with full lungfuls of air so that your upper body and face will remain above the surface.  You may get a bob going when you slowly exhale, but that is okay, and your chest may sink a bit. While you breathe, you want to try to keep your body in line, which basically means: if you lift your head up out of the water for any reason, even just the tiniest bit out of alignment with your spine, you will sink. But you want to relax your shoulders, round out your hips, and keep your toes just beneath the surface if you can swing it. 

 

But of major importance: fill up your lungs and keep your head in line with your spine

 

It will not be perfect immediately, you will have to practice, and it will be difficult.

 

Thanks! I'll definitely be trying this. I appreciate it!

LEVEL III ASSASSIN-MONK

STR: 8   STA: 10

AGI: 10   WIS: 5

CON: 7   CHA: 4

We must DARE to be GREAT;

and we must realize that GREATNESS is

the FRUIT of TOIL and SACRIFICE and HIGH COURAGE

 

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What I usually tell my kids when I used to coach was to stick their stomachs out like Santa Claus. There's something magical about using those hips to help you float. Now, that's for floating on your back.

 

When you are swimming on your stomach (e.g. freestyle), I suggest using flippers to try and get you used to swimming, especially if you're using swimming trunks to swim (and not jammers or briefs --I know that stuff looks crazy, but it actually helps). The reason why is because swimming is a core sport. You need to be able to work out all parts of your body in order to stay afloat--your abs, your arms, your hips, your thighs, your calves, your hands, your legs, your head--EVERYTHING needs to be in synchronization in order for you to glide across that pool. Or even floating --if you ask me to just float on my stomach, I assure you that I am using every single muscle of my body in order to do so.

 

What the flippers will do for you is that they will help you develop your form better. They basically FORCE you to swim a certain way; otherwise, the flippers will drag you down even more. Try to alternate between swimming with flippers to get a feel for how it's like to "swim without iron boots on" and then try swimming without the flippers. Maybe even try swimming with one flipper on, one flipper off. Focus on generating power from your thighs/hips more so than your calves. Your calves should be following your core muscles --not the other way around.

 

Ronin is completely right in saying that you will sink if your head is above water, but the only reason why that happens is because your core muscles aren't strong enough to keep your head above water. You can theoretically swim with your head above water and not sink; this is called the Tarzan drill... and it is one of my least favorite drills to do :(:(:( it really hurts your neck! But yeah, keeping your entire body in line will absolutely help. If you ask yourself, "How can I be the most hydrodynamic? How can I make my body easily cut through the water like a boat, using the least amount of movement/energy?" and you can answer those questions, then you, my friend, have mastered swimming.

 

Let me know if you have any questions. I hope this helps --I'm much better at explaining/demonstrating in person than describing it in words :/

 

P.S. Kudos to the Zelda reference. Love that!

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What I usually tell my kids when I used to coach was to stick their stomachs out like Santa Claus. There's something magical about using those hips to help you float. Now, that's for floating on your back.

 

When you are swimming on your stomach (e.g. freestyle), I suggest using flippers to try and get you used to swimming, especially if you're using swimming trunks to swim (and not jammers or briefs --I know that stuff looks crazy, but it actually helps). The reason why is because swimming is a core sport. You need to be able to work out all parts of your body in order to stay afloat--your abs, your arms, your hips, your thighs, your calves, your hands, your legs, your head--EVERYTHING needs to be in synchronization in order for you to glide across that pool. Or even floating --if you ask me to just float on my stomach, I assure you that I am using every single muscle of my body in order to do so.

 

What the flippers will do for you is that they will help you develop your form better. They basically FORCE you to swim a certain way; otherwise, the flippers will drag you down even more. Try to alternate between swimming with flippers to get a feel for how it's like to "swim without iron boots on" and then try swimming without the flippers. Maybe even try swimming with one flipper on, one flipper off. Focus on generating power from your thighs/hips more so than your calves. Your calves should be following your core muscles --not the other way around.

 

Ronin is completely right in saying that you will sink if your head is above water, but the only reason why that happens is because your core muscles aren't strong enough to keep your head above water. You can theoretically swim with your head above water and not sink; this is called the Tarzan drill... and it is one of my least favorite drills to do :(:(:( it really hurts your neck! But yeah, keeping your entire body in line will absolutely help. If you ask yourself, "How can I be the most hydrodynamic? How can I make my body easily cut through the water like a boat, using the least amount of movement/energy?" and you can answer those questions, then you, my friend, have mastered swimming.

 

Let me know if you have any questions. I hope this helps --I'm much better at explaining/demonstrating in person than describing it in words :/

 

P.S. Kudos to the Zelda reference. Love that!

 

This actually makes a TON of sense, especially about generating power from my hips. I totally understand that. All power, it seems, is generated from the hips, whether it be for punching, kicking, or swimming. I'll definitely be working on this. If I continue to struggle staying afloat, I'll look into getting some flippers, but I'm gonna try applying some technique before I do that and see if I can some improvement. Thanks a million, guys!

LEVEL III ASSASSIN-MONK

STR: 8   STA: 10

AGI: 10   WIS: 5

CON: 7   CHA: 4

We must DARE to be GREAT;

and we must realize that GREATNESS is

the FRUIT of TOIL and SACRIFICE and HIGH COURAGE

 

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A big thing I find in the kids I teach lessons to and the adults I teach aquafit to is tension. If your muscles are tense and you're worried about sinking, you probably will. Practice just doing some floats and focus on laying like you would lay in bed, take a deep breath and relax!

 

Syren is probably the most right though, expecially if you have low BF and a lot of muscle, you'll sink for sure.

 

Good luck!

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A big thing I find in the kids I teach lessons to and the adults I teach aquafit to is tension. If your muscles are tense and you're worried about sinking, you probably will. Practice just doing some floats and focus on laying like you would lay in bed, take a deep breath and relax!

 

Syren is probably the most right though, expecially if you have low BF and a lot of muscle, you'll sink for sure.

 

Good luck!

 

Thanks! Anything helps. I don't make it to a pool very often, but I'll be sure to try out all of these techniques and see what works!

LEVEL III ASSASSIN-MONK

STR: 8   STA: 10

AGI: 10   WIS: 5

CON: 7   CHA: 4

We must DARE to be GREAT;

and we must realize that GREATNESS is

the FRUIT of TOIL and SACRIFICE and HIGH COURAGE

 

Link to post

Well last week i could see my kid sinking in the water as you said when he was on the back swimming (during his swimming class...) the teacher told him to look at the seeling, and hop his head was aligned with his body and ...... he floated perfectly... so where you look makes you go where you go.... aligment could be the key ...

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Well last week i could see my kid sinking in the water as you said when he was on the back swimming (during his swimming class...) the teacher told him to look at the seeling, and hop his head was aligned with his body and ...... he floated perfectly... so where you look makes you go where you go.... aligment could be the key ...

 

Thanks! I'm starting to see a trend here.....that trend would be something akin to "common sense", but since I am severely lacking in that regard, it makes sense that I haven't thought of these things.

LEVEL III ASSASSIN-MONK

STR: 8   STA: 10

AGI: 10   WIS: 5

CON: 7   CHA: 4

We must DARE to be GREAT;

and we must realize that GREATNESS is

the FRUIT of TOIL and SACRIFICE and HIGH COURAGE

 

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