Whatever your age, that first swim is bound to be a nerve-wracking experience. Will the water be cold? Will I be able to stand up? There are certain to be questions going round and round your head.
In an attempt to make the experience less of an emotional roller-coaster and to help you get your head around it, we’ve partnered up with our friends at Zoggs to give you our top tips on how to make your first swim fun.
Check out the Swimming Pool in Advance
Starting to swim at a new pool can be daunting, whether you’re on your own or taking your kid for their first swim. It’s a good idea to head down to the leisure centre in advance to make sure you know where everything is. This means that when you walk in for that first session you know where the changing rooms are, the coins you need for the lockers and where the showers are. If you are bringing your child, it’s also a great chance to discover the best route for pushchair access.
While you’re there, why not have a chat to reception about the best swim times and sessions for you. If you are taking your baby for their first swim, Everyone Active runs adult and child swimming lessons as well as family swim sessions that are perfect for you and your family.
If you’re looking for the perfect session for yourself, the reception staff will be able to talk you through their adult swimming program give you an insight into what times might be quieter than others. Now you know your way around and the perfect time to visit you’re all prepared. Now head home and get your kit together.
Collect Your kit Together at Home
Leave plenty of time to get your swim kit together, there is nothing worse than running out of the house and you realise you’ve forgotten your pants. Take your time and if need be, make a list to ensure you remember everything. Additionally, why not get changed at home, this limits the time in the changing room, avoiding the stress of watching the kids and ensures you won’t be turning back. Once you have your costume on you have no choice but to swim. Preparation is key, if you know where everything is and that you’ve have brought everything you need those initial questions should slowly disappear.
Take Equipment you Have Confidence in
There is nothing worse than feeling nervous about a swim and trying out new equipment you do not trust yet. Make sure you take equipment that you have trust and confidence in: goggles that don’t leak or swimwear that supports you and you can walk out in confidence. If you’re struggling to find those trusty goggles, take a look at our goggle fit guide before your next visit. For you baby take along their favourite bath toys, this will help them relate the pool with the fun they have in the bath and will help you both feel more at ease. Buoyancy aids (trainer seats/swim rings) can also be helpful allowing both of you to have a little freedom (NOTE: Children should not be left unsupervised in a buoyancy aid they are is not a lifesaving device). If you have all your trusty kit the nerves will quickly melt fly away and allow you to relax and have fun.
You’ve done it! You’ve taken the plunge and had you’re first swim and it’s not as bad as you thought? But now you don’t want to get out into the cold air. Make sure you have a cosy towel ready for you on the side of the pool and wrap up as soon as you exit the water. Particularly with young children they can lose heat very quick so it is good to keep the towels nearby.
Swimming is very hungry work, so make sure you have a snack with you to eat when you’ve finished. While we always want a cheeky treat from those vending machines, make sure you are helping your body recover from your swim. Try to choose those foods that have a low Glycaemic Index (GI), there are a wide variety of fruits and vegetables rich in vitamins and some lean proteins.
There you go you’re done! You have conquered those nerves and dived into your first swim with ease.
Don’t Forget to Have fun
It is very difficult to make something fun if you’re nervous and panicking. Make sure you relax and take the experience in, as this will help when it comes to shaking those nerves off. If it helps take someone with you for moral support – everyone needs their own cheerleaders.
Why not give some of these tips a go and if you haven’t been swimming, dive in this year, we can guarantee you won’t regret it. Once you jump in you will never look back.