Friday, November 9, 2007

Sit up - How to Stand up in Water

In the realm of swimming, possibly the single most frightening thing that a student will confront is not having the control they are used to in the water, that they have on land. This is particularly true of learning to be on their back.

Most swimming students pick up very quickly how to stand up from a forward position, even if it is only out of desperate panic when they put their face in the water. But once on their back, almost all new students are completely mystified on how to get to their feet.

The factor that I've found the most successful in helping to overcome this is to teach, very early on, how to stand up in the water from a float position.



The thing that frustrated me was not the method but how to communicate what I wanted them to do.

One of the things that I used to say to them was "push your hands down under the water and stand up". This usually results in the students throwing their head backward into the water as they move their hands. The exact opposite to what I want them to do with their head.

The solution seems obvious. Tell them to put their head forward. But this is only confusing to the student. From their point of view they are putting their head down. Under the water is down isn't it?

So tell them to put their chin on their chest and push their hands down. Don't ask me why but in most cases this still doesn't work. Some how coordination is lost when students try to do this. It may be something to do with the sense they have of the loss of control when swimming or floating on their back. I don't really know.

Over the last few months I hit on the idea of asking the swimming student to sit up from a float position. After all that is what you do when you recover from a float isn't it?

I've been very impressed by the results. After very few attempts most beginner students get it and without me mentioning it they put their chin on their chest push their hands under the water and sit up.

I still have to help the student to begin with. Usually by standing at their heads and holding their hands and pushing them to their hips. Sometimes I need to hold their head and gently put their chin on their chest for them. Which I choose first, head or arms, depends on what they are having the most trouble with. I have not found a way to do both at the same time.

Never the less confidence in the water goes up very quickly. And quicker progress is always good in swimming students.

If I'm not behind the times and you haven't tried it, give it a go. Ask your students too sit up from a float position. Let me know how you go.

Enjoy
   Richard

6 comments:

  1. i m nt able to stand in water,is it becoz of my weight.m skiny?plz tell me how to stand in water.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Dear Anonymouse,
    Be assured that stand in water from a float, front or back, has nothing to do with your size or wait. If you follow the link, "how to stand up in the water from a float position" in the above post or paste the following into your browser http://www.swimteaching.com/2008/03/learn-to-swim-101-recovering-from-that.html, you should get a fuller description with pictures of how to stand up in the water from a float. Once you know the technique all you have to do is overcome your fear at trying it. Perhaps a friend might stand with you to encourage you and make you feel safe.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I am not able to stand in water even though I am 5.30 feet and water level is 4 feet . I have to hold pool wall bar for standing up. If I try putting down my feet while swimming I lose balannce and I am afraid of going under water

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. G'day Pradip,
      I hope you are managing to master your standing in the water. If not please follow the links in this article above and the links in the linked articles. You will find lots of help. If you still have trouble, don't hesitate to get back to me.
      I'm sorry for my long delay in reply. I misunderstood your comment. I thought it was just a comment and it was not until I re read it just now that I realized it was a questions.

      Delete
  4. Hi , I have same problem as that of Pradip
    I am not able to stand in water even though I am 5.05 feet and water level is 4 feet . I have to hold pool wall bar for standing up. If I try putting down my feet while swimming I lose balance and I am afraid of going under water

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. G'day Khushboo,
      Please follow the links in this article above and the links in the linked articles. You will find lots of help. If you still have trouble, don't hesitate to get back to me.

      Delete

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