Aquaphobia, or most commonly known as FEAR OF WATER, is experienced by a lot of people: young and old.
This is why we here at White Shark Swim School wants to reach out to as much PEOPLE as we could to share these information.
First, what is fear of water?
Is it only about being afraid of getting into the water?
Fear of water is more than being afraid of dipping your feet in the water, thinking some weird looking creature will grab us from down under.
It is more than our hearts pounding with thoughts of shark lurking around and ready to bite us.
Then WHAT IS IT REALLY?
FEAR OF WATER:
1. Fear of embarrassment:
A few of people developed their fear of water because they are afraid that people will notice that they do not know how to swim and will start to ridicule them.
Some of which prefer to stand alongside the pool or the shore and watch other people have fun just so they won’t be laugh at.
TIP: Think of this, every human being at first do not know how to swim and at some point looked funny. There’s nothing to feel embarrassed about. There’s always a first time for everyone.
2. Failing or being out of control:
Much like the fear of embarrassment, there are some people who have the courage to get in the water but would go only as far as their toes can reach because they do not want to be placed in a position where they would have to start kicking their feet but not submerging their head hence they would look like a dog who went for a swim for the first time.
TIP: It is better to swim like a dog than not do it at all!
3. Negative experience in water:
May it be from a childhood experience where your brother or uncle threw you into the pool or someone made you a promise that they won’t let go of your hands while you try to float around but they did.
There were those movies about sharks and alligators or some scary looking deep sea monster who can miraculously swim their way through shallow parts of the ocean or worst can get themselves into public pools!
TIP: It is all in the mind! Happy thoughts means happy results!
Now that we have made it clear what fear of water really is, it’s time to overcome it!
STEPS IN OVERCOMING FEAR OF WATER:
1. Getting into the water slowly and gently
There’s no need to rush. Take your time, the pool is not going anywhere. Our instructor would always recommend that you start by dipping your feet into the water. Get use to the temperature, make a splash here and there and when you are ready slowly get in the water.
Once your body is fully submerge it is now time to go for the head. Splash water into your face so that your facial skin will be familiar with the new territory.Breathe slowly and then when your body is accustomed to the environment, gently submerge head.
TIP: Submerge half of your face first before going for the whole thing that way you are able to adjust gently!
2. Practice relaxation and breathing techniques
This is where your mind plays a major role. After submerging your entire body and head into the water it’s time to close your eyes and focus on positive images like swimming with friendly dolphins or rainbows and unicorns. It could be any thought as long as it is positive and peaceful thoughts.
Once you have practiced closing your eyes while under the water it’s time to make bubbles! Slowly practice the breathing skills by deeply inhaling outside the water with your nose and breathing out under the water through your mouth.
TIP: This is a fun exercise, it’s like we’re 5 years old again so don’t forget to relax and seize the moment!
3. Start moving freely in the water
It is now time to get into business. Now that you can submerge your body and head into the water while knowing how to breathe under the water and feel relax, it is the perfect time to get those kicks going.
You can hold unto the side of the pool and lie down to your chest and start kicking and then after you can stretch out your arms and move it freely.
TIP: It is always good to pretend you know how to swim when doing your kicking in the water that way when you are executing the activity you are more confident.
4. Remember you are not alone and enjoy!
Always remember that you are not alone. If you take on a swimming class know and trust that your instructor will be there all the way. Should you decide to try this on your own make sure to have a relative or a friend on the look out for you.
TIP: The right support from the right people GOES a very long way!
We should all take fear of water seriously because it is real but it can surely be overcomed. With proper support and knowledge, no fear can overpower you!