You’ve heard it before a million times: swimming is one of the best ways to exercise. But for many adults, swimming is out of reach. A 2014 Time Magazine article estimated that half of the
The fact is that it’s never too late to learn to swim.
Every adult should learn how to swim at their earliest convenience. The reasons why are simple. The psychological, physical, and logistical benefits outweigh not knowing how to swim. You’ll feel safer in and around water, more confident, and open up a wide range of new fitness exercises you can’t do unless you know how to swim well. Triathletes also benefit from swim lessons (more on that below).
Not everyone grows up with easy access to water or swimming pools. If you weren’t exposed to a lot of water as a child or teen, and didn’t have a pool in school, more than likely, swimming wasn’t a big part of your life. It’s not abnormal to not know how to swim as an adult. In fact, the Time Magazine article discussed earlier suggested that many – if not most – adults overestimate how well they can swim.
So needing adult swimming lessons isn’t a bad thing at all. It’s important. There’s no reason to shy away from it. And if you’re afraid of the water, then it’s even more important for you to find a reputable gym with a pool that offers swim lessons to help you overcome your fears.
Sam Suarez, an American Red Cross certified swim instructor and Aquatics Director at CompleteBody Gym in Manhattan, has been teaching swimming for over 25 years. He believes there’s more to the benefits of swimming than just safety.
“First of all, it’s a life skill. It has to be learned. What happens is that some people never learn to swim. So when they get to be adults, they start doing things like triathlons and they need to swim,” Sam explained. “Or, they go on vacation and they don’t get in the pool. They have a fear of drowning.”
But learning to swim goes beyond that. “Swimming is great body conditioning and body sculpting. And the water’s very healing – that’s number one.”
Sam added that when you learn to swim, you learn to breathe. All the muscles are being utilized – the oxygen is going through the muscles. For people who have injuries – knees, hip replacements, etc – they tend to go to the water. When athletes get injured, they tend to go to the water, too.
That means that if people want or need to exercise in the water, they need to learn to swim.
Triathletes and Adult Swim Lessons
A lot of triathletes, once they figure out the breathing in swimming, their biking and running performance excels.
More adults than ever before are turning toward swimming. According to Sam, what many people don’t realize is that swimming is a winter sport. Many runners and cyclists turn to it. Swimming is the weakest link to the triathalon.
Typically, runners and cyclists who turn to triathlons need to improve their swim skills in order to really compete. This is where adult swimming lessons can help. With lessons, breathing skills improve as well as the ability to move through the water quickly.
Three Major Benefits of Adult Swimming Class Levels
There are three levels of adult swimmers: beginner, intermediate, and advanced. At all levels, you can experience major benefits of lessons.
The three biggest benefits are:
- Increased confidence. When you know how to swim well, you benefit from increased confidence in and around water. Knowing how to swim is more than just keeping yourself from drowning. You need to be able to swim confidently, in all depths of water.
- Ability to help your children swim. Children typically learn to swim from their parents. If you have children, you really should learn to swim if only for their benefit. Even if you are not an incredible swimmer or don’t know all of the strokes, you’ll at least be able to swim with your children and be with them in the water. If you don’t have young children but have nieces, nephews, or grandchildren, this still applies to you.
- Wider range of exercises. If you get injured and can no longer run or bike, swimming may still be an option for you. That’s another major side benefit of adult swimming lessons. Even if you haven’t injured yourself, you’ll enjoy many more types of activities if you know how to swim. You can also learn to dive and take your aquatic experience to a new level.
What Is Taught in Adult Swimming Lessons
Water Safety Skills
Taught in a relaxed, fun way. Again, swimming is more than just not drowning. You’ll learn how to stay safe in the water, avoid injury or death, conserve energy, and more. If you’re afraid of swimming in deep water or have concerns about drowning, a good swim instructor may be able to help you overcome that.
Floating and Treading Techniques
You’ll learn how to float and tread water early on in any adult swimming lessons course. In order to float, you must learn how to be calm and relaxed in the water, so some of your lessons will help you achieve that.
Depending on your specific swim class, instructor, and purpose, your lessons will likely involve breathing techniques.
Basic-to-Advanced Swim Strokes
The strokes taught and practiced in lessons depends a great deal on your swim level. Beginners may learn the breastroke toward the end of the course. In the beginning, the focus will be on water safety and the use of flotation devices, for example. Intermediate and Advanced swim lessons will go into more specialized swim strokes or
CompleteBody Gym Offers Adult Swimming Lessons
Pool at CompleteBody Midtown East (57th Street)
If you are interested in swim lessons at CompleteBody, call 212-777-7703 and Joann Pericone. Adult swimming lessons are offered at Midtown East (57th Street). You do not need to be a member to take swim lessons; you can sign up for the lessons separately. CompleteBody also manages gyms and pools in several residential buildings and offers lessons through them.