From Frogs to Breaststrokes.

Dear Blog,

So I was at the gym earlier today, doing ma thing (I really can’t rock the sass) and I usually finish off with a nice soak in the swimming pool. It’s always nice to spend 20 minutes just chilling in the Jacuzzi, lost in my own world.

I quite like the swimming pool. You feel light as a feather and it always gives me a fresh boost of motivation to complete lap after lap. Though, after my first session, I noticed something about my fellow swimmers. Every single one of them was doing a Breaststroke. I mean every single one. Come to think about it, both my mum and partner swim via the Breaststroke (or ‘The Frog’ as I like to call it). I can see why it’s favoured. It’s a peaceful technique, doesn’t cause too much splashing and works all your key muscles. I was never taught the way of the frog. I learnt to swim at school and we were just taught how to Front Crawl. Not sure why. I guess you could get more laps out of a session as it is a faster stroke? God knows.

As a child, swimming wasn’t my favourite sport. I have had a fear of water/drowning since before I even knew what drowning was. When my Mum used to wash my hair with the infamous bath jug, I would jump up and panic if any drop of water hit my face. Don’t get me wrong,  I enjoyed going to the pool with my family but that was mainly for the watersides and floats. In a rare moment of fun, my Dad and I would re-enact famous movie scenes. Titanic was one of our favourites (I was always Rose on that damn door). But besides that, there wasn’t much swimming. I have been pulled out of pools countless times and even last month, I found myself struggling to resurface from a 2.5 meter deep pool at the end of a slide. It genuinely terrifies me. Because of this fear, my Front Crawl has never looked right. Typically, you are suppose to submerge your head and coming up for air every other stroke, makes you more streamline.  I can’t put my head in the water without panicking so I end up looking like a dog fetching a stick regardless.

So it was years before I ever went proper swimming again and all I can really do is some form of doggy paddle or a very messy Front Crawl. I didn’t want to look stupid in front of all these gym goers so I’ve been trying to learn how to Breaststroke. I put a huge amount of emphasis on ‘trying’. Learning to swim as an adult is hard! Nothing seems to go where you want it to. It’s simple. Your arms go out like your parting the waves and your legs look like a frogs legs do. You do them at the same time and boom! You swim somehow…. Nope. After trying to swim like this for several weeks, my Partner joined me and informed me that there has to be a slight delay with my motions. My arms should part as my legs raise for another kick. So I’d been using all my effort to blend in and conform just to be told I’d spend the last 4 weeks swimming like a deformed toad.

I think I am getting the hang of it now. I can swim about half a lap before losing my confidence. That’s much further than I got with my toad technique. I’m hoping I can keep on improving, if not, I might just hide away in the steam room. I don’t think I can look like a tool in there, I hope not, at least.

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