3 Tips for Swim Newbies like Me!
by: Jema Ng
When was the last time you did something for the first time? As for me, I love trying out new things: new restaurant, new destination, new activity, new workout, etc. I am always on the lookout for new things to get my feet wet; so when I learned that Pinoy Fitness teamed up with Coach Norman Triathlon University for a swim clinic for beginners… I thought to myself, I am so in baby!
Last Saturday, I arrived early in Army Gym and saw friendly faces wearing Pinoy Fitness shirts. When Jeff and Coach Norman showed up, they wasted no time distributing TYR swim caps and had us change into our swim wear.
Once we were all in the pool, coach divided the students into two groups: those who can comfortably swim for 50 meters, and those who can’t. Having no formal swimming lessons in the past, I joined the latter. Here are the things I’ve learned that morning:
1. Be one with the Water
Coach Norman wanted us to be confident with the water and to not treat the water as enemy. You can not swim if you fight with the water, the objective is to be one with the water, so he asked us to submerge ourselves, stay calm and breathe through the nose.
2. Take Cues from Your Buddy
Once all of us were accustomed with the water, we were asked to buddy up and did the drills alternately. Coach Norman would first explain and demo the drills before we did them ourselves. Coach laid down the drills in such a way wherein we only needed to focus on one part of our body per drill before moving on to the next.
As I guided my new found friend Marvin, I echoed Coach’s key points and at the same time, I observed his form. Was he doing it as how Coach taught it? I observed, observed, observed. By observing, I learned. When it was my turn to do the drill, I mirrored Marvin’s drills. Chin down, neck relaxed, hands on your “pockets”, body parallel on the floor, hand stretched out softly touching the ear, just how Coach Norman taught it, just how Marvin did it.
3. Practice DOES NOT make it perfect. PERFECT PRACTICE makes it perfect.
Two hours of practice went by and none of us ever complained. Time indeed flies pretty fast when you’re having fun! Coach Norman wrapped up the swim clinic with more tips on how to learn swimming. His key piece of advice: practice, practice, practice. And when we practice, make sure we practice the right way.
To say that I enjoyed the swim clinic is an understatement. I’m crossing my fingers there would be Leg 2 of this!
Here’s a short clip of what went on at the First Pinoy Fitness Swim Clinic: