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Lessons go beyond swimming


Lessons go beyond swimming

AUGUST 8, 2014    LAST UPDATED: FRIDAY, AUGUST 8, 2014, 12:31 AM

“I’m tired…”

“No, you’re not,” said my patient Graydon Pool swim instructor Ryan Martin. “It’s all in your head.”

I tried to calm down, but my facial muscles were tense, and my treading arms were moving in frantic circles. As the water moved closer to my mouth, an irrational thought started to circle through my head.

I’m going to drown. I’m going to drown.

I’m not one to give up on things, but put me in a body of water over 6 feet and watch me freak out in five minutes.

I’m 24 years old, and I can’t really swim – but thanks to my recent adult swim lessons at Graydon Pool, at least I’m now on the right track.

So, how did I get to this point?

I took lessons at the YMCA as a kid, but I abruptly stopped, for unknown reasons, after mastering “airplane, chicken, soldier” floating. I’ve since mostly avoided swimming. Thanks to friends, I learned the basics of freestyle, but I never became skilled enough to truly enjoy swimming.

I know I’m not alone, but it often feels like it: In my experience, people who can’t swim generally are too embarrassed to liberally share that information, even if, like me, they want to swim.

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