Adaptations & Accessibility

Bearing Disability — Swimming Class

I’ve wanted to post about this for a while now, but time has gotten the better of me. You might be able to guess from the title that it has something to do with swimming.

For ages, I have wanted to learn to swim. Since a kid really, I got out of armbands in year six and I was chuffed! But then I moved to secondary school, and I hadn’t been swimming again.

That is until now. I’ve signed up to swimming class! I’ve been going since February and really love it. It’s great!

First few sessions.

I’ll be honest, I didn’t expect the lessons to move as quickly as they have been moving. For the first 20 minutes of the session—sessions last 30 minutes— I was on one of those floating boards and floating tubes. I expected to be there for a few sessions, but after 20 minutes, I was encouraged to try and swim without it… and I did, although unsteadily.

For the last 5 minutes, we went to the deep end, where I discovered that it is really easy to float and I am not that bad at treading water.

Woman sitting at the edge of a swimming pool

I return a week later and am encouraged to jump into the pool. I can’t do it. But I can slide in while sitting down on either side of the pool; I just can’t jump in and still can’t.

I spoke to several people about this, and the conclusion everyone came up with is that my CP gives me a block that prevents me from jumping into the pool. The fact that I feel unsteady on my feet when they’re on the ground prevents me from jumping because of the lack of trust I guess. So, yep, still, haven’t done that… I’ll ask my instructor if I can just slide in and get the pass mark for it that way.

Front vs Back Swimming

Before going swimming, I knew that I couldn’t swim on my front but wasn’t too bad on my back. Although, I did think I needed a floaty for my back still. So I was fine swimming on my back. However, I have found swimming on my front hard. I’m getting better at it (and am swallowing less water!)

When I first started to learn to swim, I could barely doggy paddle. Now I can swim half a length, very slowly, on my front. I can easily swim a length on my back.

I still do prefer my back, but I am wanting to learn to swim on my front, so I’m sticking with it. I’m getting there.

The Gradings

Each adult group has mixed grading. So stage 1, 2 & 3 are graded together. I think once I hit 100% I go to stage 4. Currently, I’m at 71%, so almost there! Hopefully, I can get to 100% before the 5th April as the following Tuesday is my last taught class and I’ll be moving back to Birmingham that week.

But it looks like it is going well, and I’m happy with it!

The instructor is good at including the whole class when we get new students. Last time, we had 2 new students, so like when I started, we were mostly at the shallow end. However, those of us that have been there longer practised what we needed to be graded on while he settled the newcomers and then he came to see how we improved.

Extra Swimming Classes

On Sundays, I go swimming with my friend’s daughter. She really wants me to learn how to swim and so when I tell her what I have been learning in class and how I got on, she shows me tricks and techniques that she uses to do that task.

For example, touching the floor of the pool. She told me to get my knees as high as possible and push myself down, don’t kick and only bend my knees as I get closer to the floor. It worked!

She’s a great kid—albeit a pain sometimes 😉

Before you go…

I hope you enjoyed this post. If you have, why not read some other posts. There are plenty on here: Plastic Straws and Lift Dependency just to name a few. And please do follow me on here, Facebook or Twitter.



Leave a Reply

3 responses to “Bearing Disability — Swimming Class”

  1. Well done, a very important and valuable skill to learn! Swimming is probably my favourite way to exercise. When we lived closer to a pool I would go two or three times a week, don’t have the time for this now, sadly.

    • I love it, always have just never had the opportunity to learn until now! hoping to move up to the next stage soon ^_^ just need to practise breathing on my front and kicking on my back

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.