Sunday, August 1, 2010

Parlez Vous Swimming?

I went swimming again today....and...I think I got a little bit better.  YEA ME!

I don't think I shared this before, but I didn't learn to swim until college.  I mean, sure, I could dog paddle, I could swim under water, I could splash around all summer long...but my first swim lesson (that I remember) was when I was five years old.  It consisted of my brother and cousin (both four years older) taking me to the deep end of the pool and telling me to swim or drown.  Obviously I made it out alive, and not overly traumatized....but I wouldn't say that lesson was terribly successful!

In college I needed a "PE" credit and I figured it was probably time for me to learn to do more than tread water, so I took Swimming 101.  I do remember a few things from that class, but I believe that particular sport is more like speaking a foreign language than "riding a bike" in that if you don't practice, you can quickly forget how.  Let's just say it's been more than just a few years since college....and since that class,  I haven't "spoken" more than one stroke....until the other day.  (And, in keeping with the analogy, what I did in the pool the other day was like saying, "Can me flopping your mother's fish dog in the soup fan, yes?"   ...if you know what I mean.  I may have had the components "right" but I didn't put them together in a meaningful way.)

When I learned to speak French, one of my professors told me it was a process.  First you translate from English to French.  You have to think about every word, the sentence structure, pronunciation and so forth.  She said eventually, with enough practice, you begin to simply speak, and understand, the language without the added step of translation.

Flipper and Me!! :D
I just spent the last hour and a half watching youtube videos on learning to swim freestyle (thanks to the suggestion of my swimming buddy-I'll call her Flipper from now on).  Tomorrow...I'm going back to the pool again for some "translation practice".  I'm not going to focus on putting it all together, but instead I'm going to break it down into chunks.  Just like when learning a new language you don't start out conjugating verbs, you learn some simple nouns first.....

((I'm also planning to go to Hard Body's Extreme Abs class before hitting the pool.  Later tomorrow night is the first NOBO group run!!!  I have to say, out of the three activities planned, I'm most excited about the NOBO run.))

Thanks for stopping, come again soon!


  1. I think that swimming comes natural even if we need a little help to improve the speed. Great picture, I like it!

  2. I like the comparison of learning to swim to learning a new step at a time! You're doing so great, Dana! Yay, YOU!!!

  3. youtube videos are a great idea, I'm heading to check some out myself

  4. Ditto on the swimming.I had a similar background. Instead of college I learned to swim at 48. I joined a masters swim club and the coach basically taught me how to swim. 2 years later I swim around a mile a couple times a week. Still not ready for open water, but laps in a pool I can do. Keep up the swimming it is a great exercise. There is also triathlons.


Don't hold back, tell it like it is....