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How do I work on balance in the water?

Swimming on the back is an excellent way to work on balance. It enables athletes to find their optimal body position in the water, while still being able to breath. This often alleviates a lot of anxiety for first time swimmers. Finding and fine tuning this position is a less daunting way of perfecting balancing before an athlete must submerge their head underwater. To perform this activity, have an athlete lay on their back, they can do this with fins if they do not have a strong kick. With the arms at their side, have an athlete kick on their back, really pushing through their lungs to elevate their sinking hips. They should feel a point of lean where their hips rise to the surface. This activity is similar to a trust game where an individual is advised to lean back and the rest of the group is entrusted to catch the falling participant. In back swimming, the athlete needs to trust the water and really lean back into it in order to maximize the buoyancy of the lungs to counterbalance the weight of the hips. Once swimming on the back is practiced a few times, have the athlete rotate their body slightly to the left and practice finding the balancing position while not fully on their side but rotated slightly off of their flight back. Kick on one side for the length of the pool and then return, kicking on the other side. Finally the last exercise in working on balance is to extend the bottom arm overhead. Have the athlete think about pushing through their arm pit to really lean on the lungs. Practice one side and then the other.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.