It's been a while, but now that the weather has gotten warmer again in Australia, my son has resumed his swimming classes. Since he is still at very beginner level, the classes are mainly focused on teaching him to go under water, float, and kicking.
The thing I found really interesting is the difference in swim coaching in China and now in Australia. As a boy growing up in China, I remember that the first stroke most people learnt was the breaststroke. Whilst in Australia, the first stroke most kids learn is freestyle. I've always wondered why that is, and which is the easier to learn.
When we started swimming classes for my son, I remeber asking the consultant, how long will it take for my son to be comfortable in the water and learn to at least tread water? I was surprised to find out that they think it will take up to a year for that to happen, and that treading water was for more advanced classes. Seriously?
Back in the old days when I first learnt to swim, I remember being thrown into the deep waters in the first few classes, and You either learned to swim or drowned. Since I didn’t want to drown, I learnt to tread water. After the initial shock of being thrown into the deep waters, the instructor guided us to learn how to relax and to tread water. After treading water, it was much easier to transition into learning to breaststroke. And it didn't take too long before I learnt to swim. But I guess I never learnt to swim well and fast. So I guess looking at the success of the Australian swimmers over the years, who am I to doubt their swim programs.
But for me, I just want my son to learn to survive in the water and learn to swim enough to be safe in the water. So lets see his progress in a few months time.
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