For 39 years, Melon Dash has taught afraid adults to swim, exclusively. The body of knowledge accrued in that time is significant; the new information is groundbreaking. Aquatics will be changed for good

How long does it take to learn to swim if you’re afraid? The quick answer is 2-3 weeks. But let’s make sure you know what you’re asking.

When you say, “Learn to Swim,” do you mean learn to do strokes or do you mean becoming comfortable and safe in deep water? If you mean learning strokes, you will never learn them if you don’t overcome your fear of water first. Not that no one has: but they have learned in shallow water and they cannot do the strokes in deep water.
No matter how many times the instructor says, “But the deep water works the same as the shallow!” the swimmer will never be convinced or healed. Therefore, another approach is required.

To learn strokes that are viable in deep water and that allow you to be happy there, you have to take 2-3 weeks to overcome your fear of water first. To become free to play and rest in deep water is learning to swim. For some people, it takes 1 week. For most, it takes 2. For many it takes 3. You are not “less than” if it takes 3. No one is afraid in water for a silly reason and it takes whatever time it takes to learn your way out of it. It is simple.

To be able to do strokes in deep water is to learn to be efficient once you‘ve learned to swim. Strokes are merely choreography. After fear is gone, it takes a week to learn a stroke like freestyle. Breaststroke and backstroke or breaststroke and butterfly can be learned in a 7-day week.

What do we mean by “a week?”
A week means a week dedicated to learning to swim, away from the distractions of home and work. It’s a 5 day/24 hour swim week. If you fit the lessons in between your job and home responsibilities and you take a good lesson once a week, it can take 14-21 weeks to learn to swim. Add another 10 weeks to learn freestyle. This assumes that each class meeting is 3 hours. Three hours allows for necessary conversation, video playback and feedback, review in the pool, learning time and practice time.

Learning to swim if you’re afraid in water is not about arms and legs. It’s about deep beliefs, learning what is true about the water, understanding how you can be yourself in the water, and learning to trust yourself. The internal process is individual, and no steps can be skipped. Give yourself the time you need.

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