Note: this post was edited 3/2012 to place a missing video (the first one below).
If you want to teach your child to tie her shoes, do you say, "Tie your shoes!"
No. She'd be lost. Where to start, she'd be thinking.
If you want to teach people to prevent panic, do you say, "Don't panic!"?
No, but people do. It doesn't work. It's been tried. And how many people have drowned since then?
If you want to prevent most of Laurie Batter's reported 1592 U.S. drownings of Summer, 2011, you must teach people:
1) how to prevent panic, and 2) how the water works. In that order. When they know these, they know how to swim. After that, you can responsibly teach them strokes.
How do I know? I know from the empiricle research of hearing the stories and working with 4000 adults who were this year's drowning candidates. They did not drown, however: they learned to swim in the truest sense of the word, a word that holds more confusion than the public knows.
These people came to learn to overcome their fear because they knew they'd "lose it" if they found themselves in deep water by surprise... and chances were good that would end their lives.
2012 is the 100-year anniversary, more or less, of the beginning of formalized swimming instruction in the U.S. Other countries learned our system and are now in the same boat we're in.
In 2012, there will be a conference to change the course of swimming instruction to one that works for all, rather than for half: those who are already comfortable in water. That means, a new age of teaching swimming instructors to teach panic-prevention is due. The gears are in motion to make it happen.
June 1-4, 2012, bring yourself and your staff and journalists to the End of Drowning World Conference for Swimming and SCUBA Diving Inst... Learn why and how to teach people the two absolutely-essential-to-safety-things no other swimming instruction agency or school teaches, which are the obvious answer to the vast majority of drowning prevention. Be transformed for good.
Chances are, you'll leave with your age-old teaching questions answered.
A question for you.
Here are 2 of 3 students learning to become comfortable with their faces in water and floating on Friday. This was a Beginning class at 21st Century Swimming Lessons in August in Sarasota, FL.
Here they are on the following Tuesday.
HOW COULD THIS HAPPEN?
Could you do teach that?
It happened because these people learned how to prevent panic.
The 2 mm vests are for warmth.
EVERY SINGLE CITIZEN can be taught this, bar none (unless they're particularly disabled). This ease needs to be passed on to every human being in the world, by every swimming instruction organization, bar none. Safety first; strokes second.
Come see it in June!