How can I help others to overcome their fear of water?

July 11, 2018

The journey of overcoming my totally irrational but highly debilitating fear of water was one of the most difficult things I have ever done in my life, but it has also been one of the most rewarding and empowering achievements of my life. I want to help, inspire and encourage other people to do the same.

Whilst out running one day, I decided to offer my help to someone else in Wanaka, and to take the journey with them to tackle their swimming goals.

I am not an expert at all when it comes to swimming and I still have a long way to go with my own swimming, but I figured that one of the things that made my journey so hard was the feeling that I was so reliant on others to swim with me in the open water. The feeling of being alone during parts of the journey and not knowing where to start the whole process. What I have to offer someone else is support, organisation, motivation, reliable company for open water swims and to make the process a fun one for the two of us!

My aim was to start off by finding someone who had the determination and motivation that is required to overcome a fear. I have found that in the wonderful Andy Millard. You will hear all about Andy’s story in my next blog.

Together Andy and I are going to explore breathing, psychology, nutrition, water safety, gear choices, race preparation and race planning amongst other things. We are going to work together for approximately 6 months before taking on an open water swim race that we will complete side by side.

Whilst there is a lot of awareness about teaching children to learn to swim there are a huge number of adults who can’t. Living in New Zealand with all its lakes, rivers and ocean it is clear that being able to swim as an adult is a really important thing to be able to do, not only for your own safety but also for the safety of others. I hope that others will see that it is never too late to learn to swim or to tackle their fear of the water.