As a swim teacher and coach it always amazes me the courage that some of our new and young swimmers have when learning to swim. Teachers are continually asking the students to do things they have perhaps never done before and new things as we know, can be scary.
Courage is for me, feeling this fear, having doubts, trusting and doing it anyway. Swim teachers/coaches can be seen as agents of change. And change demands that swimmers are always trying new things. More often that not,trying something new means that failure is part of the deal. There’s a first time for everything. No one gets it right first time every time. But 2 things are for certain: Change is our only constant and our attitude to change makes a big difference.
When a swim teacher introduces a new drill or skill, the swimmers brain processes that new thought. The swimmer at this point can think “I can’t do this” or “I can do this”. The time and energy it takes to think or say either is the same.
Thoughts lead to words and words lead to actions. Therefore, if the process of learning commences with an “I can’t” the chances of failure on one’s first attempt at anything new, are high.
Teaching/coaching courage is our ability to teach swimmers how to adopt an “I can” attitude to every new piece of learning.