What is the big deal with putting faces in water

Seriously, how important is putting your face down in the water?

Next time you watch someone push and glide off the wall underwater, all streamlined and sleek as they break out into an effortless front crawl and disappear off down the lane, remember, once upon a time, like everyone else, they had to discover the knack of taking a breath, holding it and putting their face down in the water.

Like every beginner they probably started while they still had both feet on the bottom most of the time.

Teachers who know about ‘Readiness’ make it all easier. They know there are no shortcuts.
They know that if the beginner isn’t ‘ready’ to try it, then success is uncertain.

  • They know that before their swimmers are ready to put their face in the water, they had to learn to get used to and to ‘put up with’ getting water on their head and their face.
  • They know that their pupils have to find out for themselves that taking and holding a big breath helps.

It’s something that can even be practiced at home, in the shower or bath.

Effective swimming teachers give their classes lots of opportunities to practice through games and other engaging activities with friends in the pool.

In fact as we all know, when you have a great teacher, you don’t even think of it as practice; it’s just part of the fun and games you look forward too every week.

Once a child gets to that stage, they are well on the way to exploring the wonders of FLOATING…flat and Horizontal…face down on their front and face up on their back- without support.

So, the answer to the question is… IT IS IMPORTANT…
if you want to do lots of other stuff later without getting anxious, distracted, or stressed.


As always – there is no need to hurry.  Let them take their time rather than take shortcuts…  

(Readiness at each foundation skill when learning to swim is at the heart of the resource Small Steps to Successful Swimming. Putting faces in the water is a featured step supported with practices and ideas to ensure success)