As a swim coach, Lifeguard classes I always believe in encouraging my people with positive words. I do not like to use negative words as it will cause a negative learning environment especially towards the children. Research has shown that in a negative environment, the progress of learning is slow. When I am imparting a certain skill to the students, negative comments can be voiced out from the students after my demonstration. ‘So hard, so difficult, I cannot do it’ are the common comments which I will hear from them. I understand their concerns as the students did not feel confident about executing the techniques. It is a totally new skill to them and they do not want to come out from their comfort level. When I hear these negative comments, the first instinct is to reply them with positive words like “you can do it”. With the encouragement, I practised with them the techniques. During the initial phase, the progress is slow with students trying to escape from the practice or wrong moves are performed. However, after practicing a few rounds, I have observed from their reaction that their confidence level increasing with each practices performing better than before. I believed with the encouragement, it helps them in their self-confidence awareness which make them understand that it is always difficult during the beginning phase, however as long as you are prepared to work hard for it, you will definitely succeed. With this mindset, it definitely helps them mentally for their further development.
As for me how does swimming help me mentally? In the past, I do not have the ability to swim fifty metre front crawl. Now, I am competent of completing it without a hassle. The completion of the one lap in the pool has given me the self-confidence that I can complete it. In the past, I always have a metal block at the twenty-five metres mark. My mind will be toying with me asking me to stop and rest or it will be telling me that my limbs are tired and need a rest. However, with a strong desire to complete my first fifty metres, I managed to complete it. With these accomplishments, it has led me to complete hundreds of laps in the pool. The one lap completion has taught me that with a goal in mind, I am able to complete as long as I am mentally strong. Indeed, swimming also has helped me mentally to complete any barriers or obstacles I faced.