Our local pool is too deep for our non swimming 3 year old to stand up, so he usually wears arm bands so that he can float around messing about without us having to hold him all the time. A couple of weeks ago there were some adults at the pool, trying to learn to swim using various buoyancy aids. If you are trying to learn a stroke, buoyancy aids generally hinder rather than help. Arm bands particularly give a very unnatural buoyancy to the arms and upper body and really restrict movement.
As I’ve written before I suffer from ‘sinky’ legs which means that I naturally float vertically rather than horizontally. When swimming,this is not a problem as the leg movements for any stroke include elements that have a lifting effect, raising the legs towards the surface of the water. As with any movement in the water, the legs need to be loose and free for the uplift to work.
At the weekend I tried out some neoprene leg bands which you can wrap around your upper legs and velcro in place to give your legs a little bit of extra buoyancy. I feel that they may help some learners to learn to free their hips a little, as long as they are used for experimentation rather than being relied upon.
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