Learn to swim by taking time to become comfortable in the water, floating in a shallow area and controlling the pace of your breathing to avoid swallowing or inhaling water. Practice swimming techniques such as the breaststroke and the backstroke.
Floating is an integral part of learning to swim and helps to get over any fear of swimming. The human body is naturally buoyant in water. Try floating in an area of the pool that is shallow enough to stand in. An instructor or a friend can provide guidance and added safety. Learning to tread water lets you stay afloat in deeper areas with your head safely above water.
After you can float reliably, practice the various swimming strokes. Proper form is important to avoid struggling in the water. Choose from among the six types of basic swimming strokes: the freestyle stroke, the breaststroke, the backstroke, the butterfly stroke, the sidestroke and the elementary backstroke.
The breaststroke can be easier for a beginner because the head does not turn and dip beneath the water, causing breathing to be less impeded. While in a prone position, perform the breaststroke by simultaneously sweeping the arms outwards and then inwards to the chest. The legs kick outward briefly after the arms have swept.