Anybody not know how to swim?

Old 07-21-2017, 12:36 PM
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Default Anybody not know how to swim?

I'd bet it's tough to find here on THT, but how does a grown adult not know how to swim? I just found out a pretty good friend of mine can't swim. He's white, pretty out-doorsy, and grew up very middle class. How does this happen?

In this case, he's a golfer, I'm talking pga caliber. Momma dropped him off at the course in the morning and picked him up after work every day growing up... but still. How does anybody grow up never knowing how to swim?
Old 07-21-2017, 12:43 PM
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I found out one of my best friends in college couldn't swim. Never had a clue.

We were at my other friend's grandparents house on the coast for their wedding and went to borrow his granddad's boat to hit the sandbar across the ICW (maybe 100 yards.)

We all hopped in and the one guy was sitting on the floor at the stern white as a ghost. Said he couldn't swim and was terrified of the water.

Had no idea. We are all Late 20s/early 30s
Old 07-21-2017, 12:56 PM
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I grew up next to a lake so was pretty much a guppy early on. But my wife says she grew up with a pool in her back yard but it's frightening to watch her swim and forget treading water.
Old 07-21-2017, 12:59 PM
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Some people just don't have it in them.
Old 07-21-2017, 01:34 PM
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I had a friend in college that couldn't swim, he was from backwoods Alabama and had never been around a body of water that was bigger than a creek, he was also overweight which I think is why he avoided ever taking his shirt off and avoided the lake/pool/gulf.

The swimming thing does not seem so weird to me as a guy I knew in college that could not throw a ball. Similar to above, he was a high caliber swimmer and that was all that he did growing up. He came to an intramural softball game our freshman year and seriously could not throw a ball. The first try was straight into the dirt 5 feet in front of him. I cannot fathom how somebody can make it through 18 years of life without learning how to throw. It baffles me that he never picked up a rock and tried to throw it, or played backyard baseball, or at school recess.
Old 07-21-2017, 01:40 PM
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I think if you're not taught young a fear of the water overtakes the want to learn how to swim. I was a youngster when I learned and swimming became second nature to me.
Old 07-21-2017, 01:41 PM
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I always wondered if it was the fear of swimming that made people not be able to swim.
It is not a strength thing. Just fear i guess.
Old 07-21-2017, 01:42 PM
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I can swim but not good. Learned late. City kid with no access to a pool or water til late teens
Old 07-21-2017, 01:45 PM
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We have a friend who grew up close to the shore and still cant swim. Comes on our boat often but never goes near the swim platform.

Many years ago, I had a crowd on the boat, anchored, one guy made a comment he can't swim and with that, someone bumped him in thinking he was kidding I quickly jumped in and calmed him down to climb out but yep- he couldn't swim. I wasn't to thrilled about that series of events that day.

I now ask everyone who comes on just so I have an idea of capability or if anyone wants a life vest.
Old 07-21-2017, 01:58 PM
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I can swim but struggle breathing only with my mouth.
Old 07-21-2017, 02:00 PM
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I don't know how old I was, maybe 4 or 5 but my dad did make me learn how to swim. We were at a quarry and my parents and friends were all drinking together. At that age I didn't understand about being drunk, I just thought my dad was acting mean like he did a lot. It took several years for me to realize he was an alcoholic and he was just a mean drunk.

I was playing around with some other kids in shallow water and my dad kept telling me to swim into the deeper water but I was afraid. I got out of the water and was sitting by my parents and I remember my dad picking me up and saying "you will have to learn how to swim now!" He threw me into the deep part of the quarry, I remember being terrified but I made it to the side of the quarry and held on to the rocks. Hand over hand along the quarry rock wall until I could touch bottom again.

Everyone in the group were clapping and saying great job so I got the nerve and jumped in myself and swam to the shallow water again. That's how I learned how to swim. I would have never done this to my child but I bet there are a lot of us from that generation that learned the same way.
Old 07-21-2017, 02:08 PM
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I got so drunk one time I forgot how to swim....luckily I also float.
Old 07-21-2017, 02:26 PM
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When I was at UGA I did my laundry at an apartment owned pool/laundry facility. It was a big hangout. I watched Herschel Walker try to learn how to swim at the pool. He sank like a brick. No matter how fast he swam he sank immediately.
Old 07-21-2017, 02:28 PM
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I grew up in Minnesota,camping,fishing etc.

Served 4 years in the navy on a carrier and have owned homes with pools,I swim like a rock.

My father tried the take me to the middle of the lake and throw me in to learn aspect which did not work well.

I can doggy paddle and swim under water, but not far because more so of the smoking aspect, it was all based on the fear and panic aspect but as I got older I learned to be able to control the panic aspect.Military aspect of mind over matter and stay calm in trying situations.

I spend a lot of time on boats and always wear a pfd,I was out by myself once in the gulf and had to clear a tangled prop shaft under the boat and tied a rope to myself and went under the boat and cleared the shaft and really did not feel panicked.

I think it is no different then those with a fear of heights,enclosed spaces or even spiders and snakes once that little bug is in ones brain it is just the way things are,it does not make anybody a better or worse person.

I have a friend that is a strong swimmer that you could not drag into a boat and another's wife,strong swimmer,who will get in and enjoy boating as long as she can see land outside of that forget it.
Old 07-21-2017, 02:40 PM
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I was 7 and some jackass pushed me into 8' of water cornell park chi town,and I taught myself after they pulled my ass out Now aint skeered,cured that ,and fear of heights,mind over matter.Loook when you've repo'D cars from cabrini green the nation's worst housing projects,scared aint an option survival is
Stay thirsty my friends.
Old 07-21-2017, 02:42 PM
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I worked on a ship, my boss didn't know how to swim. People would ask him how he could work on a ship and not know how to swim, his standard reply was, "ever met a pilot that knew how to fly?"
Old 07-21-2017, 04:22 PM
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I know people who can't swim. My mom was on the swim team in high school . When we were kids we would swim in any mud hole we could find. We've always had a boat and a pool so my family is in the fish family we swim every day. Love the water
Old 07-21-2017, 05:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Kenny Powers View Post
I just found out a pretty good friend of mine can't swim. He's white, pretty out-doorsy, and grew up very middle class. How does this happen?
I got called racist the other day because I asked my daughter if her friend, who is black, could swim. All but one of the adults I know that can't swim, or swim like a rock, are black guys, so it seemed like a logical question since he was coming out on the boat with us.

Apparently, I'm just an old out of touch racist...
Old 07-21-2017, 05:33 PM
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It's a real thing. I've taught a few adults to swim over the years.

High school state swimmer and swimming coach for years. If you're in the Carolinas and want to learn, PM me. I'd be happy to help.
Old 07-21-2017, 06:12 PM
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Up north (downeast Maine, Canada) where the water is too cold to swim in during the summer even, lots of folks never learn to swim.

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