That Sinking Feeling


I feel like I’m Sinking!

Its a complaint I hear often and not a pleasant experience, especially if you are a long way from shore surrounded by 792 flailing arms and legs…

The truth is: Your body is lying to you!

Try this experiment at the pool:

Mushroom Float

  1.  Find a patch of water where you won’t get in anyone’s way. Go as deep as you feel confident.
  2. Take some deep, slow breaths then fill your lungs to 100%.
  3. Tuck up into a ball, hug your knees in close and bring your forehead toward your knees.
  4. Bubble out air as slowly as you can. Lungs at 90%, 80%, 70%, … etc as long as you can until you need more air.
  5. Try it a few times and notice what happens for you.

Chances are you could actually float quite easily. Did you feel calm throughout? You probably started to sink as your lungs emptied. How full were they when you started to travel down to the bottom of the pool?

Being comfortable in the water is an essential foundation for good swimming. Would you like to learn how to use your natural buoyancy to swim more easily?

Total Immersion runs swimming courses throughout Australia. Would you like to move beyond ‘that sinking feeling‘ to swim with confidence and grace?


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6 Responses to “That Sinking Feeling”

  1. Arthur Ince Says:

    I am 79 and I have been swimming in some of the Masters
    Games in Victoria during 2009 without any great success.
    I live in the Northern Eastern suburbs of Melbourne.
    Do you have a pool that could teach me the correct exercises
    for better buoyancy in my residental area.
    I do have your c.d. version of Total Immerson.

    Arthur Ince

  2. Dunstan Bertschinger Says:

    We replied to Arthur’s message by email.

    There is more information about our courses at
    You can use the ‘Contact Us’ button to send us a message or call us on 1800 007 505.

    We look forward to hearing from you.


  3. A.A. INCE Says:

    to Dunstan,
    Practise is difficult with my Heidelberg club,as they train
    in the latter part of the evening and I try not to drive in darkness.
    I swim at the local Ivanhoe Public Pool in the middle of the day two or three times aweek.
    I expect to be in the South Brisbane area on a short holiday between 25th. to the 28th. of May, and a week at a time share resort in Caloundra between the14th. and 21st. of May.
    I hope to take part in the Masters National Swim Meeting in Launceston (tas) between the 7th. and 10th. of April. (80-84 Group)
    From Arthur Ince

  4. Dunstan Bertschinger Says:

    It is great to hear from you Arthur and I wish you all the best for your swim meet in April and your holidays in QLD in May. Swim Well!


  5. frances bleiberg Says:

    i used to swim but now in the pool i sink what can i do. i have a neck which has very little movement What can i do?

  6. Dunstan Bertschinger Says:

    Thanks Christophe – let us know how you go!
    Frances I’d recommend you get some help from a registered physiotherapist to loosen off your neck and begin with some floating exercises in the pool. If you fill your lungs, hold your breath and relax I am 99% confident that you will be able to float. I have only ever met 2 people who could sink in the pool with full lungs…

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