Swimming is One of the Greatest Constants in Life

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In life, we survive mentally by finding constants that keep us going. Swimming is one of the best ones out there.

The human mind can be pretty weird sometimes. As people, we go through waves of highs and lows in life, and our mind is in control of it.  Of course, certain events and situations will trigger it to get out of rhythm. However, our mind is in command of how we react to everything. So it doesn’t really help that it is so fragile. By fragile, I mean that it can constantly be rattled by outside factors. This is why once you find your constant in life, thoughts become easier to navigate, and you slowly become more in tune with yourself and how you feel. A constant is something good in your life that you know you can rely on to feel even a little better, despite everything else that may be going on. Swimming is one of the greatest constants you can find.

Swimming, along with every sport, has pros and cons. The pros will always weigh out the cons by a landslide. However, that does not mean it doesn’t still have a few. When you reach the high levels of competitive swimming, it turns into a lifestyle. However, although this may be seen as a con, I believe this is, in fact,  just a hidden pro. I link that to the fact that mental health benefits from mindless work.  

There’s nothing quite like swimming continually until you feel like your arms are going to fall off. Physically, it stinks. Mentally, it’s amazing. You feel accomplished. But what you also may feel is, a sense of happiness. That’s right.  Happy…that you feel exhausted. This is because when our body is taking part in mindless work, we are able to, in a way, shut our brains off for a little, and just let our thoughts be put on pause. By doing this, our mind is benefiting from the exercise while also not having to be suffocated by a million ideas, contemplations, worries, and theories. 

Swimming is proven to help both physical and mental health. Relieving anxiety, depression, and benefiting a person’s sleep patterns are all perks that come with this sport. Your body is almost forced to focus mostly on just its movements and breathing pattern. This is why swimming is seen scientifically as a moving meditation. Meanwhile, endorphins, the happy hormones, are being released while this is happening, bringing us to a good spot mentally. 

Personally, March, April and May were long months to get through. For obvious reasons, a lot of people were struggling to get through these months.  Yet, I felt pretty off, even though I was still working out and trying to keep busy. Recently, I have been able to swim daily again with some of my teammates and I have never felt better or happier. I truly believe that this feeling is because I have my constant in life back. Without even realizing it, I had gone months without the one thing my mind subconsciously used as a getaway. Yes, I do feel physically better about myself now. However, my mental health has soared the past few weeks. Swimming has brought me back to my healthy mental state that I have been missing. By just swimming an hour or so a day, this sport is right back to carrying me through the rest of my day on a high.

If you find yourself reading this and you are not a competitive swimmer, it would be a good idea to consider using swimming as a constant in your life. If you are a competitive swimmer, start looking at the sport as your “constant” instead of just the sport you do. It will change your perspective, and lead you to feeling better about swimming and yourself as a whole.

All commentaries are the opinion of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Swimming World Magazine nor its staff.