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(Yahoo)   From the "how could this possibly be true"? File: American Red Cross says nearly half of all Americans and two-thirds of African Americans don't know how to swim. FFS people, even DOGS manage to figure this out without much trouble   ( news.yahoo.com) divider line
    More: Strange, American Red Cross, FFS, African-Americans, Red Cross, dogs, barriers to entry  
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1510 clicks; posted to Main » on 22 May 2014 at 12:27 PM (3 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-05-22 10:15:52 AM  
I don't remember learning to swim, so I assume I was born with the skill.
 
2014-05-22 10:19:12 AM  
I wonder how many Eskimos know how to swim?
 
2014-05-22 10:24:26 AM  
It's a life skill. If you don't teach your kids how to swim you are a bad parent.
 
2014-05-22 10:34:02 AM  

Fo Shiz: I wonder how many Eskimos know how to swim?


I would imagine most.   They are a Sea-faring people after all and if something happens to your Kayak, you can't exactly WALK to safety now can you.

I grew up swimming,  took my first dip in the ocean when 1 was 4 weeks old, and was a decent swimmer before I could walk and yet, even so we belonged to a pool when I was a kid and every year until I'd topped out with advanced life saving,my parent required me to take two weeks of red cross swim lessons every summer at the pool.
 
2014-05-22 11:29:32 AM  
"Everybody knows how to swim if they have to"     George Carlin
 
2014-05-22 12:21:10 PM  

Bob Falfa: "Everybody knows how to swim if they have to"     George Carlin


Bingo.

People who say they can't swim just don't want to swim.
 
2014-05-22 12:22:51 PM  
You don't really need to know how to swim, once you realize that fat floats.
 
2014-05-22 12:28:26 PM  

sigdiamond2000: Bob Falfa: "Everybody knows how to swim if they have to"     George Carlin

Bingo.

People who say they can't swim just don't want to swim.


Actaully had a friend who could not swim, or even float.  Mind you he was 6'2 and about 125lbs, but still, sank like a stone in water...
 
2014-05-22 12:29:28 PM  

toraque: You don't really need to know how to swim, once you realize that fat floats.


I'm unsinkable.
 
2014-05-22 12:30:27 PM  
Sports Illustrated wrote about this a few years ago.
TL;DR version: Institutional racism is a large factor.
 
2014-05-22 12:30:33 PM  
Aside from our mom making us take lessons until we passed the first couple of basic levels, we had to take swimming as freshmen in high school and part of that was basic safety stuff like treading water, survival float and whatnot.  We also had to do a test where we jumped into the water wearing jeans or pants, had to take em off and create our own floaty device.  Also did CPR in that class.  Treading water, floating and one of the simple strokes should be mandatory stuff.
 
2014-05-22 12:31:07 PM  

jaybeezey: toraque: You don't really need to know how to swim, once you realize that fat floats.

I'm unsinkable.


Are you Molly Brown?
 
2014-05-22 12:31:09 PM  
We had an in ground pool and a cottage on cape cod when I was a kid, not sure why all those other lazy Americans couldn't just take the time to learn to swim in their pool or at the ocean when they were summering like I did.
 
2014-05-22 12:31:38 PM  
joke-of-the-day.comView Full Size
 
2014-05-22 12:32:17 PM  
How can you tell whether or not an urban type person was swimming?
 
2014-05-22 12:33:03 PM  
It costs money to swim in most places, and lots of people don't live where there are natural bodies of water that you are allowed to swim in. Where's the farking mystery?
 
2014-05-22 12:33:59 PM  
I havent swam in a few years but it is like riding a bike, you dont forget how to do it.
 
2014-05-22 12:34:26 PM  
How could this not be true? You have to have access to a pool and a reason to learn.

How many states require the teaching of swimming skills to students? Pools are expensive to run, and they don't fit into Core Curriculum.
 
2014-05-22 12:35:02 PM  

Magorn: sigdiamond2000: Bob Falfa: "Everybody knows how to swim if they have to"     George Carlin

Bingo.

People who say they can't swim just don't want to swim.

Actaully had a friend who could not swim, or even float.  Mind you he was 6'2 and about 125lbs, but still, sank like a stone in water...


I think those body dimensions explain why he sank like a stone - he was mostly bone with little fat.
 
2014-05-22 12:35:04 PM  
most mammals need to be taught how to swim, that includes dolphins. most children that aren't taught to swim are raised with parents without the means to teach them. in some states swimming lessons are mandatory, I know in australia there is a move to get every child free lessons.

obviously, the problem is tied back to the socio-economic status of those who cannot swim and the mentality from a few of "durrr just buy a swimming pool and lessons hurrrr" crowds.
 
2014-05-22 12:38:55 PM  
Lol we can teach em the hard way like my ole man did to me. But I suppose that kind of thing is considered "less legal" these days. Really anyone should be able to swim. Maybe not perfect form olympic swimming, but enough to at least not drown. If exposed to swimming at a young age and the natural instinct of not drowning kicks in, they should be good for life. And that's all that really matters. Lol I've never considered swimming to be a legit sport either. It's not a sport, it something to keep from drowning lmao.
 
2014-05-22 12:39:39 PM  
 
Oak
2014-05-22 12:40:36 PM  
spirit-of-metal.comView Full Size


Learn to swim.
 
2014-05-22 12:42:17 PM  

R.A.Danny: It's a life skill. If you don't teach your kids how to swim you are a bad parent.


Best thing to do is the way i was taught: get tossed into the water and don't drown. To be fair, though it seems like something messed up and midieval, I think that tactic works fine. As a kid, before you become a lazy decrepit adult, your natural instincts are more in tune and you will pretty much trigger the survival instinct of not drowning. Sure may not be a way to learn olympic grade swimming, but swimming is really a thing to keep from drowning, not a legit sport.
 
2014-05-22 12:43:55 PM  
If you don't live on a coast, I guess there's a good chance you might not know how to swim. We have nice access to free beaches with plenty of ocean to go around. If you're inland, you'll have to find a pool, or perhaps a lake. But even lakes tend to be on private property. So if you don't have pool access, how will you learn?
 
2014-05-22 12:44:36 PM  

sigdiamond2000: Bob Falfa: "Everybody knows how to swim if they have to"     George Carlin

Bingo.

People who say they can't swim just don't want to swim.


I know right? More of a natural defense mechanism to keep from drowning than a skill or activity.
 
2014-05-22 12:45:28 PM  
There's an African-American professional swimmer who's working to increase those numbers, but damn if I can remember his name.  Anyone?  I read a great article ages ago where he talked about his passion for the issue.
 
2014-05-22 12:45:40 PM  
I don't know how to swim and never will. I am a landlubber.
 
2014-05-22 12:46:59 PM  
Dogs are also generally smarter than most people.
 
2014-05-22 12:47:11 PM  

NotoriousW.O.P: Sports Illustrated wrote about this a few years ago.
TL;DR version: Institutional racism is a large factor.


static.fjcdn.comView Full Size


Jokes aside, that's terrible.  Pools cost a lot of money to maintain, things often low in priority in lower income neighborhoods, leaving the rare private pool the only option.
 
2014-05-22 12:47:12 PM  

Dirty J1: R.A.Danny: It's a life skill. If you don't teach your kids how to swim you are a bad parent.

Best thing to do is the way i was taught: get tossed into the water and don't drown. To be fair, though it seems like something messed up and midieval, I think that tactic works fine. As a kid, before you become a lazy decrepit adult, your natural instincts are more in tune and you will pretty much trigger the survival instinct of not drowning. Sure may not be a way to learn olympic grade swimming, but swimming is really a thing to keep from drowning, not a legit sport.


In certain situations, it would be your advantage to know techniques that are energy efficient.  If you're going to be stuck for a while or have a long way to go to get to land.
 
2014-05-22 12:47:27 PM  

Once and Future Lurker: I don't remember learning to swim, so I assume I was born with the skill.


You kinda were.   Babies can sort of swim from birth, or at least they're born instinctually knowing some of the most important swimming skills (kind of like in the cover pic of Nirvana's "Nevermind" album), but they lose that instinct if the parents don't continuously work with them on it from birth and then they have to learn to swim all over again.
 
2014-05-22 12:48:16 PM  
When you live in a flyover state and spend all your time working, why bother?
 
2014-05-22 12:52:25 PM  
My father in law is a life-long boater (was commodore of his yacht club and everything), and yet he doesn't
really know how to swim (and, indeed, hasn't been in the water since JAWS).

There seems to be rather a tradition of maritime types not knowing how to swim, actually.
 
2014-05-22 12:52:33 PM  
"I never learned to swiiiim
Couldn't catch the rhythm of the stroke
Why should I hold my breath
Knowing that I might choke?"
 
2014-05-22 12:53:27 PM  
Try finding a public swimming pool these days. It's a sad course of events. Maybe if we cut taxes more one will appear.
 
2014-05-22 12:53:51 PM  

Oak: Learn to swim.


I like you.
 
2014-05-22 12:54:09 PM  
I hate to stereotype, but at least in my experience its a cultural thing among blacks. Its not always access to water. I grew up not exactly rich in Philly, and about 20 years ago when I was a little kid there were a ton of public city pools. White kids and black kids who grew up in the same or similar neighborhoods. Every white kid old knows how to swim, almost every black kid doesn't.

And water shoes. Almost never saw a white guy in one, but black guys break them out every time at the pool.
 
2014-05-22 12:54:11 PM  
I realize it's a stereotype, but I have a couple of good friends that are black....and neither one of them can swim and they've told me that many in their respective families can't either.  I know it's not a socio-economic thing, we went to the same high school (which has a pool), and we live in an area that has several man-made lakes with swimming areas.  So it's not like they haven't had the opportunity to try it, they just don't/can't/won't.....
 
2014-05-22 12:54:51 PM  
It's not just a socioeconomic thing, either.  Neither my husband nor my college boyfriend know how to swim.  They can doggy paddle like anyone, but they never had any sort of lessons to learn strokes or treading water.  As a native Minnesotan, I had to learn to swim early or simply drown before leaving adolescence.  They're both from fairly affluent backgrounds, my husband's had ice skating lessons for heavens' sake but not swimming lessons.  Boggles my mind, especially knowing how many kids die from drowning in this country every year.
 
2014-05-22 12:55:04 PM  

12349876: Dirty J1: R.A.Danny: It's a life skill. If you don't teach your kids how to swim you are a bad parent.

Best thing to do is the way i was taught: get tossed into the water and don't drown. To be fair, though it seems like something messed up and midieval, I think that tactic works fine. As a kid, before you become a lazy decrepit adult, your natural instincts are more in tune and you will pretty much trigger the survival instinct of not drowning. Sure may not be a way to learn olympic grade swimming, but swimming is really a thing to keep from drowning, not a legit sport.

In certain situations, it would be your advantage to know techniques that are energy efficient.  If you're going to be stuck for a while or have a long way to go to get to land.


This is true.  Walk a mile on land?  Any decrepit fat-ass can do that if needed.  Swim a mile?  You better be in shape for that be using an efficient swimming technique.  I've only done it once, and I trained for it ahead of time.
 
2014-05-22 12:55:06 PM  

Magorn: Actaully had a friend who could not swim, or even float. Mind you he was 6'2 and about 125lbs, but still, sank like a stone in water...


This clip cracks me up every time (the relevant bit is 50 seconds in): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dmyz_f8Sx14
 
2014-05-22 12:55:54 PM  

The Irresponsible Captain: Try finding a public swimming pool these days. It's a sad course of events. Maybe if we cut taxes more one will appear.


Philly used to have a ton of them, at least one in walking distance in almost every part of the city. Now they open a couple, most just sit and rot.
 
2014-05-22 12:55:57 PM  
Swimming is fun, everyone should learn how to swim.
 
2014-05-22 12:55:58 PM  

Cyberluddite: Once and Future Lurker: I don't remember learning to swim, so I assume I was born with the skill.

You kinda were.   Babies can sort of swim from birth, or at least they're born instinctually knowing some of the most important swimming skills (kind of like in the cover pic of Nirvana's "Nevermind" album), but they lose that instinct if the parents don't continuously work with them on it from birth and then they have to learn to swim all over again.


Learning as early as possible, and reinforcing the skill with use is definitely the way to go. Judging based on some people I have known fear becomes a larger and larger factor the longer you wait to learn.
 
2014-05-22 12:58:06 PM  

TheDirtyNacho: NotoriousW.O.P: Sports Illustrated wrote about this a few years ago.
TL;DR version: Institutional racism is a large factor.

[static.fjcdn.com image 600x450]

Jokes aside, that's terrible.  Pools cost a lot of money to maintain, things often low in priority in lower income neighborhoods, leaving the rare private pool the only option.



Man, I HATE when you all come into these threads with made up statistics and scenerios. You disn't learn that bullshiata from anywhere. EVERY hood I've ever lived in had a public swimming pool. You don't have to SWIM to get in the water and splash around, you know, like most kids do at pools.

/Come on, man
 
2014-05-22 12:58:06 PM  

Headso: We had an in ground pool and a cottage on cape cod when I was a kid, not sure why all those other lazy Americans couldn't just take the time to learn to swim in their pool or at the ocean when they were summering like I did.


Awesome!  I hate you so much.
 
2014-05-22 12:58:10 PM  
I grew up on the Chesapeake Bay near a Coast Guard station.  One of the biggest initiatives they had was to teach the watermen how to swim.  Most of the oyster and crab fisherman in the area didn't know how to swim.

That I thought was unbelievable.
 
2014-05-22 12:59:20 PM  

Dirty J1: R.A.Danny: It's a life skill. If you don't teach your kids how to swim you are a bad parent.

Best thing to do is the way i was taught: get tossed into the water and don't drown. To be fair, though it seems like something messed up and midieval, I think that tactic works fine. As a kid, before you become a lazy decrepit adult, your natural instincts are more in tune and you will pretty much trigger the survival instinct of not drowning. Sure may not be a way to learn olympic grade swimming, but swimming is really a thing to keep from drowning, not a legit sport.


My wife, who is an excellent swimmer btw,  is utterly, phobically terrified of any body of open water (pools she's fine with) precisely because some redneck asshat her mom was dating when she was three also thought that was a fine way to teach a kid how to swim.  DON'T , ever and I mean EVER do that to a kid.  Instea, to teach them how to swim, try TEACHING them

/little bitter because I love the ocean,  sailing, diving etc, it's like a second home to me, and I can't  ever share that with her because of that bastard
 
2014-05-22 01:00:12 PM  
My father, fed up with my slow process in the swimming department, simply kicked me into the deep end of the pool one afternoon and refused to come in after me. Terrified, I managed to learn almost as though it were instinctual. Was still a dick move on my dad's part, though.
 
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