Controlling Panic in Open Water

Feelings of panic can creep up on the best of swimmers without warning, whether triggered by fears or from suddenly finding yourself in an unexpected situation, the panic in open water is very real.

Panic increases breathing rate which can lead to hyperventilation.

Hyperventilation can make you feel light headed , weak and short of breath – not good in water! It also reduces the amount of air in your lungs meaning you are less buoyant.

Follow these tips to help control panic in open water:

  • It is essential to take slow deep breaths which will make you more buoyant.
  • Roll onto your back, this allows you to breath and keeps your airway high.
  • Keep thinking & do methodical actions, for example repeat to your self ‘in-out-in-out’ as you swim, count your strokes or breath.
  • Follow the shortest and safest route to safety.

swimmer looking towards lake


Related Articles:

Open Water Swimming Safety

Open Water Swimming Courses