Know Your Style
Knowing your learning style can help you find the best way to learn a new skill. The four most common learning styles are: visual, auditory, kinesthetic or reading/writing.
Your learning style determines how you access information. Everyone learns best if they are able to experience a lesson in a way that makes sense to them. Knowing which type of learner you are can help your instructor develop a lesson plan that works best for you.
For example, imagine you are learning how to swim, which way would you learn best?
- Looking at diagrams or pictures of proper swim technique
- Listening to an instructor explain how to swim
- Reading about swimming technique
- Watching someone else swim and then trying it yourself
If number one describes you perfectly, then you might be a visual learner. If you would prefer to listen to someone explain the basics, you would be an auditory learner. For those that would prefer to read instructions or books on swimming, you might be a reading/writing learner. Lastly, students who prefer a hands-on experience are generally kinesthetic learners.
Visual learners digest material best by using their eyes. They absorb and retain information when it is presented in pictures, diagrams, or charts. Watching videos, or by looking at illustrations or handouts are also great tools for a visual learner. They remember information best when they can visualize it in their mind.
Swimming lesson suggestions for visual learners include:
- Using visual tools such as videos or illustrations to learn more about swimming
- Make lists or mind maps to digest main ideas and concepts learned during a swim practice
Auditory learners retain information best by listening. People who belong to this category prefer new information to be clearly explained to them. They work well in a classroom setting and learn quickly through guidance and stories. They also learn quickly by listening to lectures, participating in group discussions, podcasts, and songs.
Swimming lesson suggestions for auditory learners include:
- Discuss questions and answers with your swim instructor
- Watch lectures and videos on swim technique
Reading and writing learners prefer to process information from a book or pamphlet. Writing out their thoughts helps them untangle problems and reading up on a subject helps them to come to clear and concise conclusions. A library is a reading/writing learner’s idea of paradise.
Swimming lesson suggestions for reading/writing learners include:
- Write out main ideas or concepts after your swim lesson to review later
- Reword main ideas and principles to gain a deeper understanding
Kinesthetic learners excel faster in a hands-on environment. They use their senses to work on new skills and rely heavily on muscle memory. Members of this category often use demonstrations, simulations and case studies to help them improve. The term ‘practice makes perfect,’ is not lost on a kinesthetic learner!
Swimming lesson suggestions for kinesthetic learners include:
- Go through the motions under the supervision of a professional swim instructor.
- Play pool games to become more comfortable in the water
If you’re set on learning how to swim, understanding your learning style will help pinpoint what approach works best for you. Knowing your learning style also helps to find the perfect instructor to nurture your swimming education.