How to build confidence in the water

Posted Ella Villas Articles

It’s a lovely Tuesday morning here in Southern California, and I just got done planning out some goals for the day, and for the next month.

I was thinking more about this idea of confidence that I discussed yesterday.

One thing I want to emphasize is that confidence never comes before action.

You can only build up your confidence through your actions.

I remember back when I competed in swimming. There were times when I let my nerves get the best of me before a race.

But there were other times where my nervousness nearly vanished!

This came down to focus. When I put my thoughts onto all the training I had done, and that I could not be more ready for this race, I would calm down.

When my thoughts went to all the things that could go wrong, I would start freaking out. (BTW, a little nervousness before a race is a positive thing, but “freaking out” most definitely is not!)

It’s only when you’ve done the work that you will build confidence.

When you get to a race, if you know you’ve been consistently swimming 3-4x and 10,000 yards or meters per week, and following the right drill sequences to maximize your stroke potential, you will get a sense of confidence.

If you wing it, or miss lots of swims, or try to cut corners and skip drills…a freak out may occur.

Or if you didn’t train in the open water and this race is your first time. Freak out city!

Confidence comes with the actions you take. Each time you jump in the water, you build a tiny bit of confidence.

Picture yourself walking up to your race, then standing and looking out over the water, with the mass of triathletes around you, jumping up and down and swinging their arms.

Does that sound nerve wracking to you?

If so, keep swimming! And keep practicing the things you know you need to practice.

And keep picture that pre-race scene until it becomes less and less stressful.

By the time you get to the race, you will be “laughing” at that water. 🙂

More soon!