T Nation

Strange Thing

I can’t float in water-not a bit. I’ve had numerous people tell me that’s garbage and have tried to help me float (relaxation and whatnot), but to no avail. My father can’t float either. Is this a genetic thing/body density issue, mental problem? I can swim fine although I wouldn’t classify myself as a strong swimmer, merely average. Does anyone else have this problem? Does anyone have an answer or comment?

DB

i sink too. Had aspirations of being a Pararescueman until i realized that puts me at a huge disadvantage in the water.

You have a high proportion of muscle and other dense tissue than fat and other floating tissue.

I’m huge and sink like a stone. Muscle sinks, fat floats. That’s why hydrostatic weighing was the gold standard for body fat composition (before the DEXA)

Ditto here. When I took dive classes, I had to PROVE to the instructor that I did not float. Of course, that became a problem during the dives when the folks renting the suits and gear gave me too much weight in too large of chunks. I had to have my BC onflated to keep from sinking to the bottom. But I can swim quite well (that’s more a question of hydrodynamics, not density). Low body fat, dense bones all make for negative bouyancy.

Fat floats, muscle sinks.

I bet your legs sink slightly faster than your upper body too (due to the air in your lungs).

Atleast, that is how it is with me.

Well, when they do water submersion body fat testing, the people with lower bodyfat weigh more in the water…in other words they sink more.

Do you have a low BF%?

Sorry, short hijack

Brider: Do a bouyancycheck before the dive. You should float at eyelevel with an empty BCD and your lungs full. Makes the dive more enjoyable :wink:

What amateurs were you diving with, they should know better than that!

End of hijack.

Wow. It’s nice to know that it’s not in my head. I wouldn’t say I have a low bf% - somewhere btwn 10-15%. I’ve never tested myself, other than pinching my little spare tire. Could also be bone density. The only thing I’ve ever broken is my nose (not including toes and fingers, which everyone breaks from time to time) even though I’ve taken some pretty good blows in sports, so I’ve got to believe I have pretty dense bones. It would be nice to be able to just hang out in the water and relax like most people.

DB

Try this. Take in a deep breath of air, then crouch into a ball while your in the water. Chances are, you’ll float. O.k then,let out as much air out of your lungs as you can. Now you’ll sink.

Interesting tip and one I will definitely try. It can come in handy if I’m treading water for my life, but it doesn’t exactly sound like a relaxing way to enjoy some water time on a beautiful day.

DB

I’ve never been able to float, even when I was a skinny teenager.

My face will basically stay above water, but my body goes almost vertical.

I now know I am not a freak… well as far as the floating thing goes

[quote]
Brider: Do a bouyancycheck before the dive. You should float at eyelevel with an empty BCD and your lungs full. Makes the dive more enjoyable :wink:

What amateurs were you diving with, they should know better than that!

[quote]

It was a class done through Lighthouse Dive and Ski in Washington. Long time ago. And there were no facilities to test in prior to going to the open water dive. They only asked my weight, and made no compensation for the fact that I was very lean. I made sure I got the weights in smaller increments after that first day so I could adjust as needed.