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Georgia senior citizens dive into swim lessons, facing fears

”I am getting too old to leave life not knowing things that I should’ve learned.”
Published: Jun. 8, 2022 at 1:34 PM EDT|Updated: Jun. 8, 2022 at 10:31 PM EDT
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ATLANTA, Ga. (CBS46) -- For some people, the water offers a safe space, while others face it with dread.”I am afraid of the water, terrified of the water,” said senior swimmer, Georgia Holt.

At 72 years young, Holt is learning to swim, and that fear is slowly fading away.

“I am getting too old to leave life not knowing things that I should’ve learned,” said Holt.

Holt’s first class was Monday, and she already feels more relaxed in the water.

“My daughter made me do it for one and I was very angry with her but after I got here the instructor was so wonderful. He taught me things about the water that I did not know,” said Holt. These types of classes are not rare. Instructors at Sharkie’s Swim and Scuba Academy said they teach a senior how to swim at least every other day.

“My favorite thing is getting to bring someone into the water,” said co-owner of Sharkie’s, Rhett Garrard. “When seniors come in here and they are terrified of the water and we get them swimming and pushing a 40-pound medicine ball under the water, they are going to be the lighthouse for other seniors and show them that they can learn to swim no matter what their age is. CRUSH THAT BUCKET LIST!” said Garrard.

People of all ages are welcome at Sharkie’s.

“We don’t want to hold anybody back from their joy,” said Garrard.

Classes here are designed to get people comfortable and confident in the water, including helping a 72-year-old woman dive face-first into a fear she has had for decades.

“I know that this is something I should’ve done a long time ago,” said Holt. “He even wants me to do water aerobics now so I am going to do water aerobics!”

Sharkie's Swim and Scuba Academy