I was reading an article in the news this morning; BBC News - Why don't black Americans swim? ...it is more to do with the discrepancies between ethnic groups and the ability to swim...but it begs to ask the question...can you swim? where did you learn and how old were you? ...or if you cant swim, why do you think that is? ................. I was taught at a very young age and could definitely already swim before starting school(aged 5). I cant remember being taught I think I must of been 2 or 3 years old, but I vaguely remember my grandfather taking me to the pool regularly. From about 7 right upto my mid teens I swam competitively for school and county. I'd also swim recreational, I was a keen kayaker and occasional surfer so would often go in the rivers/lakes/sea/ocean. I still swim today for recreation/fitness and find its one of those skills that opens up the world to new activities when on vacation. ..................... With regards to the article I posted, Im not sure if the inabilty to swim is solely to blame for the deaths, I also question the responisbility of swimming in the river, it does not matter how stong a swimmer you are unless you are able to read and understand the currents or gauge depths from the surface then you're going to find yourself in danger. As often is with these stories its the inexperienced rescuer who becomes the victim whilst the victim quite often survives.