The ability to hold yourself in the water is extremely important in the sport of water polo. If you cannot keep your head above water, you may drown. If you cannot hold your body partially out of the water, you will not be able to move efficiently in the water. The more control you have on your buoyancy, the more efficient you can be in the pool.
Use your legs and your hands to help hold your body out of the water. The back should be parallel to the water’s surface with the chest facing the bottom. Arms will be sculling water underneath you and legs and feet will be treading water (performing the egg beater) behind and underneath you. Eyes should be looking down towards a corner of the pool (see image).
Practice moving vertically in the water without changing the shape of your body. Use your four bases (2 legs, 2 arms) and your core to change your height in the water with the least amount of splashing as possible. Stay lower in the water (alligator style) then quickly shift to a higher position above the water.
Once you have mastered your vertical limits, test all horizontal angle movements in your lowest positioning. Slide left, right, forward, backward, and every angle in between. Then practice these movements at different vertical positioning.
Now you are beginning to teach your body the subtleties of the water. Allow the water to help you move and you will soon be on your way.