Do non-swimmers experience the 'flying dream'?

I dream that I can fly quite often; for me, it’s as if I can swim in the air (I have a very similar dream that I can breathe under water).

I’ve heard all kinds of psychological and metaphysical interpretations of the flying dream, none of which particularly convinced me, could it be that the flying dream is related to experiences of swimming? do non-swimmers have flying dreams?

Although this is a specific question, this thread will probably end up in IMHO, so be it.

I am a definite non-swimmer*, and yes, I have flying dreams. Now you have one data point.

*I will occasionally say that I’m “going swimming” for exercise, but this is really water aerobics and water walking. I get into a swimming pool, but I never actually swim, just do exercises in it.

I rarely swim, and I usually dream that I can fly in some form. I have experienced something where it seemed like I was swimming through the air, but it got really weird and I ended up getting sucked into the air intake of a jet.

Make of that as you will.

I’m a non-swimmer and when I have the flying dream, my body is vertical instead of horizontal like Superman. Aerodynamically unsound, but it seems to work.

I can’t swim either. But I don’t have the flying dream as typically described.

I have hovering dreams, where I’m upright, and have three inches of air under my feet that I can glide around on. Like a frictionless rollerskate, but with the power to move.

Interesting. I’m a swimmer, but I don’t have flying dreams. What I do get, though, are dreams of being able to jump about 100ft up, or dreams of falling from a great height. Oddly, I never wake up just before I’m about to crash. I just smack into the ground, get up, and do it again.

What do you suppose that means?


Well, going the other direction, I do swim, and when I have flying dreams it’s is not much like swimming through the air. I just kinda jump and go–like Superman.

I’m with Sublight here - swim quite regularly and cannot think of a flying dream I’ve ever head.

(a lot of trains going into tunnels carrying link sauages with bagels while firemen carrying hoses rush trough the doors of the trains smoking cigars, but no flying)

I’m a lucid dreamer, so I give myself flying dreams. At the time when I had them spontaneously, I wasn’t swimming. I only swim like once a year.
However, you might have a point there with the swimming, since as a swimmer your used to the feeling of (almost) weightlessness, and so your brain might incorporate that in a dream, and therefor cause to have a flying dream.
I think that simply the fact that you associate flying to swimming (as opposed to, say, driving) means that there’s such a connection made in your subconscious. Think of it as the free associations method for interpreting dreams.

I don’t swim, but I used to have flying dreams quite often. I always started flying involuntarily in the dreams and always had a long moment of panic. Once the panic left me, I switched from a vertical stance to a horizontal one and had some fun with the flying.

I recently had what GuanoLad called a hovering dream, but haven’t had a true flying dream in years.

Interesting, we seem to be finding that non-swimmers tend to fly upright.

I’m a non swimmer and I dream flying both vertically, and horisontally.

…that y’all have flying dreams as I do. The way I take off is by fixing my size 12 shoes so that instead of stepping down a flight of stairs I slide down them, and when I get to the bottom I am somehow airborne and I use wind currents to stay aloft.

Any conjecture as to why we dream we can fly? Is it something primitive in us that’s trying to awaken? I mean we can’t all be Superman fans, can we?



I have never had a dream where I was flying. Is that unusual?

I used to have lots of dreams in which I was flying as a child. There were two types: One where I was simply floating a few feet above the ground, not moving (always in the same spot in front of my parents house for some reason). The other where I sort of launched myself from, say, the top of a flight of stairs and floated to the bottom.

Used to love those dreams. They stopped when I was about 7 years old when the line between waking and dreaming got a bit blurred for me. I launched myself down a long cement ramp thinking I could fly and took all the skin off my face.

BTW, although I can and sometimes do swim, I’m not a regular swimmer.

I swim all the time and have never had a flying dream. at least one that I can remember. I think I’ve had a few about swimming itself but not flying.

I can’t swim, and I also never have flying dreams. I frequently have “falling to my death” dreams, but never flying.

I formerly worked as a lifeguard so I swam a good deal, but I have never once been able to fly in my dreams. Several times I have realized that I am dreaming so I think, “cool, now I can finally fly in my dreams.” Then right as I am about to try I wake up. I think my mind won’t allow me to fly because it know that flying is impossible. I guess I just need to relax more in my dreams.

I can swim, but I don’t very often, and I’ve never, ever dreamt I was flying, in either a vertical or horizontal position. Walking on terra firma, yes, and slogging through ankle deep muck, yes, but flying, nope.

When I first read the question, I was sure it would be about non-swimming species, not non-swimming individuals of our species, since theoretically most of us humans could swim if we wanted to. (Unlike other ape types.) Then I wondered how you’d collect your data. This way is much easier.

I swam competitively from about 7 to 17. Back then, I regularly had flying dreams where I would suddenly realize that swimming worked equally well in the air. Generally, I could not get much higher than about 100-150 ft “swimming.” Climbing higher was much like swimming up hill. I remember discussing this with other swim team friends, and many of them had the same dream.

I haven’t swum regularly for about ten years and rarely have that dream anymore. Whether that’s a sad commentary on growing old, or a sad commentary on my getting out of shape, I can’t say for sure.