Why can't you run underwater quickly?


A player swimming in the water
A player swimming in lava

swim is the horizontal movement in water or lava. Diving is vertical locomotion under water or lava. Drown is the damage you take underwater after a while, and the associated death.

Swimming and diving with the player

If the player walks into water or lava, he will sink. Movements are slowed down under water or lava. You can walk or dive on the bottom of the body of water or the lava lake. Emergence is done by pressing the. If you let go of it again, you sink down. For a quick dive you press the sneak button, like when flying in creative mode. You can dive in all directions by pressing and the direction control buttons at the same time.

To swim on the surface of the water or lava, you have to keep it pressed down, then you can swim with the directional control buttons. In normal swimming you make running movements (as in flying). However, if you start to sprint underwater, the player figure lies down horizontally and does Swimming movements. This allows you to move much faster in the water. In addition, you can swim horizontally through a 1-block hole (like flying with Elytres), which is not possible with slow swimming because you are moving upright. If a dolphin is 10 blocks or closer at the same time, you get the status effect "Dolphin's favor" for 5 seconds. This doubles the speed when swimming fast. Fast swimming is not possible in lava.

Swimming consumes energy and you get hungry.

  • Swimming up a waterfall

  • The player glides with elytres on the surface of the water

  • The player glides underwater with elytres.

Air supply [edit]

The air supply under water is in the Breathing air display with small air bubbles that appear above the hunger indicator. Underwater you lose an air bubble every 1.5 seconds. As soon as you get your head out of the water, the air gauge fills up again relatively quickly. So you can swim upwards even in very high waterfalls: You just have to keep your head out of the water to the side (not too far, otherwise you will fall into the depths). As soon as the breathing air display is exhausted, you lose 2 () Life points until you die.

Under water you can refill the air supply in bubble columns. However, they also cause an upward or downward movement:

  • Air that rises from magma blocks creates downforce, one is drawn to the bottom, where one takes damage to the magma blocks.
  • Air that rises from soul sand creates buoyancy, one is transported very quickly to the surface of the water and even shoots out of the water.

A short-term air bubble is obtained by filling an empty bucket with the water in front of you. If you immediately tip it out again to fill it up again (hold the right mouse button down continuously) and stand in front of a wall, 23 filling processes are enough to completely replenish the air supply.

A permanent air bubblein which one standing can breathe is generated with the following blocks:

A permanent air bubbleinto which one only horizontal can swim into it (sprint swim), is generated with the following blocks:

Blocks with air that cannot be used:

In lava if you have no air supply, you cannot drown in lava. Instead, you usually get burned very quickly. With fire protection you can swim in lava. Diving is also possible, but you hardly see anything. You can also swim up lava falls, whereby you cannot drown, but you can fall out of the jet.

  • A swimmer between soul sand and magma block air bubbles

  • Fence gates, doors and sugar cane can be used to build permanent air bubbles

Problems with swimming and diving

In the water

When swimming or diving in water, one moves at a lower speed and can only mine blocks more slowly than on land. Especially when diving, the view is restricted and the arm is shown shifted. There are various means to prevent these rather unpleasant side effects.

If you want to stay underwater for a certain amount of time, you can use potions to improve visibility or to prevent drowning.

There are also enchantments specifically designed for being underwater:

  • breathing: Increases breathing time underwater and delays the onset of suffocation damage
  • Water affinity: Increases the decomposition speed under water, it is now just as fast as on land.
  • Water strider: Increases swimming speed underwater. With a Potion of Swiftness, the speed of swimming on the ocean floor will continue to increase. Without boots enchanted with Water Strider, a Potion of Swiftness will increase your speed Not.
  • So-called: Makes the player fly in the direction of the trident when throwing the trident.

As long as a dolphin is 10 blocks or closer, you get the status effect all the time Favor of the dolphinas long as one makes swimming movements ("sprint swimming"). This doubles the speed.

For a longer period of time under water, it is advisable to set up an Aquisator, which has the status effect Ocean power confers. This gives you unlimited breathing air, a clear view and an increased rate of degradation under water.

In lava

Apart from the low speed, swimming and diving in lava do not have these problems. However, you have to protect yourself from being burned. This can be done by the following means:

Tools for overcoming larger bodies of water [edit]

In the beginning you will cross larger rivers or smaller oceans by swimming. However, if you often use certain routes that lead through rivers or oceans, you should consider a boat as an aid, because it allows you to cross a body of water more quickly. You can then expand the waters to make it easier to travel through. Maritime transport facilities are required for this. Walking on water is with enchantmentIce skaters possible for the boots. One irreversible way to remove some water is to use a sponge.

Lava, on the other hand, is only built over, cooled to obsidian with water, skimmed off with a bucket or replaced by other blocks, sand and gravel are good for this.

Swimming and diving in creatures

Most creatures can swim or even live in water. If they get inside, the undead sink to the bottom, they cannot drown. The other creatures try to get to the surface of the water. Once there, they swim, jumping up and down slightly. They can do this indefinitely. They only reach the bank by chance, they do not swim towards it in a targeted manner. If they are under water and do not reach the surface in time, they drown. There are some exceptions and special cases:

  • Undead creatures (zombie and skeleton variants) do not swim, but rather sink to the bottom in the water.
  • Desert zombie: If a desert zombie is under water for a long time, it stops drying out and it becomes a normal zombie.
  • Zombie: If a normal zombie is under water for a long time, it drowns and becomes drowned.
  • Drowned: Drowned people naturally spawn in water. They leave it at night and can use it to survive both underwater and outside.
  • Phantom: Phantoms can easily survive underwater and attack players underwater as well.
  • Chicken: The chicken flutters when swimming in addition to hopping. As a result, it will get further out of the water than other animals and will hit its head on a block above if there is one, causing damage and death (see chicken).
  • Iron golem: The iron golem does not swim, it is too heavy. But it doesn't drown either, but continues to run on the bottom of the water. It cannot be built underwater.
  • Snow Golem: The snow golem cannot swim and melts as soon as it comes into contact with water.
  • Ghast: The Ghast does not swim, it flies through lava and also through water. However, if he is forced underwater (e.g. in a cage), he too drowns.
  • Enderman: He doesn't swim, but teleports himself out of the water immediately. This also prevents him from drowning. However, if you prevent him from teleporting away by filling all cavities with blocks in a radius of 64 blocks in all directions, you can test that he will die if he touches water long enough (his feet are enough).
  • Lohe: The fire usually flies. However, she cannot appear underwater and drowns.
  • Bat: The bat flutters around under water as well as over water. As a result, it does not appear on purpose and drowns if it remains underwater for too long.
  • Guardian: Guardian and Great Guardian are aquatic animals that can stay underwater for an indefinite period of time. But they do not suffocate above water either, but rather hop around with the aim of getting back into the water.
  • Squid: Squid spawn randomly in small groups in all types of water, including artificially created ponds or water tanks. When on land, they suffocate.
  • Turtle: Turtles spawn on the beach and can easily dive and survive in the water.
  • Tropical fish: Fish also spawn randomly in small groups in oceans, salmon also in rivers. They suffocate on land.
  • Dolphin: Dolphins spawn in oceans. They have to take a breath at certain intervals or they will die. If they are on land too long, however, they also die.
  • Wither: If the wither is under water, it strives upwards, but it does not drown if it has to stay under water. It cannot be built in water.
  • Ender Dragon: If the Ender Dragon is created in the Upper World or in the Nether, it does not move and does not drown.

Only nether creatures other than the tan can also swim in lava. All other creatures must be pelted with the tossing potion of fire resistance or the lingering potion of fire resistance before they can safely come into contact with lava.

History [edit]

Version history of the Java Edition
Survival Test0.24
  • Survival mode added
  • You can swim, dive and drown when the air supply is exhausted
  • When swimming and diving, you move like you would when running
Full version 1.13
  • When you sprint while swimming, there is swimming animation
  • The breathing air display is no longer refilled immediately if you emerge from water
  • The longer you are under water, the better the view
  • You can swim through 1 × 1 holes while swimming
  • The underwater visibility is like it was before 18w08b
Versions of the Bedrock Edition
Alpha 0.1.0
  • You can swim and dive
  • When swimming and diving, you move like running
Full version 1.14.0
  • There is swimming animation when you sprint while swimming, but this is just an experimental feature
  • The swimming animation is no longer an experimental feature