Guest Post from An Apple Per Day – Get Your Kids in the Pool With Swim Lessons

Thank you to Kaitlin from An Apple Per Day for this guest post about teaching kids to swim. Summer will be here before you know it so if you are able to start teaching kids now (search locally for indoor pools), the kids will be ready for the resort swimming pool when summer rolls around!
My littlest just learned to swim this past summer… at only two years old! Not all children are as fearless as he is, so Kaitlin’s post is timely and helpful in gearing up for the swim months.


Get Your Kids in the Pool With Swim Lessons

Julie’s son Dillon at the Disneyland Hotel pool

There are a lot of things to take care of when you’re raising kids, but one thing that was high on my list was to make sure my kids knew how to swim. It was a skill that would ensure their safety, and allow them to enjoy the fun of being in the water.A lifetime skill. We want to take family vacations to the beach, and it is important that the kids know how to swim for those kinds of trips. But looking down the road, the kids will be around the water as they get invited to pool parties, when they want to go to the community pool with their friends, and many other occasions. After they grow up, they will go on vacations of their own where swimming will be involved. It just made good sense to get the kids involved with the water early. Here are some resources with great ideas about kids and swimming:

The safety factor. The Center For Disease Control reports that drowning is a serious issue for children, and formal swimming lessons can reduce the risk of drowning by as much as 88 percent. That statistic reinforces that it is imperative for my children to know how to swim. It doesn’t take long for a child to fall in a pool and get in serious trouble, so the swimming skill could easily save their life.

The fun of the water. When I was growing up, the pool was the source of so many of my fond memories, and I want my kids to enjoy the water as much as I did, and still do. I started early with getting them accustomed to the water. I introduced them to the pool with Mommy and Me classes when they were about 6 months old, and they all quickly learned the fun of splashing. They learned basic skills like kicking, while I held them and let them float on my arms. I would show them how to dip their head under water and blow bubbles, to start on proper breathing techniques.

Formal lessons. The accepted rule is that by age 3 or 4, a child will have developed sufficiently for formal swimming lessons. By that age, they can hold their head up, and follow what they are being taught. I considered teaching them myself, but though I’m a great mom and I love to swim – I’m not a swim instructor. I felt it was very important that the kids learn swimming skills correctly. Also, the kids sometimes tune out Mommy, and I didn’t want that happening for something this important. So I signed the kids up for basic lessons as soon as they were the proper age. Their lessons were in the fall, because they were back in school mode, and they would pay more attention than in the summer, when they just want to run and play.

Watch the kids learning. It is a joy to see my children when they are learning something new. With a well trained swim instructor, they quickly progressed with their swimming skills, and their confidence grew so fast I was amazed. Before I knew it the instructor had them going up and down the pool with all the basic swim strokes. He was also excellent about reinforcing safety in the pool area – and when he said “no running,” boy, did they pay attention.

I sit by the pool and watch my kids romp and play with their friends. They are comfortable in the water, and that makes me smile, knowing I have provided them a way to safely enjoy hours of fun in the pool.

kaitlin

Kaitlin Gardner started An Apple Per Day to explore her passion for a green living lifestyle, and healthy family living. She and her husband have just moved to rural Pennsylvania, where they enjoy exploring the countryside to discover interesting and out of the way places. She is also learning how to paint watercolors.


Thanks again Kaitlin! Even though the weather may be less than ideal to swim outside, look around your area to see if any gyms or indoor pools offer swimming lessons now. That way your kids will be in good practice before summertime. And with these great tips, they’ll be splish-splashin’ in no time!

signature5