Have you thought about enrolling your child in swimming lessons? You may wonder if he or she is old enough or just not quite ready yet.
It seems that everyone these days have an opinion about swimming lessons for younger children. Newborns, for example, are thought to have the unique ability to swim right from the womb. However, many parents will wait until a child is at least six months old, while some prefer four years old as the threshold. So, who’s right and is there truly a good time to learn to swim?
Swimming is a lifelong skill with many benefits. It is believed that the earlier a child is exposed to water, the less reservations they will have when they are older. Many believe that since a baby floats around in the mother’s stomach for over 9 months, they are naturally used to being in the water. However, it’s important to understand that as a parent, any decision and resulting risks are your personal responsibility.
The Child Will Let the Parent Know They’re Ready
As a parent, you already know your child. You know their likes, dislikes and always want to keep them safe. If your child loves bath time and shows no signs of intolerance for water, then you could consider early swimming lessons. Only you know when your child is ready and when he or she may not be.
What if Your Child Hates the Water?
If your child hates bath time and shows a real dislike for water, then you will probably be better to do some work before signing up for lessons. Once you feel your child is more comfortable with water, you might want to reintroduce the swimming pool when the water is very warm. If they still are not ready, don’t push them. Rather, show them how much fun the water can be.
Swimming Lessons and Their Purpose
The purpose of swimming lessons is to make the water fun for the child. They will learn core aquatic skills that will be important throughout their life. For instance, they will learn about balance, buoyancy and how to travel.
Parents who stick with each lesson will help their child learn to swim without any assistance from buoyancy aids by the time they are walking. Some swimming centers have classes exclusively aimed for babies. Their goal is to make the swimming process easy and fun. The highly structured lessons show objectives and progression.
Views have changed over the past few years. Many parents used to wait to put their child in swim lessons because they were advised against it. Now, officials can prove that newborns can learn to swim safely in a controlled environment. If you have not yet enrolled your child in swimming lessons near you, you shouldn’t worry. It is never too late to teach a child to swim. In fact, a child can learn at any age.
Swimming classes are divided into age groups. These classes only allow what is acceptable for that child’s level. Make sure your child is dressed appropriately. Boys shouldn’t have shorts on that are below the knees, as they will cause unnecessary drag in the water. Confidence jackets are great for the child who doesn’t like their face down in the water. Goggles also work well for keeping eyes safe from chlorine or any chemical exposure.
There is no right or wrong answer when it comes to your child’s time to start swimming. The goal is to ensure your child is having fun and learning some very valuable skills.