First of all, parents ask, how soon should my child learn and what can they learn?
Infants before the age of 12 months can be taken in the water. Make is a fun experience, and keep the water nice and warm, 85 – 90 degrees. These little ones lose body heat up to four times faster than adults. A 20 minute water session is a good limit. Do not take infants under water, unless you are properly trained and an experienced instructor. There are special submersion methods used so that the baby does not ingest chlorinated water.
What about toddlers (13 – 24 months)?
For actual swimming, infants and toddlers can learn to do so, but it takes basically daily lessons for 9 months to develop the reliability of their swimming. It is very rare in today’s hectic schedules to have moms be able to commit to daily lessons for 9 months to meet that goal. I suggest if you have your own pool to enjoy the water on your own with these little ones—do jump from the side, sing songs and have fun with them yourself. I do offer a Parent Tot class in which you join your child in the water for a wonderful positive aquatic experience. We introduce your young ones to the wonder of water through songs, games, and basic skill building play.
Are Floaties okay to use?
These devices actually retard a child’s progress for proper swimming. Though parents use these with good intentions, the problem lies in that floaties are designed to keep the child vertical in the water, and a bent leg kick is then developed to navigate around the pool. When floaties are taken off, the child instinctively tries to kick the same way, and this kick forces her down under water and even greater fear sets in. Children who’ve not used floaties tend to learn about two to three times faster than the kids that used floaties.
Another tip: Keep the water temperature warm.
The focus should be on learning well, and shivering and blue lips make for less effective retention.
During lesson time make sure things are kept fun and playful.
Children’s attention spans are short, and water toys and skills work wonders for the lesson. In much of good teaching, it’s 75% enthusiasm and 25% educated skill. Finding a good personality match between child and teacher can catapult learning forward.
ALL children in lessons learn to swim eventually......just as all children learn to walk, some a little sooner, some a little later, but all do. Enjoy the process, enjoy the child’s achievements. A new arena of play is opening up for them and the whole family to enjoy. Bring water learning forth in trust and the rewards will last a lifetime.
What do we need for lessons?
Do we bring a lifejacket?
Does parent need to be in water?
Can I watch?
Can I leave?
Can I bring siblings?
Can we take pictures/video?
Is there a bathroom to change?
What happens if it rains?
What happens if it storms during your class time?
How do we know if lessons are cancelled?
Are the pools heated?
Is there a diving board?
PLEASE NO FOOD ON OR AROUND POOL DECK. THANK YOU!!
Julie's Swim School
Swimming lessons offered in Byron Center, Grandville and Holland, Michigan.