Helping your child to develop confidence in the water
It’s always great fun to get outdoors in the summertime, when the weather is hot and you can visit the beach with your family and cool off. Armed with your latest swimwear outfit, sunscreen, hat and beach umbrella… plus your children, you can look forward to relaxing while your kids are swimming at the water’s edge.
However, if your baby hasn’t had baby swim lessons, or your child hasn’t learnt water safety skills or attended a swim school, jumping into the water when they’ve never been to swimming classes, can be fraught with danger.
1 WATER SAFETY
How to build water confidence in your child
Water safely is paramount if you own a swimming pool or if you visit other people’s pools or public swimming pools or aquatic centres. You need to arm yourself with a water safety plan, so you are well aware of the dangers around children swimming.
Adult supervision is very important as swimming pools can be extremely dangerous for adults and especially children. All children, from a very early age should participate in baby swim or in a learn-to-swim swimming program so they feel water confident when swimming.
However, even if you child or toddler participates in regular swimming lessons, guardians or parents need to be very alert and vigilant about water safety when children are swimming in the backyard pool.
Parents should never leave a child unattended in a swimming pool, bath or dam.
Swimming pools are dangerous places for children and toddlers. There is always a possibility for children to drown in backyard pools if unsupervised.
All parents or guardians who have swimming pools should learn CPR skills to safeguard their children and others when they are swimming at the beach or in a swimming pool.
Most swimming pool drownings of children generally happen when there are no adults in supervision. Even if children have had swimming lessons an adult should always be present during swimming activities.
When children learn water safety skills at their local aquatic centre, they will not only become water confident but will develop a lifelong skill that they can enjoy They can encourage others to participate in swimming lessons also.
Child Safety Around Water
Even if children are attending regular swimming lessons, parents still need to be vigilant about water safety at home. Children need to be continuously and actively supervised by a capable supervisor when in or near water. Never leave children unsupervised, especially in baths. The presence of other children or the use of flotation devices should not take the place of active adult supervision. For children under the age of five, this means being within arm’s reach at all times.
Plan and Prepare for Water Safety…
- Install secure fencing around swimming pools
- Install CPR and a Resuscitation Sign in pool area
- Parents need to upgrade their swimming skills
- Never swim alone in a pool or at the beach
- Vigilantly supervise children when they are swimming
- Never be distracted by a phone call at a pool
- Learn CPR skills as it may save a life
RULES TO REMEMBER FOR WATER SAFETY
1 LEARN HOW TO SWIM
2 LEARN CPR
3 NEVER LEAVE A CHILD UNSUPERVISED AROUND WATER, ESPECIALLY AT POOLS AND BATHS
4 SHUT THE GATE… SECURE POOL FENCING IS VITAL
5 DON’T SWIM ALONE.
2 SWIMMING LESSONS WILL SAVE LIVES
It’s essential that kids have swimming lessons
Swimming pools are a lovely addition to any home. However, if you have a swimming pool and you are not a proficient swimmer, you need to take adult swimming classes… and also enrol your children into swimming classes.
Adult swimming lessons as well as swimming lessons for kids are generally available at your local aquatic centre.
Make sure your young baby has baby swimming lessons also and that everyone is aware of the water safety rules. Baby swim classes are widely available during the day and are a must for saving young children’s lives when near water.
Swim centres offer learn-to-swim lessons to the community to assist in getting babies into the pool early. They have programs that can develop skills that could save their lives. Some swim schools offer free lessons for babies 3 to 6 months old, and structured lessons for all age groups, including adults, allowing them to progress into competitive or fitness squads. Some schools also offer free CPR training to parents.
So, the sooner you enrol your baby or toddler into a swim school program at the local aquatic centre, the earlier they will learn to swim and reap the health benefit of swimming classes.
It’s an easy skill to learn and can save a life!
Not only do children need to start swimming lessons early, but they also need to continue lessons throughout their primary years. It might get challenging, but swimming is a life or death skill, especially in a beach-oriented lifestyle. Children should not only learn to swim but should become strong swimmers
3 SWIMMING IS A LIFE SKILL
Swimming is a life skill… once learnt you have it for life.
Every child needs to develop swimming confidence
Swimming strengthens a baby or toddler’s self-esteem when they learn to swim early in life as it helps them overcome the fear of water. When children participate in regular swimming lessons, they gain confidence quickly and are more willing to take on more difficult swimming challenges. As they watch other people swimming, learning new swimming techniques in the same class, they are more likely to have a go also.
When children become involved in an aquatic centre swimming program, having regular swimming lessons they learn to swim far more quickly, and their swimming confidence grows quite rapidly.
Therefore, the earlier children have swimming lessons the better. They will not only develop new physical abilities, but it will greatly improve their cognitive abilities, mood, health and wellbeing.
Swimming is an important life skill, so the earlier you book your child into a swim school, where they learn freestyle swimming, backstroke or butterfly swimming techniques the better. They could then become part of a swimming team, helping others to learn to swim also.
4 HEALTH BENEFITS OF SWIMMING
SWIMMING HAS MANY HEALTH BENEFITS
SWIMMING IS A GREAT WAY FOR YOUR CHILD TO STAY HEALTHY
The benefit of a swimming exercise program with a swim kids club is that it a great way for children to have lots of fun, meet new friends while swimming and at the same time strengthening their muscles.
Developing and building friendships at a local aquatic centre keeps children socially engaged and strengthens their health and wellbeing. Being socially engaged increases their self esteem as well helping them feel important.
When children join a swimming team at a swim club they can participate in a competitive swimming program or develop more skilled swimming techniques at different swimming levels to improve their swimming techniques.
SWIMMING IS A GOOD WORKOUT EXERCISE …. TO STAY HEALTHY
Swimming is one of the best ways to keep fit, not only for toddlers and children but for adults as well. Those who participate in swimming exercise gain so many health benefits as it helps keep their muscles strong and flexible, increases lung capacity and keeps the heart strong and healthy.
When wearing the correct swimwear, swim workouts while swimming in the ocean, doing open water swimming sports at your local aquatic centre, using the lap pool, applying different swimming techniques are all excellent ways to keep the body fit and healthy.
Some public swimming pools offer different lap pool lanes for varying swimming proficiency levels to practise and improve freestyle swimming skills.
Swimming classes are an excellent way for kids to keep fit and healthy as it improves the heart and develops lung capacity. Many kids who are overweight try swimming for weight loss, as it helps stabilize their weight while improving their health. The more kids are involved in a swim school program, the fitter they will be.
Older people often engage in low impact swim workouts, exercising the joints while keeping them moving freely. Many doctors recommend low impact swimming classes for a quicker recovery to many sport injuries, especially knee joints.
5 SWIMMING IS A GREAT ACTIVITY FOR BOTH FUN AND EXERCISE
Beaches are always great places to visit or camp nearby when on holidays and swimming is such a fun thing to do while at the beach. When children participate in a swimming program, swimming lessons or just swimming in the ocean, children will always enjoy themselves more with their friends and family.
Kids building sandcastles on the beach, jumping waves, practising their surfing and swimming skills, become fitter, happier and healthier children. They will be exercising, making new friends, while having lots of fun… and creating memories.
Swimming is a wonderful sport that can fit into most lifestyles and can be used to keep fit and active at any age. Swimming can also be included in many other sports such as water polo, surfing, lifesaving, scuba-diving and triathlon.
In Australia, swimming is not only a sport, it’s a way of life… it’s in our DNA.
Australians spend a great deal of time around water. Learning to swim is a life skill, and children who can swim are 70 to 80% less likely to drown. The Australian Water Safety Council’s aim is for 100% of children to be able to achieve a base level of swimming and survival skills before leaving primary school.
So, enrol your child in a swim school program!
Read more about Child Health and Nutrition