When Kids Should Start Swimming Lessons?
Starting to learn to swim is a big step for many kids (and often for those who do!).
Even if you go to the pool regularly yourself, you often don't know what to bring for your child's first swim lesson.
That's why we want to help by sharing some steps you should take ahead of time and what to bring for the first lesson.
Before the lesson
We strongly recommend that you familiarize your child with the local pool and the area around it. Family trips to the pool are the perfect way to do this and also make a great day out!
It can also be helpful to ask at the pool what the dress code is for class and if you need to bring anything extra.
Some pools impose a dress code, such as no long shorts or swim caps for kids with long hair. If you are not sure, call the pool.
The lessons themselves
It's a good idea to involve your child in preparing for swim lessons so they know what to expect when they go to the pool. Use our checklist to make sure you have everything you need.
Baby swim lessons
Aquatic programs for infants are often fun for both parents and children. However, the American Academy of Paediatrics (AAP) does not recommend swimming lessons for children under one year of age because they have not yet developed the breathing skills necessary for swimming and are therefore unable to swim independently1.
In addition, there is no evidence that swimming lessons for children reduce the risk of drowning. There is no substitute for parental supervision in the water. However, the AAP recommends classes in which parent-child pairs participate in water play activities that help children become accustomed to the water1.
When looking for a class for you and your child, look for programs where instructors are certified by the American Red Cross as lifeguards and in first aid/resuscitation, and that promise fun in the water rather than the unrealistic (and potentially dangerous) goal of teaching a child to swim.
According to the program, children can start swimming lessons at the age of two months. At this age, they do not swim yet, but together with their parents and caregivers learn to feel comfortable in the water. All the baby needs to get started is a pair of reliable swim diapers and a swimsuit, which our experts say are essential to contain fecal matter. (If fecal matter enters the pool, the pool must be closed for sanitary reasons.)
As for swimwear, it's not essential to buy a traditional one if you buy a good diaper cover, "It's made of neoprene and fits over the swim diaper. It ties around the waist and thighs to secure it."
Saying the wide straps keep anything solid out of the pool, keeping the water (and swimmers) healthy. Reiss also appreciates the fact that they look like bathing suits and says they're also perfect for older kids who may already be potty-trained but still have to wear diapers in the pool, which they may not like. "Kids forget to go to the bathroom when they go in the water," she says. "They need that protective layer, and because it resembles a swimsuit, it's not stigmatizing or traumatic. Happy diapers come in a variety of fun designs and colors and in sizes from newborn to 3 years old.
Children learn a lot in the first years of life. Think about it: they start crawling, then walking, and soon they can talk and walk. Before you know it, kids can be attending kindergarten and playing lots of learning games for kids. It seems that every day there is something new to learn.
When you decide to enroll your child in a swimming class, it can seem a little daunting at first. What items should you pack? You probably haven't thought about this before. Follow the quick checklist below to prepare the necessary items for your child's first swim lesson.
Make sure you have a backpack or bag for everything you need.
Don't forget the swim diapers for your child, which are mandatory for the class.
Bring another pair of clothes and dry diapers or diapers for the end of the course.
Of course, you will also need to bring a bathing suit.
Bring a large towel for each child and a towel for the parents attending the class.
Have a plastic bag ready to put the swimsuits and towels in.
Bring a small healthy snack for the end of class. They can also bring their own water bottle.
For younger children who have just started swimming, you will receive an informational letter explaining what to expect from swim lessons and what to bring to your first lesson.
Sometimes parents want to provide their children with swim toys that they think will help them swim. In the beginning, it is not necessary to use floaties or pool noodles. You can check with your instructor to see what toys you can practice with outside of class.
Nose and ear plugs are also not required. When children are learning to swim, they have the full attention of their instructors and learning to swim underwater or hold their breath takes time. If your child absolutely needs a nose and ear plugs, you can discuss this with the instructor.
Follow the swim school rules when it comes to bringing food. Remember that this is one hour of swim lessons per week. Don't send your children to summer camp yet! As long as they know the basics of swimming, they will have no problems.
Swimming is fun! Learning to swim is also fun if you pack the necessary equipment. However, Hubbard Family Swim School is here for you if you forget the essentials: Each facility offers a snack bar and a pro store where you can purchase items like diapers and towels. After all, the most important thing is that you have fun in the water with your children.