Baby Swimming Lessons – Top 10 Useful Tips for Parents
Baby Swimming Lessons – Top 10 Useful Tips for Parents
Most parents are quite apprehensive of exposing their precious baby to a swimming pool. After all, letting your child into a huge, water-filled space, when he cannot walk or speak even, seems quite risky.
However, studies suggest that infant swimming lessons significantly reduce the risk of drowning in babies aged 4 months to 1 year, while also helping in the development of their motor skills. While some parents choose to take their babies swimming all by themselves, for first-time parents, it may perhaps be better to enrol for baby swimming lessons.
If you too are contemplating going in for swimming lessons for your baby, be armed with all possible information regarding the same. This is a big step for both, you as a parent, and your child in his interaction with the outside world, so some extra caution wouldn’t hurt.
Here are some useful tips on baby swimming lessons, compiled based on the observations and recommendations of experts in the field. Read on and prep yourself the right way!
Choose the Right Time
There are baby swimming centers that offer courses for infants as young as 4 weeks old though most do not prefer children younger than 6 weeks. Most instructors believe that a baby 4 months old is suitably able to enjoy and participate in swimming activities. However, you need to realize that every child is unique. If you do not feel comfortable about enrolling your baby for swimming lessons when he is 4 months old, wait till when you are ready – there is no rush. If you feel you are being paranoid, consult a local baby swimming instructor; that will reassure you and give you much clarity. Also, it is equally important for the parent to be in a healthy state, so if it’s the mother who is going to be in the pool with the baby, she should have recovered from the pregnancy experience completely.
The most important decision in the entire process is selecting where to enrol your child. Before all else, scout all your options. Look into the programs that various swimming academies are offering and choose one that that is most logistically viable – the timings, duration, location etc, should be suitable for you. Also, choose a program that is compatible with your child’s temperament; for instance, if he is shy and easily upset, lessons in large groups would be ill-advised and private lessons would be better. If, on the other hand, your baby loves company, enrolling for group lessons would be best. A group of 10-15 baby-parent couples is usually formed, which is just the right amount of company with respect to the latter scenario.
Ensure Safety Measures
Though as a parent, there are several safety measure you personally have to take, much onus of the baby’s wellbeing is also upon the swimming academy. So, make sure that the swimming academy is taking safety measures that are satisfactory; go and observe an ongoing class beforehand. See if the life guards are helpful and vigilant. Verify if the water temperature is as prescribed (most pools for young infants maintain a temperature of 32 degrees). You should be convinced before enrolling that your child is going to enjoy a safe, risk-free experience or otherwise you shall be constantly worried.
Have Your Kit Ready
Like all things parental, forearmed is the way to go. Once you begin with the baby swimming lessons make sure you carry all essentials, and then some more. First and most importantly, do pack in reusable skin nappies. Also, keep for sure, either a bottle of warm milk if your baby is still on liquids or a snack if he has started with solids – the exertion is sure to make him hungry. Then there should be a towel, or more preferably hooded towelling gown, to dry the baby off after the swim. Finally, a good idea would be to carry some of his bath toys to release in the water for creating a more familiar, comforting atmosphere.
When in the Water
Now once the lessons have begun, you would think that now the instructor is in-charge and you must follow him. That of course is of requisite importance -, following the guide’s every command. However, more important is to put your child at ease. Make sure to give him a sense of security and comfort – do not break eye-contact, hold him close to you, gently but firmly and talk to him encouraging even though he may not understand you. All this tends to instil more confidence in children, particularly in those who do not take to water immediately. In addition to this, remain within his sight at all times and do not exhibit any form of anxiety or displeasure under any circumstances; this tends to make children nervous and fidgety.
Don’t Push Too Hard
Some parents forget that swimming lessons for infants are not meant to be training prelims. They are simply for the purpose of allowing the child to acclimate to water bodies and also as precautionary anti-drowning measures. Even as the instructors will attempt to teach the babies how to float on their backs and move along in water on their front-side, that’s all you should expect from them. Do not push your baby’s limits and encourage him to exert himself further or try something more elaborate.
Avoid These Mistakes
There are some things you must not do for the sake of everyone’s wellbeing. First, do not let anymore than the baby’s face and shoulders be above the water, for otherwise he may feel cold. Two, do not let him remain in the water if he begins shivering – wrap him in a warm towel instead immediately. Do not take your baby into the pool if he is not in perfect health condition; wait two days after his recovery before going swimming. Do not ignore any signs of skin irritation post a swimming session for that could mean your baby is allergic to chlorine – check with first the instructor and then a physician as soon as signs of skin problem appear. What is advisable is to go to a swimmingpool with a salt water system because chemical chlorine is of course not safe for babies, especially those with a sensetive skin and asthma.
Observe Your Child
While taking the lessons, pay close attention to your baby’s behaviour; how he reacts to the water, how he reacts to guidance, which techniques he responds to better, so on and so forth. Such observation will allow you to ascertain what the general characteristics of his disposition and cognitive inclination are. This may help in later stages of development, when you have to teach the infant other skills like walking, talking, etc. Most parents claim to understand their babies better after taking infant swimming lessons.
It often happens that parents become slightly complacent when their child gets comfortable in the water. They tend to get lax in their attentiveness to him, which is absolutely unadvisable. Accidents happen in the blink of an eye and you have to be aware of your child’s every move. Some parents ensure this by having both mother and father in the pool so the baby is doubly watched. Also, as an attentive parent you should be able to realize if your kid is behaving differently on a particular day. This may mean he is either uncomfortable in the water due to altered conditions or slightly under the weather or maybe even sick. Either way, you should abandon the lesson immediately and try to ascertain what the problem is.
This is a very important part of baby swimming lessons – having fun. Ultimately, you are going to such lengths not to make your baby miserable, but more able, healthy and happy. So your prime focus should not be on ensuring he learns quickly or perfectly, but that he enjoys himself. Keep his bath toys around, play with him yourself and let this be a special time of parent-child interaction. Such activities help strengthen bonding, making the child more attached and affectionate. It thus goes without saying that if your baby shows signs of being upset, uncomfortable or cranky whenever in water, you should not persist with the lessons. He may have an aversion to water and forcing him into it will be unpleasant for him.
With these things in your mind, you should be fairly well-equipped to begin with swimming lessons for your baby. But keep in mind that even as you have an idea of what to expect and be vigilant of, being in the pool with a baby is a completely different thing. It cannot be stressed enough that you have be extremely careful when in water, making sure your baby is not under any distress under any circumstance.
A good way to ensure that the swimming lessons are a success is to enrol in company. If your baby is familiar with some other babies, it would be great if they could take lessons together. The bottom line however remains to be that baby swimming lessons, though enjoyable, require much time and effort on your part. So take them up only when you are well-prepared for the added responsibility.
“YES, I am ready to enrol my baby in swimming class!”
These are some of our recommended swimming schools in Klang Valley who offers swimming lessons for babies:-
Image credit: Putrajaya Swimming Class
- AQUA BABIES SWIMMING CLASS – by Putrajaya Swimming Class
Location: Palm Garden Hotel, Putrajaya
Lesson Fees: RM 250 for 8 lessons
Image credit: Splash Aquatic Center
- SWIMMING CLASS FOR BABIES – by Splash Aquatic Centre
Location: Shah Alam
Lesson Fees: RM 530 for 8 lessons
Image credit: Berenang Itu Best
- BABY & ME – by Berenang Itu Best (BIB) Swim
Location: Jalan Padang, PJ Old Town
Lesson Fees: RM 650 for 12 lessons or RM 1200 for 24 lessons
Image credit: Advanced Aquatics
- AQUA BABIES SWIMMING – by Advanced Aquatics
We have listed the Aqua babies classes Advanced Aquatics provides for you:
- [FOUNDATION] Aqua Babies Swimming Class In Puchong
- [INTERMEDIATE] Aqua Babies Swimming Class In Puchong
- [ADVANCED] Aqua Babies Swimming Class In Puchong
- [FOUNDATION] Aqua Babies Swimming Class In Bandar Utama PJ
- [INTERMEDIATE] Aqua Babies Swimming Class In Bandar Utama PJ
- [ADVANCED] Aqua Babies Swimming Class In Bandar Utama PJ
- 1-On-1 Baby Swimming Lesson In Bandar Utama PJ
- [FOUNDATION] Aqua Babies Swimming Class In Jalan Ampang KL
- Aqua Babies Swimming Class In Cheras
- [FOUNDATION] Aqua Babies Swimming Class In Sri KDU, Kota Damansara
- [IN-HOUSE] 1on1 Baby Swimming Lesson In Klang Valley
- [FOUNDATION] Aqua Babies Swimming Class In Shah Alam
- [FOUNDATION] Aqua Babies Swimming Class In Petaling Jaya
- [FOUNDATION] Aqua Babies Swimming Class In UKM Bangi