Toddler swimming lessons are probably one of the many activities on your new or soon-to-be parent to-do list. Giving your toddler the chance to develop swimming skills will help provide them with a solid start in their physical, social and cognitive development for a range of reasons.
We've paired up with KingSwim Swim School to share with you a quick breakdown of what you can expect when you introduce your little one to their first swimming lesson experience.
When should my toddler start swimming lessons?
Children can start swimming lessons from as young as three months old, which will aid in their physical and cognitive development, as well as help them become used to being in the water.
How do toddler swimming lessons differ from kids swimming lessons?
Toddler swimming lessons focus mainly on water safety and how to behave properly around water, rather than skill development. Many of the activities are geared towards playing, such as rhyming games, supporting their learning, and their natural ability to imitate the actions of those around them. We have a variety of ages in our toddler classes which allows them to observe and role-model each other’s actions and behaviours.
Any tips for toddler swimming lessons?
– The more time that toddlers spend in the water, the faster they will learn.
– It helps immensely if you are consistent with instructions and guidelines when it comes to water safety.
– You should always actively supervise your child around water.
Do parents need to get involved in toddler swimming lessons?
Parents are involved for the entirety of the lesson in order to provide for the support and safety of their children, as effective learning can only take place if the child is assisted correctly. It’s also a great opportunity for parents and toddlers to bond and build on their relationships.
What do you bring for toddler swimming lessons?
The most important items to bring for toddlers are a towel and a swim nappy. Parents are encouraged to wear t-shirts so toddlers can learn to grab hold of something when they are finishing their swim.
Should my toddler eat any food just before swimming lessons?
It is recommended that a light snack be eaten at least 30 minutes prior to the beginning of class, this will help provide your toddler with some energy as they participate and move around during the swimming lesson.
What are the benefits of toddler swimming lessons?
The benefits of swimming lessons for toddlers and young children are immense, as they will become more familiar with water and reduce the risk of drowning, as well as improve their coordination, balance and muscle.
A Landmark study by Griffith University, led by Professor Robyn Jorgensen*, has found that children who take swimming lessons from a young age reach many developmental milestones significantly earlier than their non-swimming peers.
The study’s findings showed swimming kids perform significantly better than normal populations at many social-emotional, physical, intellectual and language skills such as:
– visual-motor tasks like drawing lines and cutting paper;
– mathematical tasks;
– following instructions;
– cooperation and taking turns;
– literacy and numeracy;
– language skills and expressing themselves verbally;
– sense of time;
– reduced separation anxiety from parents;
– and water safety and skill development.
The study found that the longer children were in swimming lessons, the greater the individual benefits were as they got older.
How do I introduce my toddler to the pool?
– Supervised water play;
– Frequent supervised visits to the pool;
– Book in for swimming lessons.
Are you planning on introducing your little one to swimming lessons soon? Join the conversation and share your thoughts via our Facebook or Instagram, or head to Kingswim to find out more about toddler swimming lessons.
* Source – Robyn Jorgensen, Griffith University, “Early Years Swimming – Adding Capital to Young Australians”, Interim Report, Nov 2012.