Ever since S was born, he has always loved water. He was never one of those new borns who cried every time he had to have a bath or a baby who didn’t like being taken swimming. In fact, quite the opposite. I once put him in the bath just to calm him down and it settled him immediately. He is a total water baby!
When he was 15 months old I started taking him for swimming lessons. I was a little nervous about submerging him initially but when I saw how he coped, it put all my fears to rest. It took him a few times to get the “ready, go…dunk” signal but now he knows when it’s coming.
Yesterday I took him swimming, he was having the time of his life in the baby pool (he could stand) and so was walking around pulling his inflatable toys about. Suddenly some children started splashing near him and S lost his balance and fell forward. My heart was in my mouth and I leaned in to pick him up when suddenly I see him kicking and moving his arms, “swimming” in his own little way to the edge of the pool. PROUD MUMMY MOMENT!! I knew he enjoyed his swimming lessons and of course the water in general but I didn’t realise how much he’d picked up from the 8 classes we went to.
Even after falling in, S didn’t cry or want to get out of the water. In fact he kept bending his knees trying to attempt it again. He never ceases to amaze me!
In my opinion, knowing how to swim is very important and the earlier children learn, the better. It’s one of those abilities you never know when you’ll need, it can be a real life saver!! Drowning is one of the biggest causes of accidental death in young children. Getting into the pool early and often is the key to success when it comes to teaching children how to swim.
It’s also important to have an accredited swimming teacher, especially if your child is young. A few months ago I saw a YouTube video teaching babies between the age of 6-12 months how to turn over in a pool and float on their backs. It’s amazing to watch how such a young baby stays safe in the face of a water accident.
*Water temperature for a baby should be around 30 degrees.