As a swim school in Toronto & North York, we are always asked “When is the right time for my child to begin swimming lessons?” Our professional answer is “as soon as possible.” The key is to start young.
Most people that we speak with agree that swimming is an important life skill that is beneficial, even necessary, to learn and carry throughout life. To many, being in the water is second nature, like riding a bicycle; to others, however, it is a source of fear and can be daunting.
Davina Lopez is the owner and co-founder of Davina’s Swim House and she made sure her children began swimming at 6 weeks old – just like she did. Many families worry about the safety of an infant beginning at such a young age but studies show that infants (and toddlers) are perfectly comfortable in the water and carry aquatic instincts from the womb. Before the age of 2 years, children often have an under-developed sense of fear – they are constantly challenging new boundaries, from walking, to climbing etc. That same lack of fear carries through to the water.
Positive water exposure is imperative before 6 months and should be incorporated into an infants crucial developmental stages in order to prepare your little ones to enjoy their swim time in the future.
What can I do if I’m afraid of water?
This question often plagues concerned parents who may have never learned to swim, or had negative experiences in the past. Sound familiar? This is where the professional expertise of a swim school can help you out. Whether you choose to enter the water with your little swimmer (Parent/tot swimming lessons), or have a confident companion go with them while you proudly watch from the deck, you may find that you will learn even more about water safety, water confidence and positive association than your child does. As children grow older, it becomes increasingly more difficult to get them comfortable in the water. With cognitive development, many of their earlier instincts give way to learned thoughts and behaviors. At this point, swimming lessons encompass not only physical skills, but also exercises in self-trust, instructor trust and overcoming the fears that have developed through their experiences. Swimming lessons may be a source of anxiety, although we find that most kids’ fears are short-lived once their instructors help to build their confidence in the water.
What about me?
This is a very popular question at our swim school! Many adults spend the majority of their lives avoiding swimming pools, lakes and oceans, possibly missing out on many social events and memories with friends and family. At Davina’s Swim House, we firmly believe that it is never too late to learn! When it comes to adult lessons, it is mainly a mental game – our bodies are fully developed and equipped with the ability to swim.