The mini-monsters have turned into aquatic monsters this month, we recently received a family pass to our local pool and have been taking full advantage of it!
I think my favourite part has been to see them gain confidence in the water; the youngest one went from not wanting his face to be near the watery stuff to now splashing around like a seal pup. His swimming style is probably not the most graceful but he is happy and can stay afloat on his own. I think that we underestimate the importance of learning skills like swimming or cycling. On the face of it, these skills perhaps don’t seem all that important but the feeling of accomplishment that they bring is oh so important to a child’s development.
Swimming is a great way to keep active as a family and while of getting everyone into and out of a swimming costumes may seem like a hassle, view it as an additional part of the workout or try and make it into a game or challenge for the mini-monsters- who can be the first to do up all their buttons, who can get their sons on the quickest. Look for family changing rooms or area when you go swimming, keeping all you kiddos in one enclosed space will significantly decrease your stress! Another way to make the experience less stressful is to dress your kids appropriately for swimming! By this I mean look for things that are easy to get on and off, skinny jeans are friends to no one after a swim, dresses, shorts, slip on shoes are all much easier to put on slightly damp squirmy mini monsters.
Kids that are nervous around water usually have parents that are nervous around water. If you never had the chance to learn to swim, learning as a family can be a wonderful bonding experience and you will benefit from the sense of accomplishment and confidence just as much as the children. Adult swimming lessons also exist and may be a good option if you are overly nervous about being in the water or if your child is already engaged in swimming lessons of their own. The reason I push the adult swimming lessons is because if you are going to pay for your child to learn to swim but you don’t swim yourself how likely are you to take your kids to the pool once their lessons are over?