If you do not want your child to grow up into a couch potato, you need to keep her active from a very early age. How about signing your toddler up for a swimming class this summer vacation? Swimming is a fun, low-impact workout that your little one is sure to love. However, you need to check out the hygiene standards and safety measures that a swimming pool maintains before enrolling your child. It would be good if you train yourself on CPR and water safety techniques before your kiddo joins his swimming lessons.
Swimming comes with a plethora of health and cognitive benefits. Apart from keeping your little one cool in the sultry summer days, it will give her a very good full body workout. Moreover, the swimming lessons will keep your child happy and engaged during her summer vacation.
As already mentioned, swimming is a full body workout. It prevents your child from gaining excessive body weight by keeping her active. Notably, childhood obesity is linked to juvenile diabetes.
Swimming will boost the strength of your child’s muscles lending them flexibility. It will also rev up his stamina, and improve his posture. When your little one swims, he has to maintain a horizontal position throughout. This will give him better body balance.
This water workout promotes heart and lung health. With its natural resistance, water will help in the development of strong bones and joints. Also, swimming comes with a very low risk of injury.
According to a study published in the American Journal of Physiology, immersing ourselves in water increases blood flow to the brain. This, in turn, revs up our memory, focus, clarity and mood. It was found in the study that study volunteers who dipped themselves in a swimming pool up to the heart level had a 14 per cent increased blood flow to their middle cerebral arteries and 9 per cent boost in their blood flow to the to the posterior cerebral arteries. Also, it has been found that the moves involved in swimming activate both the hemispheres of the brain which improves cognitive and learning capacities. There are also various studies which have associated swimming with faster milestones including gross and visual motor skills.
You need to prepare your little bundle of joy before heading to the swimming pool. Here are some fun ways to get him to love water, if he already doesn’t.
Take him to the bathtub: Instead of bathing your child in a normal tub, start diving into your bathtub with him a few weeks before introducing him to the swimming pool. A dip in the bathtub will prepare your child for the feelings of water over his head and complete immersion, that he is going to experience during his splish splash moments.
Discuss with your paediatrician: Yes, that’s a must. He will able to tell you if your little one’s motor skills are well-developed for taking on an activity like swimming. However, in case of swimming, it can be safely said that the earlier, the better.
Ask for a morning class: If you are planning to sign her up for a class, choose an early morning slot at least during the summer vacation. This will give a good start to her day and keep her energetic throughout. It will also make sure that her habit of waking up early in the morning stays intact so she doesn’t find it troublesome to continue with this routine when her school reopens. However, the swimming class shouldn’t interfere with
Before introducing your toddler to the swimming pool, you take the plunge. Request a female member or a friend to accompany you who can take care of your child as you swim. Enjoy the moment while immersing yourself in the water. Your child will take cues from your mood and expressions and associate happiness and positive emotions with swimming. He will start loving the water and feel that swimming pool is a safe place to be in. Also, when you dip your child in the kiddie pool for the first time, carry his favourite water toy and play with it in the water. Hold him under his armpits and swing him mildly in the water as you sing along. This will keep your sweet pea in a happy mood and he is less likely to feel scared.
Request the trainer to ease your child in the swimming pool. He can start by dipping your little one’s feet and then go further down. However, it is advised to go only up to the chin at the first instance.
Make sure your child can see you when she is in the swimming pool. Try to stay as close as possible. This will give her a sense of security.
Some kids develop an instant connect with the water, while others take time. If you find her upset or scared don’t for your toddler to stay in the pool. Her first experience in the pool has to be a positive one. Take her out of the pool, comfort her, offer her something to eat and allow her to rest. Try for 3 days in a row to make her comfortable. If it doesn’t work out give it a month-long break and try again.