If you will ever ask a child if they would prefer swimming or doing exercises, they will definitely choose swimming, because they consider it a fun activity. This misconception children have, their parents can take advantage of when they want to encourage their kids to be more active to enhance their physical development. Kids associate swimming with playtime because they can splash the other swimmers and they can spend quality time with their friends. But what they do not understand at an early age is that this activity improves their physical fitness and it boosts their growth. If you are a parent and you want to include swimming in your child’s routine then you should know that this exercise will help them grow as fit adults that have a lower risk of experiencing health problems, compared with the risk the children who do not practice a sport have.
Swimming is one of the few sports that a kid will never outgrow, it will remain appropriate for a toddler and for an elder. You have probably noticed that some babies swim before they can walk.
Do children have developmental advantages if they start swimming at a young age?
They earn cognitive skills
Studies showed that the children who learned to swim from a young age were more proficient at identifying number compared with the children who have not started to swim until the same age. They also had better solving arithmetic problems and counting skills. The same children did great when it came to their language skills, they had no issues in reading or speaking orally and they were able to identify objects and shapes in illustrations.
When comparing the non-swimmers with the children who were practicing this activity for around a year the researchers found out that they had the ability to better understand the instructions and to follow them. When the children were asked to recall short stories, they could offer complex details about the events, in opposition to the non-swimmers who had difficulties in narrating a story.
They improve their overall fitness
It does not matter the age of the person; swimming is one of the best physical activities one can practice. While swimming the heart of the child will be on a race and their body will move around the body. The result is a growth of the stamina and fitness and a full body workout. While swimming the child will use all their muscles and they will improve their overall fitness.
As stated before this activity utilises most of the muscle groups because the kid has to work hard against the resistance of the water. Because while in the pool they will kick, stretch, pull and reach through the water their muscles will achieve strength. Swimming makes the children’s muscles more flexible, stronger and longer, but also flexible.
Swimming is the right exercise for children because it is a low impact activity and it is gentle with their body. It does not imply contact and it does not put a strain on their joints. Injuries are quite uncommon experiences at the pool.
When they will learn to master the art of swimming, they will feel confident and relaxed and they will develop a bond with the other swimmers. If they will practice this activity regularly, they will develop healthy sleeping and eating patterns alongside with discipline and vital survival skills.
Guidelines to get your kid to the swimming pool
Sometimes parents prefer to take their children to the swimming pool and teach them some basic aspects before enrolling them to kids swimming lessons. If you want to do the same, you will probably need some tips to know how to introduce them to this new activity.
- On your first swimming lesson, you should ask your partner, a family member or a friend to join you at the swimming pool because there are great chances the little one to start playing around and you will need someone to assist you.
- If you do not have a pool at home and you want to take the kid to a public pool you should check when family sessions are organised because you have to make sure that both children and adults are allowed in the pool at the same time.
- Their first sessions should not be longer than 30 minutes because average toddlers cannot focus more than half of hour to an activity they are performing. If they spend more time in the swimming pool, they can get tired or cold and they will no longer be able to acquire any knowledge.
There are moments when you should not take the child to the swimming pool
As a parent, it is your role to know when to involve your child in certain activities and when to keep them home. If you want to introduce them to swimming in your pool you will have to learn some basics on how to keep a child safe in the water. Before taking them to professional lessons make sure they are not experiencing one of the below situations.
- The little one has an open cut or wound
- They are experiencing an infectious health problem like scarlet fever or chicken pox
- The kid has vomited or they had diarrhoea in the last two days
- They have fever, an inner ear infection or they are experiencing breathing difficulties
- The child suffers from a skin condition. In this situation, it is advisable to have it treated before taking them to swimming lessons because it can get worse.
Swimming is a great activity for a child’s body and mind, and it can instantly lift their mood. When they spend time in the water, they have a feeling of lightness they do not normally have when they practice other types of activities out of the water. The children who start practicing this activity at an early age develop better language skills, boosted confidence levels and have no difficulties in dealing with milestones.