Entries for the ‘Learn to swim’ Category

Swim like a fish

Friday, October 26th, 2007

On Saturday mornings I take my children to swimming lessons. Fortunately in Canada, there are lots of indoor swimming pools at the community centres and fitness clubs and one can have the opportunity to take their children swimming no matter what season it is.

Over here they teach children to swim in different Red Cross levels. Each level requires the children to learn different swimming techniques and to complete the level by the end of the 8-10 week session. If they do complete the level they are then able to move to the next Red cross Swim level and also receive a Red Cross badge. Unfortunately they have changed the requirements in the swimming levels and made it a little more difficult to complete each level.

Personally I think there are more disadvantages then advantages for a child to learn how to swim this way. Firstly, instead of encouraging children to want to learn to swim and have great confidence when swimming, it can really do the opposite. Secondly they do not actually learn how to be safe in the water by themselves or even learn to swim properly until they’ve completed the first 4 - 5 levels. This may actually take quite a few years.

When I was young the first thing they taught us to do was tread water and “doggy paddle”. At least if you fell in the water you knew how to do something. After that, we were taught the techniques of swimming.

A lot of young children have trouble putting their faces in the water. So each time they do not do this, they fail completing the level. Of course this does not help their desire to swim or their confidence.

If you do have a child that is afraid to put their face in the water, don’t make an issue of it. Give swimming a break for awhile, and I promise as they mature they will do it on their own.

Try not to make swimming lessons such a chore, rather let your children have fun and enjoy the water.  I hope that all your children learn how to swim like a fish.

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