Swimming is an iconic part of Australian culture.
As an island country with a warm climate, we are lucky enough to have beautiful beaches nearby to enjoy. And if the beach is a little too far away, there’s likely to be a great local recreation centre or a friend’s backyard pool to splash around in.
At the core of these activities is a child’s ability to swim – they don’t have to be Ian Thorpe in the pool, but knowing
There are so many benefits to enrolling your child in a kids swim school, including drowning prevention, keeping active, making new friends, improving confidence and of course, having fun!
1. Safety Aspects
At the centre of these activities is the ability to swim, which many children in Australia are fortunate enough to learn from a young age.
Becoming confident and familiar with what to do around bodies of water can instil those critical safety messages and skills within your child.
While it may be easy to adopt a ‘it won’t happen to me’ attitude, thinking your child will never be left unsupervised around water, the reality is that even a split second of inattention can be fatal.
More than that, you can’t always be there to supervise your kids – they may go to a friend’s house for a swim or go on a school camp where there are bodies of water.
Drownings don’t just occur in the heat of summer – around one third of drowning deaths in Australia occur in Autumn and Winter.
At kids’ swim school, some of the first skills children are taught involve putting their head underwater, blowing bubbles and floating. These skills are vital when it comes to swimming and can help to avoid an accident around the water becoming fatal.
As children age and their skill set improves, the focus of swimming lessons involves the mastery of different swimming strokes, as well as how to help others in distress, which helps children to further improve their confidence in the pool.
Increase Confidence Around Bodies of Water
Studies have shown that the earlier children start swimming lessons, the more confident they become in the water. Children who do swimming lessons become more independent, learn to identify risks and make better decisions around the water.
AUSTSWIM suggests 6 months as the most common starting age for baby swim classes.
Important Message: Always Keep Watch
According to Royal Life Saving’s National Drowning Report, lapses in supervision continue to be contributory factor in child drowning, particularly in the 0-4 year old age group.
While your child may be learning vital swimming skills, active supervision of your child is still the key to their safety.
Royal Life Saving notes that “Active supervision means focusing all of your attention on your children all of the time, when they are in, on or around the water. You must be within arms’ reach, interacting with your child and be ready to enter the water in case of an emergency.”
2. Health Related
Swimming isn’t just for fun or safety – swimming for exercise is a great way to keep fit too.
If you’re looking for a great all-round activity for your kids, swimming offers a fun way to get your child’s cardiovascular system working without the heavy impact on their joints, bones and muscles.
Proven to Help with Asthma
Swimming is recommend as an exercise for asthma sufferers because it has been shown to increase lung function, builds up the muscles you use for breathing and improves cardio fitness without triggering asthma symptoms.
In addition, the warm, humid environment of a pool is less triggering for asthma symptoms.
It’s important to keep your asthma ‘reliever’ inhaler close by and ensure you warm up and cool down properly to help prevent exercise-induced asthma.
Improves Strength & Builds Muscles
Undertaking regular swimming lessons, doing laps at the pool or even just getting your child to practise their swimming at home can help to build muscle across the entire body.
Swimming works the muscles in the arms and upper body, the core and the legs.
But don’t worry, your child won’t turn into Arnold Schwarzenegger overnight – swimming will just help to work all their muscles and build a solid foundation for them to participate in other sports.
Effective, Safe Exercise for Overweight or Obese Children
Swimming offers a low impact, full-body workout for kids who want to improve their fitness or keep fit.
It is particularly beneficial for children who are overweight or obese, as it is much easier to move through the water than it is on land. Rather than running to keep, children can jump in the water and get their legs kicking.
Plus, swimming is an effective way to burn calories, with approximately 500-600 calories burned per hour while swimming.
Improves Flexibility and Motor Skills
The range of motion involved in swimming can work to lengthen the muscles, making your child’s joints more flexible. It’s not quite the level of flexibility that one may achieve through yoga, gymnastics or dancing, but it is certainly valuable.
Swimming also assists in the development of coordination and gross motor skills, which can help children as they learn to read and write.
While this might be one of those issues for parents to deal with instead of kids, it’s definitely worth knowing that activities such as swimming have been shown to reduce inflammation in the body, particularly inflammation that leads to atherosclerosis (narrowed artery) build-up in the heart.
3. Social Aspects
Swimming lessons provide a great environment for kids to catch up with their friends and even make new friends.
Great Way to Make New Friends
When kids are in the water with their friends, either during swimming lessons or just enjoying the pool, they form a bond with one another based on trust.
During structured swimming lessons and summer fun in the backyard, children enhance their socialisation skills and learn to treat one another in a respectful, safe way – all while having fun!
This helps to foster strong friendships and develops a solid base from which children feel confident making other friends.
Provides A Weekly Activity for Kids to Meet Up with Their Friends
Getting in some physical activity – check.
Learning water safety skills – check.
Having fun – check.
Getting to do it all while hanging out with their friends weekly – triple check!
Swimming lessons provide a great, structured way for kids to hang out with their friends AND learn some vital skills at the same time.
In addition, it also gives you time to grab a coffee and meet or catch up with other parents watching their kids.
4. Mental Wellbeing and Confidence
While the obvious benefit of swimming is an improvement to physical health, it is also hugely beneficial to mental health and wellbeing as well.
Jumping into the water to swim or splash about is a perfect way to have a bit of a mental break and recharge.
Exercise for swimming is an effective and fun way for children to reduce their stress levels, with the brain releasing neurochemicals that give that sense of euphoria.
Improve Self Confidence
Being a kid can be tough and sometimes during team sports, your child might feel inadequate compared to other kids.
Swimming is a great way to give kids a confidence boost, as they can celebrate their individual achievements as they improve their skills and reach their goals.
While swimming can be a competitive sport, it can just as much be a sport your child enjoys on their own.
5. Swimming is Fun
Last but not least – swimming is F-U-N!
Pools, beaches and lakes are part of life and summer fun here in Western Australia, so learning to swim is a quintessential, yet fun part of our Aussie culture.
Learn to Swim at Bayswater Waves Swim School
If you’re looking for a kids swim school that is dedicated to helping your child progress through each stage of swimming, join our family at Bayswater Waves Swim School
At Bayswater Waves, we love seeing the satisfaction that parents and children show as they learn new swimming skills, meet up with friends and generally enjoy the awesome facilities we have.
Sign your children up to our kids swim school today to give them a lifetime love of the water.
Contact Bayswater Waves Swim School today to make an enquiry about upcoming swimming lessons.