Recently I was at the pools and I got talking to another parent. She started saying she had taken her child out of swimming lessons during the winter because he continually got sick and wondered if she was getting value for money.
If she just knew how to teach him herself or they told her what to do at home it would make a huge difference. She suggested lessons for parents. To teach them how to teach.
As we all know swimming lessons are expensive. At Turtle Swim School we try to keep our prices affordable. I can understand that it would get frustrating when your child is always sick and missing swimming lessons.
There is a lot you can do at home or at the pools yourself. I have mentioned it before but always worth saying again.
Do you need to know the steps to get your kids progressing? Here they are!
The first step for your children is Water Confidence.
Go to the pools and just play with your kids, never force them under the water they will do it when they are ready. Once they have water confidence and are happy going under the water the next step is Floating.
Try to have fun with floating, get your kids floating like mushrooms or balls. Maybe they could float in the letter of their name.
Get your kids Gliding from one parent to the wall or from one parent to the other. They need to be looking down to be able to float on their fronts so maybe put some sinkers at the bottom that they can see. Use boards or the big floating mats that are free to use at public pools. They will find it easier to float with aids. Then try and get them floating with you holding them and then decrease the amount of help.
Remember to try and make it fun and don’t be too concerned if you don’t get what you want out of your kids. Make is relaxed and fun they will get there.
I have been teaching my own two kids for a couple of years now and it is a challenge but worth it when you see the improvement. We go to the pools and spend on average between 1-2 hours at the pool most of the time playing, but they still learn. I also use a bit of bribery telling them they will get a special treat if they show me their best swimming.
After your kids can glide, Kicking comes next. The legs need to be stretched out and long. The kick comes from the hip and the toes are pointed.
Then they need to do big arm strokes with kicking. Arms need to be reaching up high, legs out long with pointy toes and floppy feet.
Breathing is the next progression. This one may be a bit tricky and may be worth looking at starting swimming lessons. But by all means have a go. The main thing with breathing that does get looked over is if the children are blowing bubbles. I often start teaching breathing but having the kids stationary and getting them bobbing up and down just blowing bubbles and then breathing.
I do believe that you can teach your kids to swim up to a certain point. Breathing does get a bit tricky and would suggest that when they reach this stage you do start to look at putting them into swimming lessons. Getting them up to the stage of breathing yourself would have saved you a lot of money.
Start with water confidence, then move onto floating on their fronts and backs. Gliding, kicking and then arm strokes. Make it fun and don’t worry too much about structure as they will learn as they play.
Ensure that you go to the pools at least once a week or more to keep up the confidence and water play.
If you need any advice please ask. I am more than happy to help out. Helene Aitchison at firstname.lastname@example.org or on https://www.facebook.com/TurtleswimschoolNZ