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Swim lessons?

OneSmallStepOneSmallStep Posts: 1,685
edited November -1 in Pregnancy and Babies
We have a fish. No seriously, I swear this kid was a fish in another life the way he loves the water. I don't know if it's because he was born in water or what, but since birth he has *loved* baths. He will go from crying to completely happy in .1 second if we put him a bathtub. While we were up visiting family in Ohio we let him get in a indoor heated pool and he was in 7th heaven! I held him and he instantly started kicking his legs and moving his arms all around.

Since being back we have gotten a kids pool to put on our carport (so that DW and Stitch can go in it during the day without getting direct sunlight.) And we've also brought him to the big pool once the sun goes down, at our complex. He absolutely loves it every time. He moves his legs and his arms, he's even splashed himself and at first went "woa.." and then was all happy about it.

I am just wondering, what is taught at swim lessons? I know there are the safety ones that are different but I can't think of their name? Also, is there anything I should look for when looking for swim lessons? And does anyone know if it's just the norm that most won't start until at least 6 months? Oh and how about a price range? I have no clue what a reasonable price for lessons would be?

Also, I wonder, is it something I could just teach him myself? I mean, does he need to go to someone to learn is there something that they know that I don't? I've been swimming since I was around 6-9 months... I know I was told that I walked before 9 months and that we had a pool so we all learned how to swim right before walking. Obviously I would never want to hurt my son and if lessons are the best way for him to learn then by all means I'll get him lessons, I was just wondering since the couple I found said 6 months if there was something I could be teaching him now since we are 1) in the summer and 2) he loves being in the pool so much!

Thanks in advance! :cool:
Hubby of kopykat451
TTC #1 5/16/11 = BFP 14 DPI / TTC #2 11/16/12 = No O; 4/12/13= BFN; 6/9/13 = BFP!! (11 DPI) - MC 5wk5dys / TTC#3 3 BFN's and 4th try 10/21/13 = BFP!!!! (Squinter at 10dpi!)


  • Klt86Klt86 Posts: 567
    edited June 2012
    I was looking into this recently because Mika LOVES the water too and the reason I found they don't start until 6 months is because of bacteria and stuff in the water. I guess they don't recommend taking babies into public pools, lakes etc because of the chance of them catching something that causes diarrhea. They mentioned rotovirus and e coli. By 6 months babies usually have had enough of the vaccine for rotovirus maybe? Also because babies can't regulate their temperature very well before 6 months I guess.
  • ZenZen Posts: 2,942
    edited November -1
    I didn't take Shiloh to the pool until 5 months because I was a little concerned about chlorine. And I'd never leave a young child unsupervised in the pool even with swim lessons and proven performance. But all that aside, I think lessons and pool exposure from a very young age is awesome for kids! Shiloh started out loving the water and I just took for granted that it would always be so. Until I took my 3 year old for swim lessons and was suddenly faced with a child who didn't want to get in the water or go under the water! At two there was no problem. So in thinking to wait until 3-4 to start lessons, I missed my golden window and now have to battle Miss Attitude. Happy to say that I'm winning (or rather pool fun is winning). Two-thumbs up to all those starting sooner!
  • emn'saremn'sar Posts: 393
    edited November -1
    We just finished a 9 week course. Ditto what klt86 said about bacterial infections and temp control (even if a heated pool). I was not going to take that chance. We paid about $145 for nine 30 min classes. There were about 10 kids ranging from 6 mos to 1.5 years old and one instructor. One parent went in the pool with their child. We mostly sang songs and did a swim "dance" to it that might entail splashing, jumping, trickling water over their get the idea. We also did 1-2 submersions per class. This freaked me out a little bc A started the class at 6 months exactly but by the end (8+ months) I seriously saw an improvement. She would jold her breath and not cough and cry when brought up out of the water. They brought out noodles to float the babies around and reach for floating toys, or balls to pass bt partners, and other props. I have to say I LOVED the class. It was awesome bonding time and A loved every minute. She has also always been obsessed with water. She will splash her hands so hard to get water to pour over her face like a waterfall. It's so cute. I can't help w your other questions bc we didn't take the class to teach her to swim this young. We just wanted her to get used to large water areas and play w mommy and other kids. We will continue though so that one day she will learn to swim. I think it's great you notice her love for water and want to get her into classes!
    Avery 2.5 years and Julian 4.5 months
  • K&HK&H Posts: 3,368 ✭✭
    edited November -1
    Swim lessons are tough to gauge without local word of mouth. Speaking as a former children's swim instructor, married to a former lifeguard and swim instructor, I agree that If you can swing the investment the ISR seems brilliant, especially in FL with so much water around. At his age, and at a local Y or gym you're most likely talking "daddy and me" water acclimation, which means bobbing up and down, spinning in circles, maybe a tiny bit of wall "jumping" and a lot of singing songs. It's not meant to teach them to swim, but mostly just to get used to the water. You can most certainly do that in your pool at home.
    As he gets older you'll have more in the way of wall walking, turn and return, breath holding, etc. Most lessons don't teach real swim strokes until much much later.
    Unless you're goin to do ISR you're notgoing to get much for a while. A typical kid in Y swim lessons could start at 6 mos and be swimming independently, no float, at 3, probably more like 3.5. And this would be with lessons once a week for 30 minutes every week nonstop for 3 years. Unless you supplement you're not going to see any faster learning of skills.
    Swimming daily in your own pool will see skills come much faster. At his age you'll be focusing on learning to blow bubbles, getting used to water drippin down his face, trying out floating on his back (put his head face up on your shoulder and hold one hand under his back and one under his bum. This will help him feel secure). As he gets bigger he'll want to move on his own. Do NOT under any circumstances get him any kind of float that is on his arms. Those restrict movement and hinder learning. You want the swim ways float with layers that you can remove as he grows.
  • annerbonesannerbones Posts: 1,812
    edited November -1
    Maggie has been doing swimming lessons since she was 6 months old - basically we started with singing songs dancing in the pool and sprinkling water on her head. Now at 2 she loves the water but swim lesson teach her to blow bubbles, kick, reach and pull, put her face int he water, and basically not be scared of the water. Right now it sucks because she does all this stuff and is ready to really learn more but she is to little :( at least by our community centers standards. Our pool does a free week the first week of summer. Then during summer the sessions are 2 weeks (10 lessons) for $49.50.

    Maggie still hates showers or washing her hair but will go underwater in a heartbeat!
    Progesterone therapy and baby aspirin daily

    Two miscarriages in between (August 2012 - same donor as Maggie, and December 2014 with husband)
  • pbpb Posts: 83
    edited June 2012
    Beckham did ISR. It was one on one with the instructor no more than 10 minutes a day 5 days a week. They did a lot of things to insure the safety of the kids like they press the baby's heel to make sure he isn't cold. They burp the baby a million times because the swallow a lot of air and water at first. They also give you a sheet to fill out everyday about the child's eating, sleeping and bathroom habits to make sure the child isn't in distress. Beckham started when he was around six months and now he is almost 4 and he has always been able to swim without any flotation devices. We live in CT and it was $190 (I think) a week. We only have 2 certified instructors in our area. I cannot say enough good things about ISR. Now with Paige-I just threw her in the pool when she was 3 months old. She just knew how to swim-newborns/infants have the innate ability to swim. I did send her to lessons at the Y just to learn strokes. I'm an awesome swimmer but she listened much better to the instructors She started swim team at 4 and so will Beckham. Good luck

    Sorry for the typos. I'm on my phone and don't feel like fixing them like insure should be ensure-sorry
  • A&JA&J Posts: 1,825
    edited November -1
    We have been doing swimming lessons at the Y since Liv was 6 months. It is pretty much like what K&H described. We go 2x per week, sing songs, float on belly, flip to back, immerse the kids underwater by passing from parent to instructor and back, Liv now jumps in from the side and goes under and pops back up and I grab her :) We sing more songs, paddle and kick after water toys, do the crab walk, use kick boards, floating back packs, life jackets, and more songs :) Not all of this is at every session, but wanted to gie you an idea. Liv was also born in water and I feel like she's a little fish too. I feel like this allows her a safe and fun way to interact with water and her mommy. I don't know that this will make her a better swimmer, but I know we have a lot of fun! As for cost I know a membership JUST for kids which includes all of the classes which they are old enough for is $34/ month.
  • OneSmallStepOneSmallStep Posts: 1,685
    edited June 2012
    @coryandamanda: thanks, that's the one I couldn't think of but wanted to look into. I saw people talking about it on here before. Amazingly enough though, when I checked out the website there's not one in this area, they are all out in the Tampa/Clearwater area!

    @klt86, makes sense I guess. When we've brought him in the water we always check his "temp" to see if he's regulating and so far he seems to be. Plus he hasn't had any vaccines, but we also haven't had any issues with him getting sick after being in the water.

    @Zen, ya I've heard that before! Growing up we always had a pool so we all learned right away and I just figured he should as well. Glad the pool fun and you are winning with Shiloh, especially here in Florida swimming is way too fun to miss out on!

    @emn'sar, sounds like it was a good way to introduce her to the water that's for sure!

    @k&H, thanks for all the info! That's what I was thinking they might do at a regular swim lesson. Unfortunately looks like all of the ISR classes are further away, and if they start at 6 months that'll be right when DW goes back into in person classes 4 days a week so driving that far may not end up doable, but we're gonna talk it over and see what we can come up with. Also we definitely plan on keeping up with skills beyond just whatever lessons he does. We love spending lots of time in the water and want him to feel just as comfy in there! Oh and I know exactly what you mean about the floats that can be removed as they grow. I was actually really pleased to see that they sell them at a lot of the stores I've looked. That's the type we had growing up, in fact all 5 of my Dad's kids used the same yellow one for learning!

    @annerbones: That stinks! Awesome that she wants to do more and is enjoying it so much, but really stinks that she is too little to be let to go further!

    @pb, Thanks, that's good to know more about the process that they do!

    @A&J: Sounds like a lot of fun, and something we'll look into even if just for the water bonding experiences! :cool:
    Hubby of kopykat451
    TTC #1 5/16/11 = BFP 14 DPI / TTC #2 11/16/12 = No O; 4/12/13= BFN; 6/9/13 = BFP!! (11 DPI) - MC 5wk5dys / TTC#3 3 BFN's and 4th try 10/21/13 = BFP!!!! (Squinter at 10dpi!)
  • EMG_RELEMG_REL Posts: 2,379
    edited November -1
    H's Pap takes him to their local YMCA on Tuesday and Thursday mornings for 30 minutes and has been doing so since he was five months old. As some PP mentioned, they do a lot of singing, dancing, floating, and that sort of thing. H is also a fish. In fact, no matter where we are, if there is some sort of fountain or aquarium or pond, he will literally try to dive in!
  • mommylovemommylove Posts: 1,582
    edited November -1
    We take the Y swim lessons and love them for what they offer. Seb is super comfortable in water and always has been. He also jumps in on his own now for Mom or Mommy to catch him. For us it was more about teaching him to be comfortable and to have some fun!
    October 2014


  • ShannyShanny Posts: 2,456
    edited November -1
    Here is the problem with typical Y or other type "swimming" lessons. Most parents want their kids to have a certain "comfort level" and enjoy the water. These lessons provide that. I call it confidence without competence. If you aren't going to do ISR where a child learns to float first (aka save their lives) then swim, I personally would rather have a child who was terrified of the water. Even a 3+ year old child who can "swim" will NOT fall in a pool and calmly swim to the side before panicking and drowning unless they are trained to float. It won't save a toddler who falls face first in to a bucket of water or toilet but as far as any pool or body of water it is the most amazing thing you will ever see. I'm kind of biased because Kate almost drown at 17 months. Then she learned to swim at 18. Best money ever spent.
  • ZenZen Posts: 2,942
    edited November -1
    Shanny wrote:
    Even a 3+ year old child who can "swim" will NOT fall in a pool and calmly swim to the side before panicking and drowning unless they are trained to float.

    That's my personal soapbox! People think teaching their babies and toddlers to swim prevents drowning. It doesn't. It teaches swimming! There is a point when reason and common sense override panic and a child who knows how to swim will be able to make it to safety if they fall in the water. But I wouldn't count on it for kids under age 6!
  • pbpb Posts: 83
    edited November -1
    Regardless of the child's ability of swimming, kids need adult supervision around water at all times. I can tell you Beckham falls in the pool all the time and he is as calm as can be and he just swims to the side-he has been able to do this since he was 8 months old. Because of ISR he can swim fully dressed with shoes and a winter coat-most children drown fully dressed and in during non swimming months. Being comfortable in water without to save their own lives is a disaster waiting to happen. I agree with Shanny, I much rather have my kid terrified of water rather than being comfortable without the ability!!!
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