Are you giving some deep thoughts to introducing your baby to a swimming class? If the answer is yes, then you will find this article really helpful. Swimming is a great physical activity that comes as a package of fun and good health being a very rare combination your baby can find in the first years of life.
I have seen many parents doubting the choice of enrolling their baby for swimming for some reasons like security and proper guidance. There’s no need to get worried if you are cautious about certain crucial aspects.
Before plunging into the depth of the topic let me remind you that your baby may not become a super swimmer until it is two or three years old. The child may like the water but may not co-operate to the fullest in the initial stage. Give the baby some time to get used to the water so that he becomes relaxed and confident. Be open for this and make the time worth-while with some fun activities in the water.
Age factor must not become a barrier. It is for you to decide when the baby must try on swimming. Health experts pose no objection in a baby’s swimming activity at an early age but I would suggest that you wait until your baby gets few months old, like four to five months.
This is when the baby will have their immunity developed to the fullest. Noisy surrounding may startle the baby so it is safe introduce him or her to the pool noise only after your baby gets few months old.
I don’t think that swimming costumes are compulsory for babies in some pools but some insist that they should have one on. So, better have one with you.
Consider swim nappies as a good buy. Swim accessories like water wings are not suitable for babies younger than a year. There are other suitable accessories available for the kids which may be suggested by the instructor. Find out whether the swimming pool has necessary amenities for child care such as pushchair, changing table and playpen.
( Photo by FrogMiller )
Carry with you a warm bottle to feed the baby after the swim, a towel with a hood, a snack as swimming may leave the baby famished, playthings and books, a nappy bag and some bath toy of the baby.
Get the baby used to the water and let them build the thought that bathing time is a fun time. Splash some water gently on the baby’s body or lay him on his back and move him back and forth.
Pool selection is important, the least crowded it is the better it is for you and the baby. If you are uncomfortable going alone get a friend to come with you. A friend by your side will keep you and the baby relaxed. Remember that it is a good idea to go down to the pool with the baby and have maximum fun with the water toys and bubble blowing activities.
The last but not the least you should check the pool for the safety aspects. The temperature should be between 84 degrees F and 86 degrees F.
Start off with a 10 minutes session and slowly extend the time later. If he shivers get him out and wrap him gently. Do not take the baby for swim if he has a cold. Make sure that the chlorine does not cause skin problem.
These small but significant safety measures are crucial to give your baby a fantastic experience.