There are many benefits of baby swimming, but here are my top 10 reasons (and a bit more info) on why I believe baby swimming to be an exciting, enriching experience for everyone involved. Not only does it teach vital life skills, but it also enhances the way babies and toddlers learn other skills as well.
It teaches water safety
Tragically, drowning is one of the most common causes of accidental death among children under five. Learning to get to the side, hold on, get out and/or swim could save your child’s life one day, so we teach vital safety techniques from birth.
It’s great for their physical and mental health
Swimming from birth is fantastic for your baby's health& development, and could spark a lifetime’s interest in sport. Each lesson provides a complete physical work-out, strengthening your baby's heart and lungs and in turn aiding development of the brain.
It promotes bonding
Skin-to-skin contact strengthens the bond between you and your child. For parents with more than one child, this may be your one chance in the week to focus purely on your infant.
It boosts confidence
Introducing children to water at a very young age helps prevent a fear of water developing later. Exercises that involve moving independently in water and holding on to the side are wonderful for your baby’s confidence. Many parents also find that handling their baby in water is great for them, too — especially if they’re anxious about water or can’t swim. You’ll be so proud of what your baby can do!
It develops their co-ordination
Being in the water helps improve co-ordination and balance. For example, a 2009 study by the Norwegian University of Science & Technology found that babies who swim have better balance and can grasp objects more easily.
It builds their strength
Buoyancy and water-resistance mean that babies exercise more muscles, more effectively, in water than on land. Finnish research showed that swimming babies crawled later but walked earlier, thanks to their excellent muscle control.
It develops their learning skills
Responding to repetitive voice commands can sharpen your baby’s mental skills and increase their levels of understanding. A German study found that swimming babies had advanced motor development, social skills and intelligence
It enhances their wellbeing
Warm water relaxes your baby, and swimming stimulates their appetite; for you, the good news is improved sleeping and eating patterns!
It provides structure
Weekly swimming classes contribute to structuring your week and your day, providing a regular fun and social activity.
You can start from birth
You don’t need to wait until your baby has had his or her vaccinations before they go swimming (even underwater). My son did his first underwater at 2 days old and started his lessons at just 4 weeks old! After spending 9 months suspended in fluid in the womb, it's not surprising that babies have a natural affinity for water; in fact, floating in a warm pool will feel far more familiar to them than being on dry land.