Drowning is the leading cause of unintentional death for children ages 1-4. Starting swim lessons ensures your child knows the dangers of water, where safe places are, and teaches them survival skills allowing them to self-rescue in case they were to fall into a body of water. This is the number one reason to begin swim lessons, to make sure your child is as safe as possible.
Don’t Wait Until They Are Older
Swim lessons may seem like something to do when your child is older. However, the American Academy of Pediatrics now recommends starting swim lessons when your child is one-year-old. In giving them the life-saving skill of survival swim, you are lowering their risk of drowning and becoming a statistic.
Starting lessons at a young age is also great for introducing the water to your child. When kids are older may come into their first swim lesson with anxiety, low confidence, and a fear of the water. Overcoming these feelings can sometimes be a long process. Eventually they do become comfortable in the water, but starting swim lessons at an earlier age makes this process much easier.
One-year-old babies do not typically come into lessons with a fear of the water. They have not learned the dangers of water, so they do not have any feelings towards it yet. This is why it is a great time to introduce them in a safe and fun way.
In order to be safe in the water you must be comfortable and confident. Introducing one-year-old babies to the water is right step forward in building this confidence. They come into lessons with no previous fear or angst and they learn much more quickly. A water confident child is also less likely to panic when they fall into a body of water unexpectedly and be able to use the lifesaving skills they have learned.
Peace of mind
Once your little one begins walking, they discover a whole new perspective of the world. They are naturally curious and will get into anything and everything. This is another reason to begin swim lessons early. Most drowning incidents happen when children are not expected to be swimming and somehow get access to water. OSA teaches their students to close their mouth under water, how to hold their breath, float, and roll onto a float. They learn necessary survival skills that could potentially save their life. Knowing this gives great peace of mind to parents.
There is no need to wait until they are older to begin swim lessons. Learning now could save their life later.
Written by Meagan Rose, OSA Instructor