Many parents choose to enroll their children in swimming classes to learn to swim. If you have a backyard swimming pool and want to teach your child at home, there are several ways to get started while keeping everyone safe.
Stay Right There
It’s important to stay close to your child as they are learning to swim. By being right there with them in the pool, they can feel safe knowing that nothing bad will happen and you’ll catch them if they start to go underwater. Encourage a young child by letting them lay across your arms to practice kicking and paddling skills. Encourage them to blow bubbles in the water and put their face in to show that it’s okay to go underwater for a few seconds and they will come up fine.
Go at Their Pace
Work at a pace that makes you comfortable and doesn’t scare the child. Some children may pick things up quickly and be swimming in no time. Others may need a whole year of holding on to the edge of the pool and kicking before they ever feel ready to take another step. Respect their pace and encourage every small step along the way. Every child learns at a different pace and swimming is no exception.
Use Teaching Tools
Pick up water wings and paddle boards at a pool store. Goggles may also help children feel more confident in the water. Use the wings starting out with small children so they have some help staying afloat and can begin to understand paddling and kicking. As they get older and their skills improve, change over to the paddle boards. Help them to go around the pool with their arms supported by the board and kicking their legs out behind them. For many children, this will be the final step before they take off swimming.