Most babies love water. Not really surprising, it was their habitat for the first 9 months. Bath time doesn’t only wash away the acids of wet diapers from their bums and milk traces from their faces. It also helps them to relax.
Every baby is born with a couple of amazing reflexes that potentially makes him an excellent swimmer, right from the start. When you expose your baby to more than just bathing during the first months, and let her experience the joy of swimming all by herself, you will not only have fun in the swimming pool together, but reap the benefits later.
Babies and toddlers that aren’t afraid of water, and know how to float on their backs to catch a breath, are less likely to drown. They don’t panic if they fall into the pool, so they can act.
In Holland, you can start baby swimming classes from as early as 3 months, though many parents wait till their baby is 6 months old. Water temperature should be at least 30 degrees Celcius, and the instructor should be certified to work with babies. Watch how much joy these babies have, swimming in deep water with their parents:
There are special classes for babies and toddlers, to train them to rescue themselves if they fall in a pool or pond. Ironically, these survival techniques work in deep water, not in a shallow swimming pool; in shallow water, they cannot float and rotate.
Babies can drown in ankle deep water… Their motoric skills are not developed enough to get back to a sitting position when they slip!
To see for yourself how a baby can survive a fall in the pool watch this video:
Baby swimming classes are a joyful way of training your child how to act in water. Nevertheless, children playing in water need to be observed constantly, no matter how happy and confident they are. Every year there are children drowning at home, because their parents left the bath room or the garden to answer a phone call or to open the front door…
Never ever leave your child alone in the bath or the inflatable swimming pool in the back yard, not even for 2 minutes!
Summer Water Fun should be the start of many happy summer memories, not the tragic end of it. Don’t count on your ears to alarm you; children that are drowning are very quiet, most likely you won’t hear anything. You need to observe them ánd know the signs that you are looking for:
Did you know that drowning children are quiet? It’s not like in the movies, with a lot of screaming, splashing and drama. Quite a lot of children drown while their parents are watching them, but don’t recognize the signs of drowning! Read all about it here:
Drowning doesn’t look like drowning
Now that I warned you for the potential dangers of water, let the holidays begin! Most public swimming pools make your baby wear a swimming diaper, to prevent accidents. You better come prepared! Do you like to swim with your baby or toddler?
Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”