View Full Version : What age did you put your child in swimming lessons?

Aqua Motion Int
March 23rd, 2014, 11:31 PM
I personally feel like you can start teaching basic swimming concepts at home starting from infancy to age 3. 3 years old I think is the perfect time to introduce traditional swimming lessons.

Do you guys teach your own children, or use an outside company (YMCA, local program, etc..)? What age did you start your child in swimming lessons?

March 23rd, 2014, 11:50 PM
I taught my girls between 2 and 3 years. I started drown proofing before that.

March 24th, 2014, 11:14 AM
I started with water introduction at 6 months and worked with them through play for years after.
both could swim independently at 4, no float devises and swam on the local country club swim team at age five for fun.
after that my son swam USAS club at age 8 he is now 15 and still swimming competitively and my daughter who's ten swims with the competitve developmental program. Although she can swim all strokes well she has behavioral and learning disabilities that I feel it's better for her just to swim "swim team lite". And so far that where we are at, swimmming wise .

March 24th, 2014, 03:47 PM
I would think between 3 - 5 . At that time they can understand what you are talking about. I know of some parents that start much earlier.

March 24th, 2014, 08:42 PM
I don't remember not being able to swim, so I'd think the earlier you can get them comfortable in a pool or any water, for that matter, the better. I've seen some techniques where kids are taught right off the bat at a year or so, to roll over onto their backs to help them rescue themselves no matter if they fall in or not. IF they roll over, they learn to save themselves until they can get rescued or to the edge of a pool.

March 24th, 2014, 09:05 PM
My kids didn't "learn to swim" until 3, in traditional lessons. But they all have been in water pretty much since they were born, so they are very comfortable and respect the water- which I think is much more important than learning strokes and competing a young age.

Floaties and life vests have their place in learning to swim. We boat a lot, and realized with our oldest that swimming in a vest was much harder for her than swimming without, because she had never worn one other than on the boat. So from then on, we taught all of our girls how to jump off the bow, swim around to the back, and climb up unassisted at around 2 years while wearing a vest. Learning how to properly wear vests and use them is a good thing to teach early as well, if that's a situation your kids will ever be in.

March 25th, 2014, 07:45 AM
We had all of our children in the water at 5 weeks of age. There were enrolled in actual swim classes at the age of 3 at our local YMCA. Before that we did parent tot classes at our YMCA where the parent was in the water and did songs and such to get children use to the water as well as basic safety like the crab crawl on the side, climbing out and teaching baby to stay sitting on the side until asked to get in. I teach swim but I still enrolled my kids in the programs as they do better with a stranger out of parents sight. My kids at the age of 3 were not always happy that were allowed to sink under the water during jump ins but this made them better and realistically most parents would not do this. I would agree that 3 is a great time to get them into lessons.

March 25th, 2014, 12:03 PM
I had them in pools as infants and then at or before 2 with a bubble (and without it too) just letting them doggie paddle before teaching them to swim at about 3 or 4. I liked starting with the bubble as way to gain self-confidence in the water before turning them lose. Others might not like the "crutch" but it worked well for us. In the summers we traveled to the house where my parents retired and they had a back-yard pool and lake, and the kids were in it many hours each day playing and learning to swim. I did work with them early on fr, bk, and br and maybe even a little fly. We started the oldest (boy) in a summer league swim team at about 6 and I think just hanging at the pool and playing with their friends was a great teacher too. A different set of friends than school or the neighborhood and that early socialization played an important role too, I think. My youngest (girl) was so enthusiastic about summer swimming with the team that she jumped in with somewhat older kick boarders at about 3-4 yrs. old.

The oldest is the "ice-breaker" and it is generally a little tougher for them - the younger siblings will follow the oldest. All three of ours swam winter USAS from about 6 thru HS. I pretty much stopped teaching/coaching once they started with coaches.

My experience growing up in the 50s was a little different, but also started out with a summer pool and lessons at about age 5, I think. I didn't like the lessons, but did enjoy the little 10 yard races at the club pool; it wasn't until joining the Y for winter swimming and their classes - pollywog, minnow, blue fish, whatever then eventually on to the team at about 7- 8. That's when i really caught on and started to develop an interest in the sport. I was the oldest and my younger siblings all followed into AAU swimming, and I think had a little easier time with it. There were lots of other people (coaches, parents, and older swimmers) who helped me along the way - that network was a significant factor for both my kids and myself. Good luck!

March 25th, 2014, 12:44 PM
Mom and Dad 'lessons' (for my kids) were just an informal introduction to the water to simply get a general comfort level. Having fun, bouncing around and splashing were all part of the general orientation.

Official organized lessons started at age 6 or 7 and went on until age 9. The Y has the whole guppy through shark progression which makes it fun as the children keep moving higher and higher up the ladder. Then came the swim team (for my youngest) at age 10.

March 25th, 2014, 07:52 PM
My kids were 11 and 9 when we brought them to lessons. The lessons during the following year (2008) motivated me to try, now I'm the only one swimming.

Aqua Motion Int
April 1st, 2014, 01:06 PM
I feel like learning to swim should be something required for children to learn early in school. Something offered by public schools so that children who otherwise wouldn't be able to participate in lessons due to family financial reasons can still learn the life saving skill.

April 1st, 2014, 01:20 PM
I had my daughters in a pool at 6 weeks or so, I think. We had them in 'mommy/daddy/child' lessons soon thereafter and they just kind of moved along the path of lessons from there. It's been 16-18 years, so I cannot exactly recall the details, but do know I held off them swimming their first 400 IM until they were 11 or so - a late mistake, I now realize, I will not let happen to any grandchildren I ever might have :)!

May 19th, 2014, 11:34 AM
My son is 6 months old he has been taken a private lesson for the past 3 months and now can float on his back wearing swimmies and and can swim by himself underwater we would never leave him unattended but I would say to enroll them as soon as you can he loves swimming!

May 20th, 2014, 08:24 AM
Hmmm, let's see. Oh, wait! I don't have kids. Guess I can't post on this dicussion. :agree:

May 21st, 2014, 01:25 PM
We started lessons with the parent at 1.5-2 and our daughter was coming along, but we stopped due to other factors and she kind of went backwards. She's 4 now and more scared to put her face in the water, so I'd like to get her back in lessons as soon as possible.