I read an article just a couple of days ago about children not being able to swim by the time they left primary school and I decided that this would be great for me to discuss as a blog post because I have first-hand, experience of this.

Just to clarify, I could not swim when I left primary school.  All three of my children, aged 11, 9, and 5 attend swimming lessons and have been for around 16 months. My daughter left primary school in July 2016 and could only swim as a result of these private lessons.  They all get half-an-hour each week and it costs me £16 each per month.  I know that this is a lot of money in theory because I have to pay £16 X 3 because I have three children (that’s £48), however, if you divide it by four weeks, it’s about £4 per lesson per child.

 

First of all, I want to tell you what I get for my money…

  • They get a qualified swimming instructor that teaches them to swim and breathe correctly.
  • The follow an approved programme of ASA Stages.
  • They get passes for the local leisure centre, and that means they can actually go and swim for free at any time (this usually costs £2.10 per hour).
  • They learn a little bit of theory at each lesson about safety in and around the pool.

 

So what prompted me to pay for swimming lessons for my children? 

Maybe it was quite naive of me, but when my son had been completing swimming lessons at school and told me he could swim I believed him.  He could swim – he showed me!  So I allowed him into the swimming baths without his armbands.  He was jumping in with his friend and launched himself to the centre of the pool and couldn’t touch the floor.  He panicked and started shouting ‘help me!’  Of course, I was close by with my little one so I stuck him on my back and swam to him – the lifeguard clearly didn’t want to get in the pool as he was leaning over, but I must stress that my son wasn’t sinking – he was simply panicking and shouting whilst treading water because he couldn’t touch the bottom.

The fact he wasn’t drowning and a woman next to him passed him to me in an attempt to calm him didn’t stop it from being embarrassing on my behalf.  I should have checked he was confident in the water and I should have made sure he knew what to do – how to swim after you jump in and can’t touch the bottom.  I also thought of what danger he could have been in as he was panicking.  I made him wear his armbands as a safeguard when jumping in.  I’m not the strongest swimmer myself but his dad is brill so I told him his dad would work with him on our Summer holiday to help him.  I had to fill an accident form out in relation to the whole incident and I felt like a bad parent.

His dad did do work with him on holiday, but I was still apprehensive.  I observed my daughter and discovered that at 10 years old, she couldn’t swim either and was, in fact, walking along the bottom of the pool.  We didn’t go swimming very often so I hadn’t really noticed before as when we did go swimming it was usually to have fun on holiday and not to necessarily swim.  Enough was enough and I decided to enrol them in swimming lessons.  My youngest was 3 and there was no way this was going to happen to him too.  He could enrol on a ducklings class and I had to go in the pool with him until he progressed to the last stage.

16 months later, my eldest two are in the bigger pool, can dive, swim on top and under the water, even when they can’t touch the bottom and they breathe properly whilst swimming.  My youngest child has progressed into the 1st level class (what his sister and brother were in the previous year) and can swim under water.  They all love swimming and are much more confident.

 

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Finally, after my experience over the last 16 months, here are my top five reasons why I think swimming lessons are a good investment…

  1. Swimming can be a life-saving skill – it can save your own life or the life of another.
  2. Swimming keeps you fit as it’s a sport that encourages the use of a lot of your body’s muscles.
  3. Swimming lessons have built up my children’s confidence in the water. This ultimately means more enjoyment for the family!
  4. From my point of view, as a parent, I feel less nervous (although I still keep a close eye on them) when we go to swimming pools and they go down water slides as it always used to worry me. This means we can relax a little more as adults.
  5. Swimming lessons have taught my children a lot about safety in water and at poolside, like not running and getting into the pool safely etc…

 

I will continue these lessons for as long as I have to, plus they are in a routine of going every week now – practice makes perfect!

 

Can your child swim? Do you think every child should be able to swim when they leave primary school? Do you think swimming lessons are a good investment? Maybe you have a different view – are they reasonably priced or expensive? 

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17 thoughts on “5 Reasons Why I think Swimming Lessons for my Kids are a Good Investment

  1. You’re so right. I’m amazed at how many people can’t swim and it horrifies me. There’s so many water related dangers around. I admit if there’s a string current there’s nothing you can do about that but if a child falls into water it’s a good start if they can tread water and shout for help.

    Sally @ Life Loving

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    1. It certainly is – plus it’s given them confidence too! I agree in currents there isn’t a lot that can be done but at least we’re giving them a chance! Thanks for stopping by Sally,

      Janet
      #AnythingGoes

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  2. Swimming lessons really are one of the best investments for your kids. And you can start at the age of 7 months and continue when they are older. We have great experience with lessons and not regret one penny. 🙂 #AnythingGoes

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    1. I agree. You can certainly take them from so young now but I didn’t actually realise that you could. I’m glad you’ve had some good experiences too! It’s also such good exercise 🙂

      Thanks for linking up to #AnythingGoes

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Of course – you just can’t be in several places at once and children don’t see the danger! At least this is raising some awareness of safety too – obviously they don’t listen about safety from their parents’ but I mean when their swimming coach tells them, it’s gospel!

      Thanks for commenting and linking up to #AnythingGoes
      🙂

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    1. It’s great you have a pool and that they were swimming early! You are right, we aren’t always there and at least they will have the skills and a chance if they ever find themselves in a dangerous water situation.

      Thanks for linking up to #AnythingGoes

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    1. That sounds amazing! I wish I had but my Mum always told me she swam like a brick and has never had the confidence to try to learn. I’m not brilliant so I want the children to be better (of course)! 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by and linking up!

      🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Swimming is such an important skill to have. Luckily, hubby, his sister and his dad are avid swimmers and are looking forward to teaching Ben. (also saves me trying as I have super long hair and hate the aftercare as i swear it takes longer to sort my hair than i actually spent swimming! haha

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    1. Oh tell me about it! I can’t stand the water up my nose but my hubby is a fantastic swimmer and the children are starting to be more like him. I can swim but I hate being under the water so I tend to swim with my head held up. It’s no good me showing them as my technique for breathing is all wrong because I don’t stick my face in. Swimming can take so much out of your hair. We read somewhere that pouring bicarbonate of soda and water mixture over it when you first get out of the pool and enter the shower is good to remove the chlorine and keep hair healthy.

      Thanks for stopping by and for linking up to #AnythingGoes

      Liked by 1 person

  4. My little man has been going swimming with his Dad but has never had proper lessons but it’s something we are keen to do. I find it quite surprising that the children don’t learn properly at school these days. After all, this is where I learnt and even completed my bronze and silver survival awards. What a shame it’s not done like that anymore. #anythinggoes

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    1. I know – I just assumed they could, but it seems that was really naive on my behalf. I was also talking to the swimming teacher at the secondary school who also told me that my daughter’s school only currently offers lessons when they are in year 9 – she is in year 7. When I was in senior school we had it a whole term, once every school year.

      Thanks commenting and for linking up to #AnythingGoes

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  5. Your blog just doesn’t want to hear what I have to say today. LOL. Let’s try this again.
    I think swimming is an important life skill for EVERYONE to have. My children all learned exceptionally early and it’s such a huge peace of mind for us as parents. Great post!

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    1. So true! It’s certainly important and I certainly feel more at ease!

      Glad you were able to comment lol – thanks for stopping by.

      Janet

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