Do you have questions? The video you should start with, how to teach a baby to swim, the purpose of goggles? Read through our FAQ page and your questions will be answered.
What video should I start with?
You should start by utilising the video resource that relates to your child’s age e.g.
- If your child is 17 months old, choose the 12-18 month Online Training Module.
- If your child is 4+ you can then select a swimming stroke that you would like information on e.g. Freestyle.
Each module runs through the entire teaching progression.
How do I view the videos I have purchased?
Once you purchase a product you can view your product by logging in via the home page www.worldwideswimschool.com or through a link supplied in your purchase confirmation email.
What age can my baby start swimming?
- We believe the best time to start formal learn to swim lessons is at 4 months of age. By four months parents are relaxed handling baby, the baby has good neck control and baby is interested in new and exciting situations.
- We encourage parents to start informal swimming lessons from birth.
- During bath time lessons parents can introduce baby to the conditioning process that we use to teach the baby breath control on command. If you haven’t started early with your child don’t worry.
- Regular exposure to the water is the key in teaching children to swim.
Why do I need to wear a t-shirt in the pool?
- Wearing a loose t-shirt in the water will give your baby something to grip and hold.
- This encourages independence and maintains baby’s grasp reflex.
- This independence may one day save your baby’s life.
What is the purpose of a coloured plastic cup?
- Cups are important as they allow us to continue the conditioning process we use in the bath in the pool.
- There is no chance of a plastic cup breaking in the pool.
Why do I need coloured toys?
Toys are incorporated into the lesson to make it fun and stimulating. Remember toys should have a swimming related purpose.
- Balls: Large colourful balls are perfect for stimulation and great for babies to chase when doing assisted and unassisted kicking. Balls of different textures, hard, soft or rippled increase stimulation.
- Rattles: Rattles are ideal to distract baby if they ingest water or get upset in the pool. If baby cries during the lesson calm them while in the pool. If parents get out of the pool, the baby will associate crying with getting out of the pool.
- Watering cans: By pouring water we can excite and stimulate baby’s senses. This helps them relax and builds their confidence around water.
Does my child need to wear goggles?
- Goggles are not a necessity, however, they may help if children have sensitive or sore eyes.
- With goggles, it is important that children do not become reliant on them. This means leaving goggles at home every second week or only allowing children to wear goggles for half the lesson.
- Remember children need to learn to swim without goggles for safety reasons e.g. if they fall in.
What can I do to stop my baby from crying when they are at the pool?
- Force and fear have no place in the teaching of swimming and water safety. Therefore if your child is crying and upset when performing specific swimming skills eg during back floating, stop immediately.
- Always try to determine what is making the child upset. Are they hungry? Are they tired? Are they cold? Did they swallow some water? Once you know what the problem is then it is a lot easier to fix it. For instance you may simply need to feed them at a suitable time before they have their lesson or you may need to put a sun shirt on the baby to keep them warm.
- Another way to stop a baby crying is through distraction. Toys are excellent stimulants and great distractions for babies. Noise is also great for distraction e.g. tapping a cup on the side of the pool. Importantly talking, soothing and reassuring your baby is vital for them to feel comfortable and at ease.
- Finally if your baby cries avoid getting out of the water. Try to comfort the baby while still in the pool. If you get out of the pool every time they baby cries then they are going to associate being upset with getting out of the pool.
What do I do if my child is terrified of the water?
First and foremost you need to determine what is frightening your child:
- Have they had a bad experience?
- Have you unintentionally scared them (e.g. saying things like “don’t go near the pool edge you’ll hurt yourself”)?
The importance of your child feeling into control:
- One of the most common reasons for children to become scared is lack of control.
- For a child to be in control in the water they need shallow water.
- They need to be able to either sit on a ledge or stand up on the bottom of the pool by themselves. When they are doing this they are in control.
- If you are holding your child in deep water they are not in control, you are. Therefore playing in a pool that is shallow or on a ledge is essential for the frightened beginner.
Build up their confidence:
- Once they have built up their confidence in the shallow you can gradually introduce them to the deeper water.
- This can be done through reassuring your child that you are there with them and through setting small tasks for your child to accomplish. For example, letting them play on the ledge and then saying let’s go and touch the lane rope (out in the deep) and then we’ll come straight back and play on the ledge. Slowly but surely your child will build confidence.
- Remember if your child is frightened to go very slowly as all it takes is patience and time with frightened children. Regular exposure is also very important for the frightened beginner. Parents should commit to taking their child to the pool on consecutive days until they observe their child relaxing in the environment.