Five tips for fun baby swimming
Ali Beckman shares her advice on how to make your baby’s swimming sessions extra special.
1. Try to be water confident yourself.
If you aren’t a strong swimmer or if you feel nervous in water, taking your baby swimming is a time to overcome your fears. Stay in the shallow end, don’t panic if you get splashed – be a positive role model for your little one.
2. Take it slowly.
Some of us have little daredevils, others are more cautious. Either way, don’t underestimate the impact of having your face/head under the water for the first time; it can upset even the most boisterous of babies.
3. Encourage mental stimulation alongside the physical
Snap like a crocodile, jump like a frog, go for a ride on a seahorse or swish your fins like a mermaid. Toddlers especially love imaginary play, so don’t hold back!
4. Sing repetitive songs and rhymes in the pool
Repeating a rhyme in the pool is a super effective way to communicate with your baby. The repetition is reassuring and helps them learn. Using the same words to match actions helps them feel more confident as they recognise what will happen next.
5. Support independence as they become more confident
Introduce a float to help them kick their legs. Let them explore and experiment and remember to give positive praise.
What fun swimming games do you play with your baby in the swimming pool?
We asked parents to share their favourite water activities