Your baby was totally immersed in fluid in the womb for nine months so it seems natural that they have an affinity with water. Whether it is in the bath, at the pool or playing in a paddling pool, water holds a fascination for young children and it is one place where they can be free to enjoy their full range and scope of movement without being tied down by gravity. So, they develop from day 1!
Whether you are holding your child or they are moving independently, in water they have freedom to move; your role is to support them rather than holding them tightly. Swimming with your baby is as much of a new experience for you as your baby. However, we know this can be an anxious time for you. The important thing to think about is that your baby does not know any different – so, ask questions, voice any concerns, talk to your baby at all times, relax and enjoy the whole experience and learn together and learn together.
All babies cry; crying is communicating and might just be a hungry cry, I’m tired or I would like your attention so please interact with me! Babies may cry in the pool or in the bath but they also cry on dry land too. Be prepared to try new experiences more than once; quite often you may feel more relaxed because you know what you are doing and your baby will pick up on this and relax too.
There are so many good experiences for you both in a pool. Water is supportive so you can float and relax with your baby. Babies will kick in water because they can feel it which strengthens their leg muscles ready for crawling and walking. You can practise spatial skills which helps with rolling and standing up and allowing them to taste the water leads to bubble blowing and thus, control of their breath. This is a place where you can spend time together uninterrupted by technology, where the nearly skin to skin contact promotes and enhances bonding. For toddlers it is a place of imagination to live being a shark or mermaid
So, there is so much more to taking your baby swimming. On the one hand baby swimming is the starting point for the all the strokes they will learn if they want to swim and on the other, it provides you and your baby the chance to explore the new, yet familiar medium of water. Swimming is a life skill and will open up the world of other water activities as your child grows. It also promotes confidence and independence which will transfer into other aspects of their lives – so take the plunge and join us at Water Babies.
Classes in Buckingham and surrounding area:
Bucks Best Western (Monday, Tuesday & Thursday)
Nuffield Health Aylesbury (Wednesday & Thursday’s)