Jump to content

advice or recommendations for swimming lessons
for a child scared of going under water


  • Please log in to reply
13 replies to this topic

#1 queeney

Posted 08 February 2013 - 05:36 PM

My son is 3.5 and loves water. Loves going in the water, splashing, playing on the steps etc can even blow bubbles with just his lips in the water but is petrified of putting his face under or going on his back.

I had him in lessons at Altone park in Beechboro the class was only four children but i think he needs something one on one. I don't really know what to do i was a fish at his age so can't relate. I don't want to force him but i want to help him to feel secure enough to do it, so I'm wondering if there are any swimming lessons or programmes that focus directly on this issue?

I an north of the river, but open to all suggestions. Or even advice if your little one was similar?

Thanks in advance ladies.

Edited by queeney, 08 February 2013 - 05:40 PM.


#2 jujujulie

Posted 08 February 2013 - 07:36 PM

I used to teach swimming and I would say to wear goggles in the bath and get him to put his goggles on your hand and slowly put hands in water, blow bubbles. Take it slow and lots of praise. Ask what he saw under water etc.

#3 sophiasmum

Posted 09 February 2013 - 08:01 AM

No advice, but I wanted to share experience. My DD(4) started swimming lessons last week & they left going underwater until the end of the class. There was 1 girl who started crying & was obviously scared to do it so they didn't push her. She jumped in but kept her head above water.

My DD doesn't like going on her back, she'll do it but you can tell she's not comfortable with it. The teacher said to get her used to it by laying her head on your shoulder & talking in her ear telling her to relax so she floats her body like seaweed.

It's hard to watch them when you know they are not enjoying something, but perhaps when he is a bit older he will be less afraid?

#4 Jupiter

Posted 09 February 2013 - 11:21 AM

My daughter was like this and I ended up leaving her to deal with it at her own pace.

She has just mastered it during vacation swimming lessons, aged 5 and a half. original.gif

These lessons at St Mary's Karrinyup look good: http://www.swimstruct.com.au/swimstruct_cl...ns_bookings.htm

I've taken my kids to Newman College Churchlands for vacation swimming for years. There's never been more than two kids per class although the maximum is four.

#5 Aquarium

Posted 09 February 2013 - 11:30 AM

What's he like in the bath? Are you able to pour water over his face? This should be your starting point, with a small cup and build up to larger amounts. Once he's comfortable with having a large cup poured down the front of his face, he'll be ready for the pool.

#6 queeney

Posted 09 February 2013 - 04:20 PM

Thanks for the replies Ladies. I tend to agree i think he just needs time to mature and get used to it and understand the concept a bit more.

He doesn't mind water in his head in the shower or bath, but needs a towelimmediatelly to dry it. I just keep reassuring him that water on his face is fine and have started taking a little longer each time to pass him a towel, only a few seconds, but he is dealing with it ok.

#7 queeney

Posted 09 February 2013 - 11:27 PM

So, just thought ild pop in and update from tonight swim at my parents. I stopped at the chemist and got him the ear plugs and band and he was so excited and proud to show pop pop his Band that would help him swim.

I started really slowly asking him to do little things (as i have in the past with no willingness at all) and he started by tilting his head to each side putting his ears in. Slowly slowly and he actually swam with his swim vest on and noodle in a 'u' shape under his arms as we had tried and tried to get him to do in his swimming lessons. He only swam about a metre unassisted from me to the steps. He did this twice and i was so proud!! I don't know if his ears were the issue or the ear band just gave him the courage, but i don't care!! Lol.

I'm going to keep encouraging him to feel comfortable while in my parents pool and maybe look at enrolling him in lessons next term.

Thanks again for your advice and suggestions.

#8 libbylu

Posted 09 February 2013 - 11:31 PM

The best way to get kids through this phase is to get into the pool with them and play together on a regular basis.  They are way braver when you are right there for them.  Preferably when the pool is quiet and you can relax and have a lovely cuddly time together. With gentle encouragement and mummy right at hand it doesn't take long.

#9 Overtherainbow

Posted 09 February 2013 - 11:58 PM

I'll go against majority.  DS was petrified of all water.  Bath, pool, shower, etc.  Even being in a room with water would have him hysterical.

We got to 3 and ended up just pushing him.  We had a horrible time for several months.  Swimming twice per week in lessons and once for a play swim.  We did make him go under once per lesson.  We rewarded him for doing it and praised him majorly.

4 years later and he's a fish.  He talks about when he used to be scared of water and finds it strange that he was scared and now loves it so much.  He's becoming a strong swimmer and can dive, flip and bombie with the best of them.

We found more frequent swimming made a huge difference.  Once per week wasn't enough for him.  I hated it, his teachers hated it.  He has a wonderful relationship with those teachers still and he always finds them to say hello when we go to lessons.

ETA We always used goggles and it's only recently he is comfortable spending some time without them.

Edited by Overtherainbow, 10 February 2013 - 12:05 AM.


#10 Sheep

Posted 10 February 2013 - 01:43 AM

Mine hated it too, we just let him take it at his own pace, lots of encouragement, I think he was around 4 or 5 when he started to be comfortable with it all the time. He's 9 now and loves swimming. I think forcing them is a bit dangerous and could really backfire on you, keep it fun!


#11 75etd

Posted 10 February 2013 - 05:19 AM

The only thing that got my DS 4.5 and DD 2.5 to put their heads under was having some older kids come over and they were just in admiration of all the fun things it lead to-jumping in, swimming with goggles, etc. In the two weeks since this happened my DD's swimming has advanced more than in swimming lessons over the previous 2 months

#12 mumto3princesses

Posted 10 February 2013 - 07:53 AM

With DD#2 it just took time.

I made sure her teacher didn't force her. I disagree with dunking etc. But her teacher was really good. Just encouraged her slowly. It did take her a very long time though as DD#2 was petrified of the water. Her twin sister on the other hand had no fear. First just paddles etc with no screaming, then chin on the water, then can you just put your mouth in the water and blow bubbles, then can you put any more of your face in the water and so on.

DD#2 is now 9yrs old and still does have a little fear. Its not noticeable but her swimming teacher can see it and told me she can still tell she is a nervous swimmer. She swims laps of the 25m pool though and if you didn't know her you probably wouldn't know she is nervous.

#13 liveworkplay

Posted 10 February 2013 - 08:20 AM

QUOTE
I don't know if his ears were the issue or the ear band just gave him the courage, but i don't care!! Lol.


My 3.5 yr old hates water in her ears as well. We have maior issues with baths and no way she would ever have a shower. She has been doing lessons for a couple of weeks now and was very very proud of herself last week as she plucked up the courage to duck under the hoop to collect some toys. I just let her initiate it and helped her through.

I am actually not a big one for formal swim lessons for toddlers, the only reason DD3 is going so early is because she has watched her sisters for so long and she kept asking. We always took the kids to the pool and beach at a young age but DD1 didnt start lessons until 5 and she was swimming freestyle a couple of months later. DD2 started at 4 and has taken a lot longer to get at that level but is still ahead of her age group.

I think if you wait until they WANT to learn it is much more successful much more quickly.

#14 queeney

Posted 12 February 2013 - 02:23 PM

Thanks ladies.
liveworkplay i tend to agree. My son and niece did lessons together last year, he was just turned three and she was four and a half. It was both Thier first lessons. The difference between the confidence, understanding and maturity was huge. I think I'll keep doing my own gentle encouragement and look at enrolling him after he's four.




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users

 

The popular baby name from the Rio Olympics

"With a pair of athletes who are not only successful, but seen as great role models – combined with a softer sound – it is like hitting the jackpot."

Toy stuck in baby's throat for two weeks

When Jude Atiga's baby son Laith was struggling to breathe the worried mum called an ambulance.

Mum awarded $20 million over birth power struggle with nurses

As a mother of three, Caroline Malatesta thought she knew what she was letting herself in for when it came to the birth of her fourth baby.

Win a Baby Jogger City Premier for Father's Day

To celebrate Father's Day, one lucky EB fan will win one of their own! Enter Now!

'There's a giant picture of BOOBS but I can not feed my child'

A mum was ushered out of an US department store's underwear section after discreetly breastfeeding her baby.

Why fatherhood scares many dads-to-be

Travis Bull vividly remembers discovering his partner was pregnant for the first time.

Free ticket offer

Pinky Mckay joins us again at the Essential Baby & Toddler Show presented by Blackmores with her expert baby settling advice. Register now for your free ticket.

Warning for pregnant women as flu-related deaths triple

A more than three-fold increase in flu-related deaths has sparked a plea for those with the flu to stay away from vulnerable people.

I'm trying to keep my child-free friends in my life, but it's tough

I tried to prove to my single friends that I was the same I'd always been. But marriage did change me - and motherhood has, too

For the festival lover in all of us

Pre-book & Save 50%. Get your tickets now for Kidtopia Festival. 7-9 October 2016 Parramatta Park, Sydney.

Too many parents still putting babies in unsafe bedding: study

A study found that a whopping 91 per cent of four-week-old babies had been placed in cots with unsafe bedding.

Mum's shock as toddler fat-shamed by internet trolls

When a mother uploaded a cute photograph of her 14-month old child online, she did not expect a swarm of internet trolls to write that her toddler was fat.

How an Aldi staff member made one exhausted mum's day

It was a simple act of kindness, but one that made an exhausted mother's day.

The most awww-worthy celeb baby pics of the week

It's been a pretty cute week on Instagram in terms of celebs relishing their babies.

When 'Just Do It' just doesn't cut it

When even Michelle Bridges admits to struggling with her exercise regime, it's time to accept that having small children can be a legitimate reason for exercise not happening.

What life is really like when you have five kids

Life is cute with one, manageable with three, but at times completely impossible with five.

When no one can pronounce your baby's name

In Wales it's a common name, but over here, it's cause for some confusion.

Dad shares horror tale after Roomba's run-in with dog poop

It's the poop story that's been shared hundreds of thousands of times around the world.

How a homemade wheelchair is giving baby Evelyn freedom

Like all one-year-olds, Evelyn Moore is keen to get moving and explore the world around her. But a battle with aggressive cancer left the little girl paralysed from the waist down.

Single to double pram that folds with seat attached

A pram is a large purchase, and you only want to buy once.

Mum-to-be surprises husband with big news in joy-filled photoshoot

When Bri Dow learnt that she was expecting, she immediately knew she wanted to break the news to her husband Brandon in a special way.

Blake Lively: 'Post-pregnancy slim down pressure is so unfair'

Blake Lively has urged women not to feel pressured to lose weight after pregnancy.

 
Advertisement
 

Top 5 Articles

Advertisement
 
 
 

What's hot on EB

For the festival lover in all of us

Pre-book & Save 50%. Get your tickets now for Kidtopia Festival. 7-9 October 2016 Parramatta Park, Sydney.

Why drinking water can be deadly for babies

H2O is one of the necessities of life, but for babies a seemingly harmless amount of water can be fatal.

5 ways having a baby is different when you have older children

So much parenting advice is geared towards having your first baby, but what's it like having a baby when you already have children?

You can now make your own plush Falkor

Fans of The NeverEnding Story – of which there are certainly plenty – went crazy for these plush Falkors when they first went on sale last year.

Baby steps

10 things that will actually happen after having a baby

I thought I had prepared myself for motherhood. Then my baby girl arrived and knocked everything flat.

Having a baby: expectations vs reality

People love to warn you about what to expect when having a baby, but they can be way off when it comes to the reality.

Are we having fun yet? Thinking positively as a parent

Motherhood is wonderful ... except when it sucks.

The adorable smile of a baby seeing his mum clearly for the first time

There is no doubt seeing their child smile for the first time is an unforgettable moment for parents everywhere.

When breastfeeding doesn't go with the flow

Breast is best, except when it's not. And in our case, it most definitely wasn't.

'If you don't vaccinate your kids you're a bloody idiot'

The photos are heartbreaking and almost too difficult to look at, but Kayley Burke is begging other parents to take notice.

Why pregnant women should eat chocolate

In news that will make expectant mums jump for joy - and reach for a block of Cadbury - scientists have revealed chocolate could provide health benefits during pregnancy.

The baby born with an incredible head of hair

If you're in any way challenged in the follicle department, prepare to feel a jolt of envy - at a two-month-old baby.

The push for Medicare to fund lactation consultants

While meeting with a lactation consultant can make an enormous difference to a new mother, it's not a service that is available through the public health system.

Parents, this is how to cut grapes to avoid choking

One mum has learnt a harrowing lesson about the best way to cut grapes to make it safe for toddlers and little kids to eat.

Three truths about C-section mums

Lately I've been thinking about the caesarean stories and the brave women who birth their children with strength and beauty.

Help! My baby will only sleep in my arms

It's stressful to be the one who is holding your baby most of the day, but it's even more stressful to wonder, 'am I doing something wrong? Or am I creating bad habits?'

 

ENTER NOW

Win one of two Father's Day Gift Packs

Sign up to receive our new Essential Kids announcements emails for a chance to win.

 
Advertisement
 
 
Essential Baby and Essential Kids is the place to find parenting information and parenting support relating to conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids, maternity, family budgeting, family travel, nutrition and wellbeing, family entertainment, kids entertainment, tips for the family home, child-friendly recipes and parenting. Try our pregnancy due date calculator to determine your due date, or our ovulation calculator to predict ovulation and your fertile period. Our pregnancy week by week guide shows your baby's stages of development. Access our very active mum's discussion groups in the Essential Baby forums or the Essential Kids forums to talk to mums about conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids and parenting lifestyle. Essential Baby also offers a baby names database of more than 22,000 baby names, popular baby names, boys' names, girls' names and baby names advice in our baby names forum. Essential Kids features a range of free printable worksheets for kids from preschool years through to primary school years. For the latest baby clothes, maternity clothes, maternity accessories, toddler products, kids toys and kids clothing, breastfeeding and other parenting resources, check out Essential Baby and Essential Kids.