5 reasons to have your tots dive into swim lessons pronto 6 months ago

5 reasons to have your tots dive into swim lessons pronto

Brought to you by Aura Swim Academy at Aura Leisure Centres.

There's good reason to get your little one swimming when they're still a baby, but of course, there's no time like the present (no matter the age) to start waterproofing our kids.

It's true that babies have two reflexes that help them under the water, but they do not know how to swim. These two reflexes - swimming reflex and dive reflex - enable a baby to move their arms and legs in a swimming motion (if you support them at the surface of the water, holding them tummy-side down) and if supported under the water, they will hold their breath and open their eyes wide.

Although nature has given babies this very cool ability, it's essential that babies, kids and us adults, learn how to swim. The positives are endless, but here's just a few worth thinking about.

1. Reduces the Risk of Drowning

Little ones aged one to four are at the highest risk of drowning - bathtubs cause the highest risk for infants, while young children are most at risk within a swimming pool and older kids are more likely to drown outdoors in the ocean. (HSE)

Of course, there are many factors that can increase a risk of drowning, but undoubtedly, knowing how to swim in the first place, saves lives.

A child that’s used to water will be much less likely to panic if submerged under water unexpectedly - say if a friend pushes them in playfully. The best way to ensure a fear of water never comes about in the first place, is to get your child/infant to swimming lessons as soon as possible.

Six weeks after giving birth, it’s not advised that mum goes into the pool (due to risk of infection) but if there is someone you trust, it could be an idea to let them hold baby carefully in the water, or better still, have them go to baby and parent swim classes.

Aura Swim Academy offers the perfect (and safe) course - Swim Baby. The eight-week course is developed for babies from three to 30 months and each lesson involves 30 minutes of fun. Their highly trained instructors work with parent and baby to ensure everyone feels comfortable and happy in their learner pool.

2. Swimming is Low-Impact

It's a sport you and the kids will always be able to indulge in. It doesn't age discriminate. Our body is around 90 percent buoyant when we're in water up to around our neck. We aren't hitting the ground with all our weight meaning swimming is super for avoiding injury and wear and tear in the long run.

Of course, if we over-do something our bodies will inevitably be injured, but as sports go - it's a goodie.

3. Incredible Life Skills

Kids learn the best life skills - skills that will stand to them forever more. It's more than just swimming - it's the ability to understand the importance of time management, the importance of team work (working to their own best ability, but being able to support others, while knowing they too are capable of achieving their own goals and are pure potential), taking valuable instruction from those highly trained, and boosting their social skills (much easier in a fun learning environment they enjoy).

4. It's a Terrific Workout

Swimming involves moving multiple muscle groups in our body - all strokes involve using different groups. It's a high-intensity, cardio workout meaning plenty of calories are burned away and a healthy, fun lifestyle is promoted from the onset. Swimming also releases endorphins (our happy hormones) improving mood and family/friend relationships.

Aura Leisure Centre, Dundalk

5. Very Cool Opportunities Later in Life

A lot of kids and teenagers who are comfortable in water and are good swimmers after years of going to lessons often take part in a broad range of water sports and might even take on the position of lifeguard during summer months. It opens up another avenue to become passionate about something like surfing, kayaking, sailing and oodles more, making for years well spent, having fun, achieving goals and more.

Ireland's Aura Swim Academy offers free swim assessments to ensure each and every child is enrolled in a class that encourages learning, based on their ability and not age. Instructors are all professionally trained and each course lasts for eight weeks at a time, with a total of 10 levels in each of these courses.

It's never just about learning how to swim, but also giving kids (and adults!) a great understanding of water, building confidence, developing life-saving techniques and having a ball. Best of all, you'll find Aura Swim Academy locations dotted all over the country including Dublin, Dundalk, Leitrim, Navan, Letterkenny, Trim, Tullamore, Grove Island and Yaughal.

Now, to waterproof them for life!

Brought to you by Aura Swim Academy at Aura Leisure Centres.

Aura are taking bookings for the September term of Aura Swim Academy. Assessments can take place during any open swim. Places on the eight week course fill up quickly. For more information visit Aura Leisure online.