Adults are role models for children. So if you enjoy swimming,
chances are your children will, too. If you can't swim, don't
let that influence your children. Enrol them in swimming
lessons now, and think seriously about
getting lessons yourself. You'll be missing out if you can't enjoy
the water with your children.
1 in 3 children say swimming is their favourite family
activity. So when you take them swimming, remember it's a fun
time. It's not about learning technique - leave that to the
lessons. You can boost your children's confidence in the water by
having fun and playing games.
- I can't swim. How can I help my child?
You're never too old to learn so find out about lessons in your
local pool. But, in the meantime, don't put off going to the
swimming pool with your child. It's a safe environment with
lifeguards on duty all the time. And there are fun games you
can play with you child in the shallow end.
- Why do we need to shower before using the
It's essential that people using a swimming pool have high
standards of hygiene so that swimming in pool water remains a
healthy experience for everyone. It's not a subject that is
discussed much but you can help by encouraging children to use the
toilet and shower before entering the pool. And remind them never
to use the pool as a toilet!
- Does my child need to wear goggles?
No. In fact some swimming teachers believe it is important for
children to get used to water splashing on their faces and to be
able to open their eyes underwater without goggles on. Others think
that wearing googles gives children more confidence and reduces eye
irritation from the pool water. Of course, should children fall
into water as an accident they are unlikely to be wearing googles
and will have to cope with getting water in their eyes. Read
detailed guidance from Swim Wales.
- Can my child wear armbands in the swimming
As a general rule, buoyancy aids such as arm bands, swim belts,
woggles, floats and SwimFins, can help children feel more confident
in the water, as long as they are appropriate to the child's size
and level of skill. Ideally, buoyancy aids that enable the child to
obtain a horizontal body position in the water and use both arms
and legs to create movement through the water are encouraged. It's
always worth checking what's allowed in a particular swimming pool,
as different venues have different policies regarding the use of
certain buoyancy aids.
- My child is disabled. What opportunities does he have
to go swimming?
Everyone can take part in swimming. In fact people with physical
disabilities may feel a sense of freedom in the pool as the water
supports them. Swimming can also help children with special needs
to develop social skills. It's important to get swimming lessons
for any child as a first step. Find lessons near
- I'm worried about my daughter going swimming because
she has asthma.
Swimming is one of the best forms of exercise for people with
asthma, especially children, as it is less likely to cause asthma
symptoms. This is because, when you're swimming, you are breathing
in air near the surface of the water that is warmer and more humid
than normal air. Swimming training can increase the volume of the
lungs as well as helping to develop good breathing techniques. It's
a fun way of children keeping fit. It's important to get advice
from your doctor before starting a swim programme if you get asthma
symptoms during or after exercise, as this could be
- How many children can I take into the swimming
If you want to take two or more children swimming, check the
rules of that specific swimming pool before setting out. Each pool
has its own admission policy which takes into account the
assessment of risks at that venue. The Chartered Institute
for the Management of Sport and Physical Activity (CIMSPA), the
UK's professional body for sport and physical activity management,
states provided the children are in a non-swimmer area of
reasonably shallow water and can swim, or are wearing approved
armbands, it is likely that one adult can safely look after either
two children, where one or more is under the age of three, or three
children, aged four to seven-years-old.
- At what age can my son go swimming with his
friends, without an adult?
Contact the swimming pool and check its admission policy, as
each pool varies.