When can my child start learning how to swim? It’s a question we get a lot here at Goldfish. Over the years, we’ve helped hundreds of thousands of children learn how to be safer in and around the water, including infants as young as four months old.
In honor of Baby Safety Month, we asked three moms to share why they decided to enroll their little ones in swimming lessons from a young age, and the extraordinary results they’ve seen since diving into classes at Goldfish Swim School.
MEET KIMMY, CAROLINE AND JANA
Whenever we hear the tragic news of another child losing their life to drowning, our hearts sink. Taking the lives of three US children every day, drowning is the number one cause of accidental death for children under the age of four—and the second leading cause of death for kids 5-14.
Kimmy, like many parents, is well aware of the statistics surrounding drowning and understands just how much of an impact swimming lessons can have when it comes to drowning prevention.
“I wanted my kids to learn how to swim because I know someone who lost their two-year-old to an accidental drowning and it just broke my heart,” she told us. “Water safety is so important! At any moment, anything can happen. If a child knows how to flop onto their back and float, they are able to get above water and things will end differently than what they could have had the child not been taught that technique.”
Caroline knows firsthand how important water safety is! When she was around the age of three, she herself had a scary experience with water where she almost drowned. It was at that point her parents enrolled her in swimming lessons—an opportunity she wants to ensure her children have, as well.
“Water safety is important to me because if my children don't know how to swim, they could possibly drown,” Caroline mentioned. “I think it is a great skill to teach the kids at a young age. Not only how to swim, but the safety behind swimming.”
Jana agrees, stating “Swimming is one of those skills that when developed correctly can have a profound lifelong impact on an individual.”
As a former competitive swimmer, Jana started swimming when she was just two years old. Now, two of her children are taking lessons at Goldfish Swim School - Cary.
When we asked Jana why water safety was so important, she had this to share: “It establishes a level of comfort between the swimmer and the water...It is the foundation that everything else is built off, and the sooner a child learns it the easier it is for them to adapt.”
Later, she went on to add, “I don't just see the water safety skills that are developed at a young age, but rather I see the lifelong journey that swimming can take you on. When starting out learning how to swim is focused primarily on making sure that children can develop a comfortable relationship with the water. Then it is about learning how to enjoy the water, to be able to jump in and out, and swim along with friends at the beach or backyard BBQ's. From there it can be a bridge into competitive sports that can help create further bonds with teammates and a way to help get into a college of choice. It also provides a skill that opens up future job opportunities as a lifeguard or a swim instructor during summer breaks. It is also a low impact way to exercise that can follow them well into their later years.”
Focused on ensuring their children understand how to be safe in the water, all three moms have enrolled their young children in swimming lessons at Goldfish.
When we asked what they enjoyed most about their experience thus far, Kimmy said, “Everything! The teachers at Goldfish Swim School - Winter Park are so sweet and really enjoy their jobs. Plus, my kids love them and look forward to attending every week. When my kids are excited when I mention that it’s swim class day, I know we have found the right spot—especially when it comes to my 18-month-old who hated water when we first started a month ago.”
Jana mentioned the progressive learning program and attentiveness of the instructors. “Each of my children were assessed differently and placed with instructors that could help with their unique needs at a pace they could be comfortable with. We couldn't be happier with the results and look forward to bringing our third child in when we can,” she stated.
Caroline, whose kids recently started Mini 2 classes at Goldfish Swim School - Roswell Village, talked about how important it was that her children would be in lessons with a group of kids similar in age so they felt comfortable in class.
WHAT YOU CAN DO TO ENSURE YOUR LITTLE ONE IS SAFER IN AND AROUND THE WATER
Have you been thinking about signing up for swimming lessons, but unsure whether your child is ready or where to start? Our good friend Dr. Molly, a board-certified pediatrician with Birmingham Pediatrics + Wellness Center, recommends talking to your pediatrician.
Thanks to this mom, drowning awareness and prevention is now a common conversation in pediatrician offices throughout our country. The American Academy of Pediatrics even updated their policy statement regarding drowning prevention, stating that swim lessons are beneficial for children starting around age 1, and may lower drowning rates. Children even younger can benefit from them too, of course, but once babies are a year old the benefits grow, and water safety skills start to become engrained.
Should you have any questions about water safety, swim lessons at Goldfish, or what you can do to get your little one more comfortable with the water, we’re also here to help!
READY TO ENROLL YOUR MINI ME IN MINI CLASSES AT GOLDFISH?
At Goldfish Swim School, our Mini classes provide a gentle introduction to the water and are a wonderful way for parents to bond with their little ones. Using The Science of SwimPlay, we help our swimmers learn important water safety skills, like how to roll over and float on their backs and how to climb out of a pool safely should they accidentally fall in. So while we’re focused on the serious stuff, your family can focus on the fun.
With more than 100 locations across North America (and growing!), we’re on a mission to provide children with life-saving skills...and parents peace of mind!
Ask your local Goldfish Swim School whether they offer free trial classes for new members so you can test the waters for yourself, and see what the Golden Experience is all about.