Learning to swim is an important part of growing up in Australia. It keeps kids safe and active, but did you know it also helps with brain development. The world’s most comprehensive study in early-years swimming was undertaken by the Griffith Institute for Educational Research. The researchers found that children who learn how to swim at a young age are reaching many developmental milestones earlier than the norm.
“As well as achieving physical milestones faster, children also scored significantly better in visual-motor skills such as cutting paper, colouring in and drawing lines and shapes, and many mathematically-related tasks. Their oral expression was also better as well as in the general areas of literacy and numeracy.”
Here are our top 3 tips to ensure kids get the most out of swimming lessons:
1. Regular Lessons
Weekly swimming lessons helps kids to develop strong stroke technique and fundamental skills such as breathing control, whilst building confidence around the water. Regular lessons for kids also takes advantage of the neuroplasticity of their developing brains. The challenge of learning to swim creates a positive learning environment for children to step beyond their comfort zone and – for some – to nurture them through regulating any anxiety they may have in and out of the pool. Weekly encouragement of positive behaviours consolidates the development of emotional neural pathways, supporting their long-term development and happiness.
2. Swim All Year Round
Swimming is not just a summer activity and it should be practiced all year round. A term or two away from lessons can result in the loss of muscle memory, strength, stamina and confidence around the water. Swimming is a key element in the physical domain outlined in The Australian Sports Commission’s newly released Physical Literacy draft. Children need to practice swimming regularly to continue to build their swimming proficiency and to ensure a safe and enjoyable relationship with the water that will last a lifetime.
3. Personalised Approach To Swim Skill And Fitness Development
Every child develops swimming skills and confidence in the water at their own pace. At Artemis Aquatics Swim School, every child has an individualised program designed by their teacher that takes into consideration their personality, learning style and skill level.
Regular attendance to classes allows the teacher to develop a plan for a cohesive skill progression plan for the student, and this approach is strengthened by our program structure. This is a different approach to the traditional “Level Swimming System;” but one that supports each student’s development in a very personalised way until they are ready for a pre-squad and squad program.