Who would think a baby swim lessons is an actual thing, and not only that, its quite popular. I discovered swim class for my baby and I and its an absolute blast. Its great fun with lots of bonding and play time and even a little exercise for me. It gets me out of the house and I’ve met a couple other moms with a baby the same age. Most importantly it introduces water and swimming to the baby at an early age, an important skill for when they are older.
First to find a baby swim class you can start by looking online for schedules at your local pool. Mine offered a class specifically for babies 3 months and up and are able to keep their head lifted. Classes run in a group setting for a couple weeks and have a certified instructor. For safety sake, I would advise you to do your research to make sure its a certified class.
I went into the class not knowing what to expect or basic necessities to pack. Swim class for babies is a lot more intensive than I imagined it to be. Listed below is my experience.
Baby swimming lessons essentials
Once signed up for the class, make sure you have your essentials. A swim diaper is a must. I was very surprised how swim diapers fit and felt. I use the Huggies Little Swimmer disposable diaper. The small size 3 works well for my 16lb 6-month-old. They are very thin and form fitting with almost no bulk under his swimsuit. I buy the Huggies Little Swimmer disposable diaper in a pack of 20.
For the baby I like bringing two towels. One to dry him, and then one to put him on to change him on afterwards to keep dry. There is not too many places to put him that isn’t wet in the changing room. Since he can’t stand or sit up on his own yet soft, and dry spaces limited.
Since changing rooms are so wet, its another good idea to bring an extra set of dry clothing. This extra set is in case an article of clothing drops on the ground or comes in contact with a wet towel or suit.
Another tip is to use the family changing room if you have the option. Use the family changing room as they are private, large, and have space for the baby. This includes large changing tables unlike the main male/female changing rooms.
What sort of activities take place in swim class for babies?
Be prepared for many different activities throughout the 30 minute class.
List of activities for baby swimming lessons can include:
- Singing songs that incorporate different swimming moves that help the baby get comfortable with the water. Moves can include splashing, floating, group participation, and lifting the baby in and out of the water
- Swimming towards floating objects with parents support.
- Sitting on the edge of the pool and pushing off into the water. Older babies push themselves off and into their parents hands. My 6 month old gets my hands on him at all times and is gently guided from the ledge into the water.
- Also, the babies will be getting their ears in the water. As always, guided by the parent.
- Blowing bubbles (for the older babies). Mom or dad demonstrate to the younger babies
- There will be back floating and front floating. Guided by the parents.
- Also included is play time with toys that float in the water like boats and balls.
- And finally a safety talk at the beginning of class. You will learn basic pool etiquette and safety. This includes recognizing when the baby is in distress and what to do.
Submerging the baby underwater
In class we were also instructed and encouraged to fully submerge the baby under water. Its a quick and hallow dunk. I wasn’t expecting this to go well with my baby. But it didn’t turn out so bad. He was a bit puzzled by the whole thing, but did not swallow water, and no tears shed. There is a bit of a technique to this that’s taught to you in class.
Will my baby swimming lessons make my baby cry?
Speaking of tears. There may be some tears shed. I can bet swimming lessons can be quite overwhelming for some babies. Lights, temperature changes, noises, and smells can be a lot to take in. Although the class is limited to 30 minutes, some babies just seem to be extra sensitive may cry.
After swim class is over
After class is over it’s a good idea to be ready for as snack. My baby is very happy and involved in the swimming lessons and in such gets hungry after for a bottle. We also all get to enjoy a long nap all the way home.