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NOW CLOSED Talk to Speedo about children learning to swim and be in with a chance of winning 1 of 3 £50 Speedo vouchers

(172 Posts)
TheOtherHelenMumsnet (MNHQ) Thu 01-Nov-12 10:15:40

As part of the work we're doing with Speedo, we want to find out what you think about all things swimming-related. Here's what Speedo say about what they're doing: "With new research revealing that 40% of British children can't swim, Speedo has teamed up with Olympic champion Rebecca Adlington and her mum Kay to launch a new learn to swim competition, in a bid to empower parents and children to take the plunge, have fun and get in the pool."

We've provided a few questions to get you started but please feel free to add any other comments you have. Everyone who adds their comments here will be entered into a prize draw to win one of three £50 Speedo vouchers to spend in store or online.

This thread is open to all MNers. Please note that your comments may appear (anonymously) on the Speedo pages on Mumsnet, and potentially elsewhere.

~ Do you think it's important to encourage children to learn to swim? If so, what do you think is the right age to start encouraging them? If you don't think it's important, why is that?

~ Who do you think should take the main responsibility for teaching children to swim? Should it be swimming teachers, schools/nurseries, parents/other family members, or the government, or a combination of all of those?

~ If you have a child who has learnt or is learning to swim, have you been helping to teach them? If so, do you feel confident doing this or a bit out of your depth? (no pun intended!) Do you feel your teaching is working?

~ Does/did your child enjoy learning to swim? Does it/has it caused any tension between you and them if they've been frustrated by it? Or has it been an enjoyable experience?

~ Do you ever feel under any pressure to take your child(ren) swimming more often? If so, who/where does the pressure come from?

Thanks and good luck with the prize draw!

You can also enter Speedo's competition on Mumsnet here.

MNHQ

nextphase Thu 01-Nov-12 20:17:03

I don't think swimming is an essential life skill, but water safety is. So ALL kids should be able to tread water, move in some form, and cope with their faces being dunked without panicking, but full on accurate strokes isn't required.

That said, we've taken both kids since they were fairly small, and at 3 and 1, they seem quite confidant when wearing some sort of floatation device. They are also quite happy to dunk faces under the water in the bath, so something is going right.

I totally understand why the rules are there, but the one adult, one child rule restricts many families with more than one child to weekend swimming only.

I think it is a parents job to get kids water confident, and then they need a trained instructor to get the stroke technique. But classes that fit with working parents would be good - everything round here seems to be at 4pm or 10am in the holidays - and thats just not sustainable long term.

DS1 would love to go swimming more often, but it drys out his skin so much, and makes his eczema flare up, so we try to restrict it. Easier in the summer when we can get the paddling pool (and less chlorinated water!) out.

Do you think it's important to encourage children to learn to swim? If so, what do you think is the right age to start encouraging them? If you don't think it's important, why is that?

Yes it's important. Ideally as early as possible, although repeated ear infections and burst ear drums messed up swimming during the pre-school years for two of my children

~ Who do you think should take the main responsibility for teaching children to swim? Should it be swimming teachers, schools/nurseries, parents/other family members, or the government, or a combination of all of those?

A combination. Much as I'd love to be responsible (and have tried) I have found the ds2 who is scared of the water didn't really respond well to me. We've also had difficulties going swimming as ds1 is severely disabled which makes changing difficult and means I need extra adults.

~ If you have a child who has learnt or is learning to swim, have you been helping to teach them? If so, do you feel confident doing this or a bit out of your depth? (no pun intended!) Do you feel your teaching is working?

I was confident in teaching them, but they were not confident with me! They have done much better with teachers.

~ Does/did your child enjoy learning to swim? Does it/has it caused any tension between you and them if they've been frustrated by it? Or has it been an enjoyable experience?

All three different and quite difficult.

DS1 severely autistic; loves the water and loves being in pools, loved baby swimming, but now sees no point in actual swimming, for years he sort of stayed upright and it's taken a long time to get him tipping onto his tummy. He swims at least twice a week, often more, and he surfs, so he is confident in water now, but still doesn't really see the point in swimming unless it's to stay afloat.

DS2 - booked him baby then pre-school lessons which he HATED. So I stopped and tried to teach him myself, and with school lessons. Got nowhere. Finally (he's 10 now) I have booked private 1:1 and he is at last learning. His inability to swim was beginning to cause real social problems and I am pleased with how well he's doing.

DS3 - loved baby swimming then had years of burst ear drums. Was more scared when back in the pool. He did respond to me teaching him, but had done better now he's getting weekly small group lessons (plus school lessons, but they're too big really to be much use).

~ Do you ever feel under any pressure to take your child(ren) swimming more often? If so, who/where does the pressure come from?

I would love to take them more often. It's very hard with ds1. Swimming pools are not very accessible to teenage kids with severe learning disabilities (esp lack of changing facilities).

cashmere Thu 01-Nov-12 20:26:41

I have taken DS swimming weekly since he was about 5 months old. We've done a mix of swimming by ourselves and 'lessons'. I stopped lessons as I never felt comfortable dunking DS- it instinctively felt wrong (and was often the only one who refused to so felt a bit silly). As he got older we also preferred to do our own thing.
I do think it's worth doing lessons for a while though as it gives you new ideas and gets you into the habit of going weekly.
I think parents should take their children swimming and schools can then build on this.
When our next son is born the cost will increase as I will need to go with DH too (doubling cost), or put the children in the gym crèche (again doubling cost and would have to have fortnightly turns).
I wish the government or local councils would rethink free swimming sessions. Maybe just a couple sessions a week as a compromise.

~ Do you think it's important to encourage children to learn to swim? If so, what do you think is the right age to start encouraging them? If you don't think it's important, why is that?
Of all the baby classes available, swimming in the universal one that parents have done for at least one term. The general consensus seems to be that It's a survival skill and therefore compulsory from after the 12 week jabs (I also know this is a myth). I was particularly seduced by the promise of underwater pictures.... I think the earlier the better.

~ Who do you think should take the main responsibility for teaching children to swim? Should it be swimming teachers, schools/nurseries, parents/other family members, or the government, or a combination of all of those?
Parents. Schools and government should support this but parents shou def lead.

~ If you have a child who has learnt or is learning to swim, have you been helping to teach them? If so, do you feel confident doing this or a bit out of your depth? (no pun intended!) Do you feel your teaching is working?
My husband does the lions share. I don't feel as confident and I think it shows.

~ Does/did your child enjoy learning to swim? Does it/has it caused any tension between you and them if they've been frustrated by it? Or has it been an enjoyable experience?
Lessons have been a nightmare! Neither child has responded well to the order and conforming. The temperature of the water is also really unreliable. TBH I haven't enjoyed a single lesson, and have given up both times after a term. We do go regularly as a family though.

~ Do you ever feel under any pressure to take your child(ren) swimming more often? If so, who/where does the pressure come from?
I feel under pressure to do more of everything for my children! There's social media boasting on a regular basis and that moment on summer holidays when you wish they were happier around the water.
Also, DH saved a kid from drowning on holiday this Summer. Loads of people by the pool but no one noticed. The boy was out of his comfort level and I never want my kids to get into that situation.

HannahLI Thu 01-Nov-12 20:46:59

~ Do you think it's important to encourage children to learn to swim? If so, what do you think is the right age to start encouraging them? If you don't think it's important, why is that?
Yes I think it is very important! Swimming is not only great exercise and great fun but knowing how to can save lives in so many situations and I would hate for my children to miss out on water sports at a later age because they can't swim. I think as young as possible is best as then it's learnt as an instinctive thing and it's easier because it becomes like second nature.

~ Who do you think should take the main responsibility for teaching children to swim? Should it be swimming teachers, schools/nurseries, parents/other family members, or the government, or a combination of all of those?
I think parents should be the encouragers, I was always encouraged by my parents and they provided great opportunities for me to learn, as well as encouraging me to participate in school activities when they were available to me. I do think that schools and government should be pushing for good opportunities and incentives for parents to get their children involved.

~ If you have a child who has learnt or is learning to swim, have you been helping to teach them? If so, do you feel confident doing this or a bit out of your depth? (no pun intended!) Do you feel your teaching is working?
My children are little so during swimming lessons I am in the pool with them, what I learned taking my first to lessons I felt very confident at putting in place with my second child, it was very noticeable that my husband was very confident in dunking and swimming with our 6 month old where he was very cautious first time around.

~ Does/did your child enjoy learning to swim? Does it/has it caused any tension between you and them if they've been frustrated by it? Or has it been an enjoyable experience?
It has been great fun and something I continue to keep doing. My son loves swimming.

~ Do you ever feel under any pressure to take your child(ren) swimming more often? If so, who/where does the pressure come from? No

To add to my comments one of my biggest things with taking my kids swimming is the pool. They are both young 2 and 7 months and our local pool struggles to maintain their pool temp so it can be very cold and it does have family friendly changing rooms but sometimes they aren't well maintained which for me is an issue. In part of encouraging young people to swim these issues also I feel need to be addressed too. I know lots of mums locally who I have overheard telling other mums not to swim with young children because it's not suitable for the above reasons which very much saddens me.

Mummydoctor Thu 01-Nov-12 21:19:17

Yes swimming is important - start as early as possible. I took both mine to Waterbabies from the age of 6 months. And they are still going now.

I think overall parents have the main responsibility to teach swimming, but this should be supported by schools and funding from government.

I didn't learn to swim until I was 21 and really felt like I missed out as a child. Hence it was important for me to get my kids happy in the water. Luckily, they have both loved it from the start. DS1 is 3.5yrs and a few weeks ago swam 2 widths of the pool unaided. DS2 is 1.5 yrs and loves it too. I enjoy taking them swimming and it also gives us some structure to my days off work.

Both boys LOVE it. DS1 was extra clingy in the pool for a few months when his brother arrived, but as with all things parenting, it was just a phase. I did find it frustrating though when I knew he could do much more than he would actually do.

I don't feel any extra pressure to go swimming more often given that the boys swim twice a week (lessons and just local pool) and I swim for exercise 1-2 times/week. We are an active family and it is a great way to spend some fun family time.

marmitemad Thu 01-Nov-12 21:20:13

Do you think it's important to encourage children to learn to swim? If so, what do you think is the right age to start encouraging them? If you don't think it's important, why is that?
yes, mainly from a safety point of view but also its such an easy form of exercise. dd started at 6 weeks so has always been very confident in water. I think its important that children start early (as soon as practical) so they are not scared when its time to start learning properly

~ Who do you think should take the main responsibility for teaching children to swim? Should it be swimming teachers, schools/nurseries, parents/other family members, or the government, or a combination of all of those?
parents/family members although I guess some support from schools/the government would help those not interested

~ If you have a child who has learnt or is learning to swim, have you been helping to teach them? If so, do you feel confident doing this or a bit out of your depth? (no pun intended!) Do you feel your teaching is working?
yes, we normally go for a family swim every weekend for dd to practise and have fun play time and dh and I to have a proper length swim (we take turns)

~ Does/did your child enjoy learning to swim? Does it/has it caused any tension between you and them if they've been frustrated by it? Or has it been an enjoyable experience?
on the whole, yes. dd is confident now she can swim and not keen on practising stroke technique so sometimes we have to talk about the importance of swimming and not just playing

~ Do you ever feel under any pressure to take your child(ren) swimming more often? If so, who/where does the pressure come from?
no, we all love swimming as a family

Ruprekt Thu 01-Nov-12 21:21:34

Do you think it's important to encourage children to learn to swim? If so, what do you think is the right age to start encouraging them? If you don't think it's important, why is that?

It was definitely something I wanted for both my boys as I am a weak swimmer. We took them from an early age and both have had lessons since they were 3. They are now 10 and 7.

~ Who do you think should take the main responsibility for teaching children to swim? Should it be swimming teachers, schools/nurseries, parents/other family members, or the government, or a combination of all of those?

Parents. All upbringing is down to parents and then the school can have some input as they get older. At our school it is part of the curriculum in Y3 to have swimming lessons but only for a term. I wish this would continue through upper school.

~ If you have a child who has learnt or is learning to swim, have you been helping to teach them? If so, do you feel confident doing this or a bit out of your depth? (no pun intended!) Do you feel your teaching is working?

No, we swim as a family for pleasure but DS2 swims with a club each week which teaches him the proper way to swim.

~ Does/did your child enjoy learning to swim? Does it/has it caused any tension between you and them if they've been frustrated by it? Or has it been an enjoyable experience?

DS2 love to swim. DS1 less so but that is because his younger brother swims better than him.

~ Do you ever feel under any pressure to take your child(ren) swimming more often? If so, who/where does the pressure come from?

No. I do lots with my boys and am under no pressure to do more.

BerryLellow Thu 01-Nov-12 21:31:45

~ Do you think it's important to encourage children to learn to swim? If so, what do you think is the right age to start encouraging them? If you don't think it's important, why is that?

Yes, absolutely. I've taken both of my children in from babies as they can get used to the whole thing early on. We go at least once a week as a family, and the older child has one lesson a week, which the youngest will do when he is old enough. We live in a coastal village, a few hundred metres from the sea, so it's vital for them to be confident and competent.

~ Who do you think should take the main responsibility for teaching children to swim? Should it be swimming teachers, schools/nurseries, parents/other family members, or the government, or a combination of all of those?

I think where possible it should be the parent that starts it all off, but sometimes facilities and finances can be prohibitive. It would be good if councils could subsidise swimming lessons for children from low income families so that they aren't reliant on the small provision there is within schools. A combination effort would be ideal.

~ If you have a child who has learnt or is learning to swim, have you been helping to teach them? If so, do you feel confident doing this or a bit out of your depth? (no pun intended!) Do you feel your teaching is working?

Yes, I worked as a lifeguard before having children, so saw many many lessons. I've used some of the techniques I learnt with my own children. The only problem with this is they are less likely to keep trying than when they are with an instructor.

~ Does/did your child enjoy learning to swim? Does it/has it caused any tension between you and them if they've been frustrated by it? Or has it been an enjoyable experience?

They enjoy it.

~ Do you ever feel under any pressure to take your child(ren) swimming more often? If so, who/where does the pressure come from?

Yes, my children have no concept of how expensive it can be.

I think swimming is a life skill that is so important, not least for personal safety reasons. It's a brilliant sport that provides great all round fitness on it's own, or complements other sports. It's the one thing that is non-negotiable with my children - they can give up other clubs/ sports, but they will go to swimming lessons until they have reached competence.

oldsilver Thu 01-Nov-12 21:32:06

~ Do you think it's important to encourage children to learn to swim? If so, what do you think is the right age to start encouraging them? If you don't think it's important, why is that? Oh yes, as soon as possible. I only wish DP thought the same, it's why at 6 he's only just started proper lessons. I have taught him as much as I can. But I don't know how to teach children properly cause I wasn't taught at that age.

~ Who do you think should take the main responsibility for teaching children to swim? Should it be swimming teachers, schools/nurseries, parents/other family members, or the government, or a combination of all of those? A combination would be good. I taught myself to swim at age 28, I don't think I have the skills to teach the correct way to do the strokes but I have managed to give him water confidence and to practice the stuff he learns in his lesson. I would like schools to have more than just a year (at age 10) or less on lessons. That is all we get at our school.

~ If you have a child who has learnt or is learning to swim, have you been helping to teach them? If so, do you feel confident doing this or a bit out of your depth? (no pun intended!) Do you feel your teaching is working? As stated above, I have managed to give him water confidence but my school swim lessons were 30 odd years ago and they scared the living daylights out of me and I came away not being able to swim. According to the swim baths he has the basics, so I must have done an OK job smile And that's only because I was the only option he had as DP didn't agree with him having lessons - so I HAD to do the best job I could.

~ Does/did your child enjoy learning to swim? Does it/has it caused any tension between you and them if they've been frustrated by it? Or has it been an enjoyable experience? He adores it, something he really looks forward to each Saturday - especially cause I go in the pool and do lengths, so when his lesson finishes we have a swim together. He has got frustrated at times. I. Am. Very. Patient smile We work through it together.

~ Do you ever feel under any pressure to take your child(ren) swimming more often? If so, who/where does the pressure come from? Not really. It is something DS and I enjoy doing together - our thing, if you will smile Not being able to swim until I was 28 means I put pressure on myself, I don't want him to miss out on swim parties, or just going with mates. I enjoy sea swimming, I would like him to have the fun I do. I just know how much I missed out on things not being able to swim and wished I had the lessons he has now. I also wish I had parents who were willing to take me to a pool swimming. Both mine refused as they didn't like pools. So yep, basically, the pressure comes from me smile

eteo Thu 01-Nov-12 21:33:47

~ Do you think it's important to encourage children to learn to swim? If so, what do you think is the right age to start encouraging them? If you don't think it's important, why is that?

Yes, I will take them as young as possible. Swimming is a basic life skill.

~ Who do you think should take the main responsibility for teaching children to swim? Should it be swimming teachers, schools/nurseries, parents/other family members, or the government, or a combination of all of those?

I think it is parents are the main responsibility. The government should encourage the parents and help fund for free swimming for children.

~ If you have a child who has learnt or is learning to swim, have you been helping to teach them? If so, do you feel confident doing this or a bit out of your depth? (no pun intended!) Do you feel your teaching is working?

we tend to bring them for fun swim whenever we can. and teach them the right way to enjoy themshelves and learn to kick!

~ Does/did your child enjoy learning to swim? Does it/has it caused any tension between you and them if they've been frustrated by it? Or has it been an enjoyable experience?

yes, both love water. we dont have any problem.

~ Do you ever feel under any pressure to take your child(ren) swimming more often? If so, who/where does the pressure come from?

Not at all. Both children are still young and they have so much things to learn in life. i wont pressure them at all. slowly learn.

naturalbaby Thu 01-Nov-12 21:36:21

I think swimming is a life skill every child should learn. I started taking my dc's swimming when they were a few weeks old and took them to structured lessons when they were a few months old for water safety then again at around 3 to start learning how to swim.

Parents should take the main responsibility for teaching children to swim or taking them to swimming sessions/lessons. I think all children should get the opportunity at school for families that don't go regularly/at all - most do that I know of but I don't know if it's enough to teach children with no experience how to swim.

I take my dc's to swimming lessons but put in a lot of teaching myself because I used to swim competitively when I was younger so have a lot of experience. At the moment we're working on water confidence because they are still young.

My children love swimming, I love taking them.

I pressure myself to take them more often because I see the progress when we go every week, but can't always manage to take all 3 dc's every week! As soon as we can take all 3 together with 2 adults then we'll go more often.

mummyofcutetwo Thu 01-Nov-12 21:40:31

~ Do you think it's important to encourage children to learn to swim? If so, what do you think is the right age to start encouraging them? If you don't think it's important, why is that?

I think it's essential that children learn to swim. I think it's important for them to get used to the water from just a couple of months old, and then to have lessons from about four years old.

~ Who do you think should take the main responsibility for teaching children to swim? Should it be swimming teachers, schools/nurseries, parents/other family members, or the government, or a combination of all of those?

It should the parents' decision to then find the right teacher. However, I think lessons are so expensive and so it would be good if they could be subsidised to enable all children to access such an essential skill.

~ If you have a child who has learnt or is learning to swim, have you been helping to teach them? If so, do you feel confident doing this or a bit out of your depth? (no pun intended!) Do you feel your teaching is working?

I've not been able to afford lessons for my boys as yet but take them to the pool when I can to instil confidence in the water etc.

~ Does/did your child enjoy learning to swim? Does it/has it caused any tension between you and them if they've been frustrated by it? Or has it been an enjoyable experience?

DS1 is more confident at some times than others which can be a little frustrating - I know that he can do something as he's done it before. I just don't feel qualified to teach him/them.

~ Do you ever feel under any pressure to take your child(ren) swimming more often? If so, who/where does the pressure come from?

DS1 loves going to the pool and I don't manage to take them often enough.

ceeb Thu 01-Nov-12 21:44:18

~ Do you think it's important to encourage children to learn to swim? If so, what do you think is the right age to start encouraging them? If you don't think it's important, why is that?

The ability to swim is (a) enjoyable (b) great exercise - one of the only aerobic exercises in fact that doesn't put strain on your joints and (c) life saving. Why wouldn't you teach your children?

I took both my DS from age 3 months. Both of them took to it really well, and they say the memory of being immersed in water in the womb is still there at that age, so it is worth starting early. As a result, both of them were confident swimmers (without armbands) at age 2. Having said that, neither of them picked up proper strokes until 5/6, so I think waiting until that time to have proper lessons would have saved me a lot of money!

~ Who do you think should take the main responsibility for teaching children to swim? Should it be swimming teachers, schools/nurseries, parents/other family members, or the government, or a combination of all of those?
Parents need to take the lead but any help from any other responsible figure is worth it!

~ If you have a child who has learnt or is learning to swim, have you been helping to teach them? If so, do you feel confident doing this or a bit out of your depth? (no pun intended!) Do you feel your teaching is working?
I don't like teaching my children myself, but a friend of mine does it quite successfully, but she is a trained swimming coach, so that helps!

~ Does/did your child enjoy learning to swim? Does it/has it caused any tension between you and them if they've been frustrated by it? Or has it been an enjoyable experience?
Because we started so early there has never been any frustration about swimming, both my DS love it and would go every day if I took them! Having said that, they have had varied success with lessons - like any sport, it depends on the coach.

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lunar1 Thu 01-Nov-12 21:51:07

I started taking ds1 swimming at 2.6 yrs, he did not like it at first and would not let go of me in the water. He has just turned 4 and can swim 50m without aids and is in a stage 3 class and loves it. I started taking ds2 at 6 months, he has never cried and loves the pool, he can propel himself across the small pool with his armbands on at 16 months. I think it is essential to learn to swim and learn water safety, the younger the better.

Swimming should be compulsory from the start of school, no other extra-curricular activity will save your Childs life, it should be a combination of swimming teachers, schools/nurseries, parents/other family members and the government to get children swimming.

I was nervous to start my children swimming but found the confidence with a course run by sure start. They each have a lesson once a week, I get in with my youngest and I take them myself once a week. They mostly just play and splash about. I had to get permission from the teacher to take 2 young ones in on my own when one doesn’t use swim aids as its not within the pool guidelines. The eldest doesn’t really learn from me now, he is a better swimmer than me but I think the extra time in the pool helps them and keeps it fun.

My children love swimming lessons. Pressure to go more often comes from my eldest, he did intensive lessons over the summer and would love to carry on going every day if he could. The changing facilities are the worst part of swimming as they are so bad it does sometimes put me off.

TarnishedTupperware Thu 01-Nov-12 21:51:21

~ Children should be encouraged to swim, it is of paramount importance to build their confidence in the water as a foundation for their swimming skills. Children should learn to swim as soon as their own motor skills allow it.

~ Initially the parent or main carer should be responsible for building water confidence. In many families a parent is the main influence at a child's age when they are introduced to the water. Later on, schools should be supported by government grants to enable them to teach the necessary skills to survive in the water as well as become a confident swimmer.

~ My husband and I took our son to swimming pools from around 3 months old. As a result he does not fear the water nor does he feel uncomfortable around it. The complete opposite, we can't get him out! At 3 years old we now support and build on what his swimming lessons teach him. We practice what has been demonstrated in the lessons. This is easy as we are by the side of the pool watching and listening. Yes we feel our support and encouragement is effective.

~ Our son loves his swimming lessons. All children stumble with their learning in any subject at some point. As long as you encourage them to overcome their frustration and learn from it, they will progress. As parents, we love to see him develop his skills in the water.

~ The only pressure we have felt is that the responsibility for our son learning to swim lies with us. We are more than aware that we cannot leave this essential life skill to anyone else. It is a shame that children without parental support in this area may never develop water confidence and learn to swim.

Firewall Thu 01-Nov-12 22:00:15

~ Do you think it's important to encourage children to learn to swim? If so, what do you think is the right age to start encouraging them? If you don't think it's important, why is that?

Yes, it's an important life skill to have. You never know when they may get in trouble (in the sea, river etc) important to be familiar within the water. I think to slowly encourage from a young age but not to be pushy as you do not want to cause an innate fear of water either which can happen if you push them to hard. Hear your children, encourage and play in the water, know what is comfortable for them.

~ Who do you think should take the main responsibility for teaching children to swim? Should it be swimming teachers, schools/nurseries, parents/other family members, or the government, or a combination of all of those?

I think it is parents responsibility te ensure their kids are as rounded as possible obviously not all parents will prioritise this so it's important for schools to have provisions in place. It's the governments responsibility to ensure entry to the pool is affordable.

~ If you have a child who has learnt or is learning to swim, have you been helping to teach them? If so, do you feel confident doing this or a bit out of your depth? (no pun intended!) Do you feel your teaching is working?

I was a competitive swimmer myself, my child is not yet at the learning stage but we go to the pool regularly, encourage kicking, arm moving I the water. Play in the water.

~ Does/did your child enjoy learning to swim? Does it/has it caused any tension between you and them if they've been frustrated by it? Or has it been an enjoyable experience?

My child cried when he was younger in the pool, so we left it for 6 on this before trying again, again it took a while for him to get used to it so gave it a break,. When they were 2, we tried again and there was immediate enjoyment in the pool so we knew to encourage it more.

~ Do you ever feel under any pressure to take your child(ren) swimming more often? If so, who/where does the pressure come from?

Not really, it's a personal thing and what you want for your kids.

Sabriel Thu 01-Nov-12 22:07:17

~Swimming is a vital skill and the earlier the better. We started classes at 6 mo.

~Main responsibility lies with parents, with "catch up" at Junior school

~We left swimming teaching to the experts, although we started at Water Babies so one of us went in the water with DD until she was about 3.

~DD has always loved swimming. Even when we first started and she was very young her face would light up when we got to the pool and she couldn't wait to get in. If there was ever a time she didn't want to do it (she's now 5) then we'd stop.

~ I feel I really ought to take her myself between lessons, as we have a pool in walking distance from our house. There never seems to be enough time. The pressure is internal.

Welovecouscous Thu 01-Nov-12 22:16:41

I can never get to the pool as DS keeps being ill - would be good to have guidance on when toddlers should be kept off swimming. I always think colds are ok.

stickylittlefingers Thu 01-Nov-12 22:25:16

~ Do you think it's important to encourage children to learn to swim? If so, what do you think is the right age to start encouraging them? If you don't think it's important, why is that?

I do think it's important. We have been taking both ours since they were babies, in the hope they would always think it was a natural thing to do.

~ Who do you think should take the main responsibility for teaching children to swim? Should it be swimming teachers, schools/nurseries, parents/other family members, or the government, or a combination of all of those?

I do think there should be funding for swimming at school, so that all children (who go to school) have the opportunity to learn to swim, or improve if they already have. Not all parents will feel confident to take their children swimming and those children shouldn't miss out.

~ If you have a child who has learnt or is learning to swim, have you been helping to teach them? If so, do you feel confident doing this or a bit out of your depth? (no pun intended!) Do you feel your teaching is working?

I do, but I do also watch at their swimming lessons and try and reinforce what is done there.

~ Does/did your child enjoy learning to swim? Does it/has it caused any tension between you and them if they've been frustrated by it? Or has it been an enjoyable experience?

We have been very happy with the swimming lessons, and the DC have loved them

~ Do you ever feel under any pressure to take your child(ren) swimming more often? If so, who/where does the pressure come from?

Not under pressure as such, but DC like going swimming so will ask to go.

Iwillorderthefood Thu 01-Nov-12 23:18:08

Do you think it's important to encourage children to learn to swim? If so, what do you think is the right age to start encouraging them? If you don't think it's important, why is that?

It is extremely important, it is a life skill that can keep you fit in a non impact way, it could save your life and can also provide a lot of pleasure whilst on holiday or perhaps persuing other water based activities such as diving, sailing etc. I have encouraged both of my children to swim from around 18 months ( ear issues prevented early swim sessions) Ideally it should be encouraged as early as both parent and child feel comfortable with.

Who do you think should take the main responsibility for teaching children to swim? Should it be swimming teachers, schools/nurseries, parents/other family members, or the government, or a combination of all of those?

Overall it is the parents via a combination of all methods.

If you have a child who has learnt or is learning to swim, have you been helping to teach them? If so, do you feel confident doing this or a bit out of your depth? (no pun intended!) Do you feel your teaching is working?

I felt very able with my first child who loved the water. I have definitely helped build confidence and reinforce what the swim teacher has said. With my second child it is more difficult she is afraid and i have recently taken her out of lessons as she becomes hysterical. I am however confident that I will build her confidence and she will one day be able to swim.

* Does/did your child enjoy learning to swim? Does it/has it caused any tension between you and them if they've been frustrated by it? Or has it been an enjoyable experience?*

DD1 loves learning to swim, we have had one issues as she has not liked her teacher but we have allays been good at working out way around d it without tension.

DD2 it is more tense but I am trying my best to reduce the tension as this will not be the ideal base upon which to encourage her to learn to swim. Keep tension away and allow things to stay fun.

Do you ever feel under any pressure to take your child(ren) swimming more often? If so, who/where does the pressure come from?

Yes I do, as I love taking them swimming and would take them much moe often if I was able to. Pressure is from me.

DollyTwat Thu 01-Nov-12 23:27:05

~ Do you think it's important to encourage children to learn to swim? If so, what do you think is the right age to start encouraging them? If you don't think it's important, why is that?

I think it's essential for children to learn to swim. It's fun. It's a great way to socialize and keep fit. The safety aspect is also important but I've only ever wanted my children to be able to have fun in water safely

~ Who do you think should take the main responsibility for teaching children to swim? Should it be swimming teachers, schools/nurseries, parents/other family members, or the government, or a combination of all of those?

A combination of those. Swimming with parents is the fun time. With swimming teachers also fun but more structured

~ If you have a child who has learnt or is learning to swim, have you been helping to teach them? If so, do you feel confident doing this or a bit out of your depth? (no pun intended!) Do you feel your teaching is working?

I just have fun with my children. I can't teach them strokes as they are probably better than me now! The structure is provided by swimming lessons

~ Does/did your child enjoy learning to swim? Does it/has it caused any tension between you and them if they've been frustrated by it? Or has it been an enjoyable experience?

Both my children enjoyed learning and have found it enjoyable. It's frustrating to start with but too much pressure on learning strokes is the cause

~ Do you ever feel under any pressure to take your child(ren) swimming more often? If so, who/where does the pressure come from?

No but I do feel guilty my eldest doesn't go that often now his lessons are over

preety18 Thu 01-Nov-12 23:28:20

~ Do you think it's important to encourage children to learn to swim? If so, what do you think is the right age to start encouraging them? If you don't think it's important, why is that?

Yes it is important for children to learn to swim. There is no right age the earlier you start the better it is as children build up confidence quicker than the older ones.

~ Who do you think should take the main responsibility for teaching children to swim? Should it be swimming teachers, schools/nurseries, parents/other family members, or the government, or a combination of all of those?

It is the parent responsibility to make sure along side with a swimming teacher.

~ If you have a child who has learnt or is learning to swim, have you been helping to teach them? If so, do you feel confident doing this or a bit out of your depth? (no pun intended!) Do you feel your teaching is working?

No personally I can't swim myself, I'm scared of the water. But I wanted my children to be able to swim and not be scared like me.

~ Does/did your child enjoy learning to swim? Does it/has it caused any tension between you and them if they've been frustrated by it? Or has it been an enjoyable experience?

My children absolutely love swimming.

~ Do you ever feel under any pressure to take your child(ren) swimming more often? If so, who/where does the pressure come from?

Yes, as being both working parents who works shift pattern we find it hard t take them swimming, hence the reason we've get them to have weekly swimming lessons from a very early age.

ScorpionQueen Thu 01-Nov-12 23:33:59

~ Do you think it's important to encourage children to learn to swim? If so, what do you think is the right age to start encouraging them? If you don't think it's important, why is that?
Swimming is a life skill. It is so important that children learn to swim, not only for pleasure and exercise but also for safety.

~ Who do you think should take the main responsibility for teaching children to swim? Should it be swimming teachers, schools/nurseries, parents/other family members, or the government, or a combination of all of those?
Although I believe schools should do more (and the Government should fund it) as a parent I chose to fund private lessons. My children were lucky I could afford it as over the years it ran into hundreds of pounds.

~ If you have a child who has learnt or is learning to swim, have you been helping to teach them? If so, do you feel confident doing this or a bit out of your depth? (no pun intended!) Do you feel your teaching is working?
Swimming has to be fun to make a confident child but we focused on playing, races and games rather than me trying to teach them per se. I took my 2 swimming from a young age to build their confidence then booked lessons when my input was no longer enough.

~ Does/did your child enjoy learning to swim? Does it/has it caused any tension between you and them if they've been frustrated by it? Or has it been an enjoyable experience?
My eldest was almost a swimmer when we started lessons and picked it up straight away. The youngest took longer as she is naturally less bouyant. It took longer to build her confidence but with the help of a wonderful teacher she got there.

~ Do you ever feel under any pressure to take your child(ren) swimming more often? If so, who/where does the pressure come from?
Only from them. smile

This year the hundreds of pounds spent on lessons over the years really paid off. On holiday I was able to relax a lot more and didn't have to be in the water to constantly support the children. We have stopped lessons as the children could swim and no longer wanted to go, so I have to make an effort to take them swimming more often.

lljkk Thu 01-Nov-12 23:37:41

~ I see swimming as an essential life skill, no huge rush, but as soon as they (typically age 5-6 with mine).

~ It's my job to see it gets done, I paid swim teachers to do it.

~ DC enjoyed it up to a basic level of competency, usually saw lessons as a chore after that.

~ I feel pressured to make the most of the free leisure swims that come with their lessons smile. Also, they need to go regularly to keep skills refreshed & water confidence.

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