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Drop swimming?

(12 Posts)
LLJ4 Tue 06-Jan-15 20:08:06

DC 6.6, 3.8 and 1.1.

Elder two play a reasonable amount of football, 6yo a weekday evening and all Saturday morning, 3yo Sunday morning at which 6yo is a "helper". This sets the scene for "quite busy for a 6yo, with sporting pursuits".

Swimming is becoming a pain in the arse. The only available session is a weekday at 4pm - meaning a dash after school and entertaining 3yo and 1yo in the small, crowded, roasting hot viewing area. 3yo copes ok but has a tendency to wander; 1yo wanders and climbs generally in the opposite direction, and is typically tired out, hungry or both.

It's becoming more difficult as DC3 gets older - he used to just bf and fall asleep so I could read to DC2 and glance over at DC1 swimming too. DC1 goes to get changed by himself because the changing village is a complete nightmare, but I really don't like it.

I realise this sounds like making excuses but I have major anxiety issues and spend most of the session convinced that one or more of the children will be abducted, concussed, drowned, or a combination. It's very hot and noisy there so it's hard to think straight at the best of times.

We had always said that swimming was non-negotiable - you go to swimming lessons until ou can swim. But the practicalities and logistics are becoming overwhelming.

DH works long hours with a lengthy commute and frequent travel so cannot get involved. I'm lucky if he makes half the evening football sessions even though that slot is permanently booked out in his diary. No family or convenient friends to call upon. If I don't take him with both other DC, he doesn't go.

If he drops swimming he will be able to take up a musical instrument (currently clashes). I am really keen for him to do so as I have a musical background. We would also have a spare £20pcm which could be more interestingly/fairly spent.

I am looking for excuses to drop the swimming. But it's swimming, you know?

WWYD?

Lazymummy2014 Tue 06-Jan-15 20:11:31

Will he get swimming lessons through school at any point soon? If so dropping them now wouldn't mean he misses out on learning to swim, and the lessons he has done will mean he'll be starting with a bit of confidence and experience under his belt. You could always go back to private lessons once the timing was more convenient.

Spinaroo Tue 06-Jan-15 20:11:46

I feel your pain- we did it but it was a total PITA and I was glad when last child could swim confidently and wanted to do something else. Middle child went a couple of times on and off before he could swim. What does your ds say? Tbh- unless he needs to swim at 6, I'd drop it until it was easier for everyone

BackforGood Tue 06-Jan-15 20:14:47

Id prefer to drop the football, and wait until older to start instrument. Swimming just opens so many doors, it something i always prioritised, although i do remember hating the days of keeping younger 2 amused while eldest swam.

BrightestAndBest Tue 06-Jan-15 20:18:14

I'd persevere with the swimming. How long before your middle DC can have lessons? (my DC both started swimming lessons aged 3). Once that happens, you'll only have one DC to keep an eye on in the stands and it will get easier.

Pico2 Tue 06-Jan-15 20:26:17

Is there a way of switching to an intensive set of lessons - just to get him swimming independently and then drop it?

LLJ4 Tue 06-Jan-15 20:40:38

Glad (?) it isn't just me who hates it!

Football isn't negotiable really. He can't drop it without dropping out of competitive play forever, effectively, because of the way the leagues etc are arranged. There is no casual football, only weekly training plus weekly matches. It's also been a really useful social 'thing' for a bright but anxious child to have an "in" with children at school and for socialising outside (Beavers is very full; he has been on the waiting list for a long time).

Starting instruments is like starting a language - the earlier the better.

He will have swimming with school from next year I think.

He dislikes swimming. He has been stuck on a particular thing for two terms and just can't get it. The scheme they do has lots of targets to hit, and he hit 85% last April and 97% by July. Since then, nothing. His cohort have got it and moved up, andhe's left behind, with younger children doing the other skills which he can already do. He keeps making excuses not to have to go.

Anyway I have since spoken with DH who came home as I was typing. He says bin the lessons; find some expensive 1-to-1 to get him over his current hurdles; return to classes once other DC are more manageable (DC2 can probably start in September and certainly this time next year) .

Solved for now.

Lazymummy2014 Tue 06-Jan-15 20:42:36

Sounds like a good plan OP smile

misscph1973 Tue 06-Jan-15 20:46:24

You are not making excuses - it sounds bloody hard!

My DC are 7 and 10, and up untill last year they only went on intensive swimming courses in the holidays (usually 5 days). Now they have swimming lessons weekly, for 6 months now, and they are doing great, making so much progress, I think they can stop in another 6 months. I am actually quite happy that I didn't make them take swimming lessons when they were younger, as progress is so good now, I really feel that we are getting a lot for our money ;) I would not have enjoyed years of swimming lessons from an early age (although they both did baby swimming for 6 months) and they wouldn't either. Now they do their home work while the other swims (they swim on th same day, just different classes, one after the other).

I see all the other mums with their small children waiting for their older sibling, and it's hard for them all. Can't say I envy them.

Long term - say when all your kids are grown up - what would make you proud? Their swimming or music? I can understand why you don't want to give up the swimming, but I think that the music is more important to you, and I must say I have often been gutted that my parents never made me learn to play any instrument. Of course swimming is important, but it can wait.

chillybits Tue 06-Jan-15 20:47:28

I have 3 DC similar age gaps but older and additional activities (competitive football and throw tennis squad, dancing, cricket, brownies, cubs etc into the mix).

Swimming was the worst point of my week, was complete chaos and absolutely understand where you're coming from. I hated it until DC3 was old enough to be a bit more controlled, but yes for me it WAS SWIMMING!!!!! Its great now, my older two are becoming properly strong swimmers and its was well worth the 2 years of weekly hell.

6 is really very young to give up I think. My eldest is 10.5 and still getting stronger and its something that will stay with him all his life.

LLJ4 Tue 06-Jan-15 20:56:01

Thanks for the additional insights.

For DH it was a no-brainer - swimming must happen; this swimming is bad; find good swimming. I think I couldn't see the wood for the trees!

And yes, I'd be prouder of a musician than a swimmer - well not really but in the same way I'd rather he became a scientist than a journalist, I'd rather he were a flautist than a swimmer.

Ahem blush I've also remembered that a friend of mine is a (baby) swimming teacher and competitive swimmer. I should ask for her recommendations. We could never use her because days didn't coincide.

Pico2 Tue 06-Jan-15 22:15:56

My DD has gained a lot from 1:1 swimming lessons. The only caveat on getting him 1:1 and then restarting group lessons later is that he probably needs a bit of swimming in between to keep whatever skills he learns. But just recreational stuff with the family.

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