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The Ultimate Guide to Mommy & Me Swim Lessons

Updated: Sep 19, 2023

Many parents wonder when the best time is to start their child in swimming lessons. While there is no definitive answer, it is generally recommended that children be at least six months old before they start their first lesson. This gives them time to develop the muscles and coordination needed to swim.

mommy and me group swim lesson

It is also important to make sure that your child is comfortable in the water. If they seem unhappy or scared, it may be best to wait a bit longer before starting lessons. Ultimately, the decision of when to start swimming lessons should be made based on your child's individual needs and abilities. With a little bit of patience and determination, you can help your little student feel a lifelong love of swimming.

Concerned about dry drowning? Read all about it here.

At such a young age, it is recommended that parents start swimming classes in the water with their baby when being taught for the first time. If you baby is going to take a swim lessons class without a parent in the water, then it should be a private 1 on 1 swim lesson with a swim teacher. I feel your little swimmer will benefit the most from a mommy and me (or dad) lesson.

In this type of baby swimming lessons, infant students and parent are taught by and certified, professional instructor developing life saving skills and allowing you to spend quality time with each other. I hope you find the following information about these type of classes to be a great resource when making the decision whether or not to sign your babies and toddlers up for water safety programs and swim classes.

Benefits of Parent & Baby Swimming Lessons

swimming is a great form of exercise for both babies and adults. It is a low-impact activity that is easy on the joints, and it provides a full-body workout. Plus, it is an excellent way to cool off on a hot summer day. Baby swim lessons can encourage muscle strength and coordination.

It is also a great way to socialize, as it provides an opportunity to interact with other children and adults. And for adults, a swim session can help to improve cardiovascular fitness and increase flexibility. In addition, it is a great way to relieve stress and relax the mind. So whether you are young or old, swimming is an excellent way to stay healthy and happy.

1. Swimming helps to develop baby's motor skills.

When they are in the water, they will have to use their arms and legs to move themselves around. This can help them to learn how to coordinate their movements. In addition, the resistance of the water will help to build their muscles. Swimming is also a great way to bond with your baby. You will be able to hold them close and talk to them. This can help to improve their social skills.

2. Swimming helps to strengthen baby's immune system.

Swimming is a great way to stay healthy and active, and it turns out that it may also help to boost baby's immunity. One study found that babies who participated in weekly swim classes had significantly lower rates of respiratory infections than those who did not swim. Additionally, swimming has been shown to reduce the risk of developing allergies and asthma.

The benefits are believed to come from exposure to the chlorinated water, which helps to kill bacteria and other pathogens. It also helps to strengthen baby's muscles and lungs, making them better able to fight off illness. So getting baby into the pool may not only be a fun way to bond, but it could also help keep them healthy in the long run.

3. Swimming is a great way to bond with your baby.

Baby swim lessons is a great activity to bond with your infants and toddlers. It is a chance to be close to them and to build a strong connection. It is also a great way to introduce them to the water and help them to feel comfortable in it.

Swimming is a low-impact activity, so it is gentle on their body and they can move around freely. The curriculum in each lesson and session is teaching young swimmers and parents fun activities in the water, as well as water safety. Join a program with our involved, passionate instructors and see how fast you connect with your little one.

sleeping baby

4. Pool Time can help baby to relax and sleep better.

Pool time can also be very calming for both babies and toddlers. The rhythmic movement of the water helps to soothe and relax them, while the freedom to move their arms and legs helps to tire them out. The water temperature is typically very warm which will soothe your infant. As a result, swimming can be an excellent way to help your infant to sleep better. Just be careful that the little ones don't fall asleep during floating skill sessions!

kids swimming with life jackets

5. Swimming is a fun and enjoyable activity for the whole family!

Of the many benefits, no matter your child's age, swimming is fun and enjoyable. Babies and young kids will learn breath control and build confidence, which has many positive behavioral benefits. It is a great way of teaching infants from a young age to stay in shape and swim can be done either competitively or for recreation.

Swim activities are also safe for the whole family, as there is minimal impact on the joints and little risk of collision with other swimmers. In addition, swimming is a great way to spend time together as a family. It can be done at almost any time of year, and it is a fun way to begin to cool off on a hot summer day. Whether you are taking a dip in the pool or going for a swim at the beach, swimming is an enjoyable activity for the whole family.

Essentials for Mommy and Me Swim Lessons

Taking your baby for swim lessons is not just about diving right into the water. It's also about ensuring you're fully equipped with the necessary gear to make the experience safe, comfortable, and fun for both you and your little one. Below are some of the best products that parents can consider investing in to get the most out of their mommy and me swim lessons.

  • Infant Swim Diapers: This is a must-have for any baby getting into a pool. Infant swim diapers are designed to be worn in the water, ensuring that any accidents are contained without absorbing the water like regular diapers would. Reusable swim diapers are cost-effective and eco-friendly, like the Little Piggy Baby Swim Diapers.

  • Baby Swimsuits or Wetsuits: Babies can lose heat quickly in water, even if it's warm. A baby wetsuit or thermal swimsuit can help keep them comfortable and happy. Check out the Surfer Fish Infant & Toddler Bathing suit.

  • Baby Floats: Baby floats are excellent tools for introducing your baby to the water. They allow babies to float freely and safely while they get used to the sensation of being in the water. The Mambobaby Swim Trainer with Canopy is an excellent choice.

  • Swim Toys: Toys can make the swimming experience more fun and enjoyable for your baby. They can be used to distract, entertain, and also help in teaching certain skills. Munchkin's Bath Toy, Little Boat Train is a great set of colorful boats that float and link.

  • Towels and Robes: Having a soft, warm towel or robe ready for when your baby gets out of the water is important to keep them warm and prevent chills. The Little Ashkim Panda Hooded Cotton Towel is organic, hypoallergenic, and perfect for delicate skin. Oh and did we mention it is the cutest thing we've ever seen!

Familiarizing Your Little One With the Water

Every swim lesson journey begins with familiarization - a process that transitions your child from apprehension to admiration for the water. The moment when your child's tiny toes touch the water for the first time is etched in your memory forever. The first step is not about mastering strokes or learning to float, but about creating a positive association with water.

During these early lessons, the pool transforms into a playground. Toys and games are commonly used to create an inviting and fun environment. Picture your child's face light up as they reach out to grab brightly colored floating toys. Or the sound of their giggles as they splash around, seeing the water ripple and cascade around them. This engagement not only creates a fun experience but also subtly encourages them to move, kick, and paddle in the water.

Instructors play a key role in this process. They guide you on how to safely hold your child in the water. One popular method is the "hip hold", where your child rests on your hip, their front towards you. This provides them with a clear view of their surroundings while keeping them close to your body for security. As they kick and paddle, they start to experience the sensation of moving in water, all under your watchful eye and gentle guidance.

Gradually, your child will start to feel at home in the water, laying the foundation for more advanced skills to be introduced. It's a delightful transformation to witness - from initial wariness to a beaming face that cannot wait to jump in at the sight of a pool. This comfort and confidence in water are the pillars on which future swim skills are built, making familiarization a crucial first step in the journey of swim lessons.

Building Basic Swimming Skills

The Art of Blowing Bubbles

The magic begins when your child learns to blow bubbles underwater. It's not just about creating a cascade of bubbles. Instead, it's a fun way of teaching your child to exhale underwater, a critical part of the breathing technique in swimming. Witnessing your child's initial hesitation morph into excitement as they see the bubbles they've created rise and pop is a priceless moment.

Floating - The Step Towards Independence

Next on the agenda is floating, an exercise that goes beyond just laying back in your arms in the water. This step instills in your child the trust that water will support them. As they lay relaxed in water, their faces beam up at you with a blend of anticipation and pride. The memory of this experience often becomes an integral part of their earliest water-based recollections.

Kicking and Arm Movements - The Cornerstones of Swimming

Kicking and arm movements are the final cornerstones of basic swim skills. With your child cradled in your arms, you'll notice their tiny feet splashing - the initial signs of a kick. They'll begin experimenting with their arm movements, creating ripples that radiate across the pool.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Are there any risks associated with giving infants and children swim lessons at an early age?

chlorinated water is often used in swimming pools to help keep the water clean and safe for swimmers. But what about babies? Is it safe for them to swim in chlorinated water?

There are some things to consider before taking your baby swimming in chlorinated water. First, make sure that the pool you plan to use is well-maintained and has the proper levels of chlorine. Second, avoid letting your baby drink the pool water. And finally, don't let your baby swim for too long - no more than 30 minutes at a time.

Be aware of dangers for children. Read our recent article on The Dangers of Underwater Breath Holding for Children.

Salt-water alternative

It's important to choose the right type of pool for your baby. Salt water pools are becoming increasingly popular, but chlorinated pools are still more common. So, what are the benefits of swimming in a salt water pool? Salt water is more gentle on the skin and eyes than chlorine, making it ideal for little kids with sensitive skin.

It's also thought to be better for hair, as it doesn't cause hair to dry out as much. In addition, salt water pools don't require as much chemical treatment, making them more environmentally friendly. However, one downside is that salt water can be tough on swim diapers, so you may need to use disposables if you're planning on spending a lot of time in the pool. Overall, salt water pools offer a gentler, more natural alternative to chlorinated pools - perfect for babies swimming lessons.

If you take these precautions, then swimming in chlorinated water should be safe for your baby. Just be sure to watch them closely and get them out of the pool if they start to show any signs of discomfort.

2. How young is too young to start baby swim lessons or toddler swim lessons?

There is no definitive answer to the question of how young is too young to start baby swimming lessons or toddler swim lessons. Some experts believe that it is never too early to start teaching water safety, while others recommend waiting until a child is at least six months old. In general, however, most parents choose to wait until their child is at least one year old before enrolling them in swim lessons. However, mommy and me swim lessons have other benefits and offer parent and tot lesson plans that teach a very young infant so many things before they can even walk.

At this age, children are more coordinated and capable of following simple instructions. Additionally, they are less likely to be afraid of the water, which can make swim lessons more enjoyable for both the child and the parent. Ultimately, the decision of what ages your little swimmer starts in swim lessons is a personal one that should be based on the child's development and the parent's comfort level. We feel a parent putting their child in the water at any age will teach them life saving skills and will help teach them faster.

3. What should I look for when choosing a swim school for my

instructor teaching young girl back stroke


When choosing a swim school for your infant, there are several things to keep in mind. First, it is important to make sure that the instructors are properly certified. They should have experience teaching infant lessons, swim classes for little ones, breath control skills and floating skills.

Second, you should take a look at the pool area to see if it is clean and well-maintained. The pool should also be the appropriate size for the class—not too small or too large. Does the swim lesson program advertise a mommy and me swim lesson class and does the curriculum they are teaching truly introduce water safety for infants and parent? Parents should look for lessons taught by an instructor that will introduce themselves prior to swimming classes starting and will go over water safety skills early and often. Baby swim lessons are not just for the infant, parents are students and the curriculum should incorporate parent skill development as well.

Finally, you should make sure that the school offers a schedule that is convenient for you and your family. Lifeguard LI has an instructor to teach parent and tot private and group lessons 5 days a week. With these factors in mind, you can be sure to find a swim school that is right for your children no matter what the chlid's age is.

4. How often should I attend swim lessons with my baby to get the most benefit out of them?

There are a lot of factors a parent should consider when deciding how often your little one should attend swim lessons. First, you need to take into account your child's age and skill level. Young children just starting out may need more frequent lessons in order to make the most progress. Skills are developed more rapidly in a private lesson setting, however a good teacher will be able to teach skills in a group setting almost as effectively.

Alternatively, if your children are older or already has some swimming experience, they may be able to get by with fewer lessons. You should also consider your budget and schedule when making your decision. If you can only afford to bring your child to swim lessons once a week, that's perfectly fine. The important thing is that you make sure they're getting quality instruction and practice time.

Ultimately, there is no perfect answer when it comes to how often your child should attend swim lessons. It all depends on their individual needs and circumstances. However, as long as you're keeping these factors in mind, you should be able to find a lesson schedule that works best for your family.

Get Started Today!

Ever wonder how often your little one should be taking swim lessons? Find out in our recent post "How often should your child take swim lessons?"

No matter what the child's age, skills learned in swim lessons will benefit them for a lifetime. Your swim teacher should be experienced and certified in teaching infant lessons, as well as breath control skills and floating skills. Parents should look for schools that advertise mommy and me swim programs for ages 6-36 months old, with an instructor who takes the time to introduce themselves and go over water safety skills prior to class starting.

The school you choose should also offer a class schedule that is convenient for you and your family. With these factors in mind, you should consider beginning your search for a program with Lifeguard LI and enroll your student today!


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Steve Grella is a father of two young boys. He is a Police Detective, EMT, lifeguard trainer and swim instructor, who brings over 20 years of knowledge and expertise in safety and service. He has dedicated his life to educating students in vital lifesaving training and now strives to provide expert resources to arm you with the skills and training to one day save a life if called upon.

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