YMCA Healthy Living Magazine, powered by n4 food and health Spring 2017 - Page 18
WHAT AGE SHOULD
TO SWIM ?
YMCA offers swimming lessons for all ages. Here’s what you need to know.
recent report by Royal Life Saving revealed that last
year 280 people drowned in Australian waterways
and unfortunately, 12 per cent were children aged 0
to 14 years. Despite the ongoing education and awareness
around water, we still need to ensure children are kept safe
around and in the water and one of the best ways to improve
a child’s water safety is to teach them how to swim.
So at what age should this start, and how many lessons
should they have?
Janelle Falkingham, Aquatic Development Specialist at
YMCA Victoria says, ‘parents can introduce their young
children to water through positive bath experiences and
water play in the home.’
At the YMCA, formal swimming lessons are available to
children from as young as six months of age. Janelle adds,
‘these parent and child classes involve activities, songs and
games that you and your child will love, and these classes
are a fantastic way to bond with your baby.’
Lessons are also available for infants, pre-schoolers, teens and
adults, and in each instance they are a lo t more than just learning
how to move through water. ‘We offer a well-rounded approach
YMCA HEALTHY LIVING MAGAZINE SPRING 2017
with a focus on water safety and personal survival along with
learning the traditional skills of swimming,’ says Janelle.
YMCA programs use repetition to ensure that your child
practices their skills over and over again – every time they
participate in a class. You can make a big difference to their
progress and overall experience by just being there.
Janelle offers these helpful tips to parents and carers: ‘give
them continuous positive feedback as they achieve goals,
and don’t compare your child’s progress to others, as every
child is different and will evolve at different rates.’
Swimming lessons teach essential life skills and Janelle
recommends that families take a long-term approach for your
child’s development. You can maximise your child’s learning
by offering experiences outside their lessons by regularly
visiting the pool, beach or other waterway. Just remember to
always supervise your children when they’re around water.
xxxxx to try a swimming
lesson at a YMCA centre?
Did you know that 57,562 children were enrolled
in YMCA swimming lessons last year? YMCA is the
leading provider of swimming and water safety classes
in Victoria, and works hard to ensure every child has the
opportunity to learn essential skills in a friendly and
supportive environment. For full details or to find your
nearest aquatic centre visit victoria.ymca.org.au