WWYD: Swim lessons and PT relatated — The Bump
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WWYD: Swim lessons and PT relatated

N jsut finished up a month of swim lessons. He was the crier.  It was pure drama, he'd be having fun, realize he's in a pool, start crying and then go back to having fun.  Since we've been working more on potty training, today he announced he had to go.  And so he learned he can get out of the pool during swim class.  It was the worst crying after the potty trip.

His teacher is awesome--very gentle, but not coddling.  When he cried about getting back in the pool after going potty, she matter of factly said "your mommy said you went, let's swim" and that was it.

Next session starts Monday. I'm tempted to cancel it because
a) no guaratee of the same teacher and somer of the younger girls likely aren't "tough" enough for him
b) it kills outdoor play for the day
c) I'm afraid he'll pull the potty thing everyday and
d) the pool bathroom grosses me out.

On the other hand, I want him to know how to swim (but how often will he be swimming between Sept and June)

Well now the answer seems obvious.  Someone tell me to keep him in swim.


Re: WWYD: Swim lessons and PT relatated

  • eh, I don't think it matters much either way.  He cannot learn how to "swim" at 2 yrs old.  To me it is more important that they have frequent but POSITIVE exposure to water.   It sounds like his drama is not about fear (since you say he's having a lot of fun in between drama) so I might stick it out in hopes that he learns the drama isn't getting him anywhere.  But if you decide that it's not worth the hassle I don't think it'll effect his ability to learn to swim at all. He'll be a completely different kid next summer and maybe more ready. 

    We just go to the pool and play 'cause I cannot afford Waterbabies (love them) and cannot tolerate the mind-numbing boredom of the other parent-tot classes we've tried.  

     EDIT:  Oops, just realized he's almost three.  Still, I don't think you need to push lessons strictly for the skills at that age. 

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  • It is more about water safety at that age. Just getting them use to the water. Although you can absolutely learn how to swim at two years old. Maybe wait it out another month or so and take him now and then without the formal swim class. That way he is getting use to the water. Take him to the bathroom before you go to the pool and tell him that is the only time you get to go to the bathroom during swim. But some kids really just hate the water from birth until old. Maybe he will like it when he is a little older!
  • I would give him a break. Let him enjoy playing in the water with you... sprinkler, kiddie pool, wading at the beach... not lessons. Who knows what it is... might be the water or it could be the structure. Whatever it is, he is not ready for that environment. I think that he's better in the long run experiencing water without tears.

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  • For me, it's more of a safety issue.  I'd keep doing it, but I get how frustrating it must be.  Maybe try it another session and see if it gets better.
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  • We just had this happen.  Ray San was good the first lesson and the next three it went progressively downhill with tons of crying and drama.  We just kept going back and the last 3 classes he was fine... laughing and having a great time.  We just really tried to talk up how much fun swimming is and how we need him to learn so he can continue to play in the water and we also watched swimming on tv.  I personally would stick with it a little longer, but it is your sanity!!


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  • If it was me, I would take him back to swimming lessons.  Nothing is to say, taking a break from lessons won't make it worse. I would take him to the bathroom before you get in the pool and if he has to go during the class take him and when he is finished say the same thing the teacher did to him and get back in the water.  You might even give the new teacher a heads up when the new session starts.
  • It sounds lik you really want him to swim?  We go off and on lessons and instead of doing group lessons have switched to private lessons.  He gets more out of it and we do it every other week so we aren't having to go to swimming every weekend.  What about doing another activity for a little while and then go back to swimming?
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  • FWIW, we're holding off on actual swim lessons until the fall when the weather turns icky.  For now, we're using any summer swim opportunities to continue teaching Madelyn about water safety.

    I don't think two or so months of holding off on formal lessons for N would make a huge difference in the grand scheme of learning to swim.

    So, maybe hold off till cooler (ha - that's funny in and of itself....how much cooler of a summer can we freaking get?!?!) weather?  I always thought that swim lessons were a good thing to look forward too when it's crappy outside.

  • image IdahoGirl:

    So, maybe hold off till cooler (ha - that's funny in and of itself....how much cooler of a summer can we freaking get?!?!) weather?  I always thought that swim lessons were a good thing to look forward too when it's crappy outside.

    That?s what we decided to do.  It his too warm and humid in there if it?s over 70 outside and if it?s over 70, I want to be outside!  We?ll go back after he has his tubes out. He better be potty trained by then!

  • Ben stopped liking swimming lessons at that age too.  I tihnk it's a control issue.  I chose to stop.  I didn't want swimming to be a chore or feel like a negative thing for him.  Very few kids that age will really learn how to swim enough to be "safe" in the water at that age anyway.... He should feel comfortable with the pool and understand enough that you never go in without your mom, etc... But you can do that by just going to the pool and playing in the water.  If the structure of the class is stressful for him, then wait til next summer.  I haven't gotten Ben back into lessons but he's asking for them now, so I think I really need to start taking him to the pool!!
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