Learning to swim is a huge milestone for a child and an important life skill. Not only is swimming fun to do, having the skills to be safe in and near water is essential for a child’s safety. What is the best age for a child to learn how to swim? We have some recommendations based on our experiences with a near-drowning and a little help from Upparent, our sponsor for this post.
After my daughter’s near-drowning several years ago, swim lessons have been a frequently discussed topic in our home. Other moms often ask me what the best age is to learn to swim.
The fact is, my daughter had not had swim lessons early enough. She was young, just over two, and I do not know if swim lessons would have been effective enough to prevent her accident, but it is something that I will always wonder. Could it have prevented her near-drowning and the trauma that all of us experienced as a result of that?
My older boys didn’t learn how to swim until they were five or six. That worked fine for us with them and we didn’t have any issues, but I didn’t know then how risky it was to not teach basic swimming skills while they were younger.
Now that my girls are all swimming (at ages 4 and 6), I’m enjoying our time in the water a lot more.
When is the best age for kids to learn to swim?
The answer to this question is, as soon as possible. The sooner kids can learn at least basic survival swimming skills, the more likely they are to survive if the unexpected happens. It just takes a second for accidents to happen.
That being said, I have known very few one-year-olds who can swim unassisted without aggressive survival swim lessons. As a parent, you have to decide how aggressive you want to be with swim lessons.
For me, even after our experience, I still made the choice not to push my kids to swim before they were ready. The survival swim lessons I watched with babies under 2 were hard to watch. I wasn’t willing to do that with my twins. Some kids (and parents) may be okay with that. It’s a decision only you can make.
We started the twins in swim lessons just before their third birthday, and they picked up some basic swimming skills right away.
The right answer for me, personally, for the best time to start swim lessons, is sometime between the ages of two and three.
Where do you go for parenting advice?
So many parenting questions, like this one, are hard to answer. With 6 kids, I’ve often wished for some sort of manual to let me know what the “right” way to do things is.
After almost 15 years as a mom, I still haven’t found the “right” way to do anything, but I have discovered that asking other moms, and sharing in their experiences, has helped me make the best decisions for my family. The first place I turn when I have a parenting question is experienced moms that I trust.
Sometimes it can be hard to track down someone with the experience that you need. When that happens, the internet has been my lifeline.
A new startup called Upparent is putting all of these great conversations we have as moms together in one place. I’ve spent the past week exploring the site and it is such an amazing place to get family-friendly recommendations about things to do, places to go, and products to try.
The information is sorted by lists and polls, so you can easily find the information you are looking for. I found some great advice when I was considering the question of the best time for a child to learn to swim from this poll, and even though I know what my current opinion is, I can’t wait to see what other moms say.
My favorite part is the strength of the local resources they have, and I suspect those will only grow as time goes on. You can just hop on and find the best places to take swimming lessons in your city, the best toys to buy for a birthday gift, and just about anything else that you need to know. The information is dynamic, and parents can add recommendations, vote, and comment so there’s always new information being added.
I’ve been a mom long enough to know that I don’t have it all figured out. I suspect I’ll start to have a clue about what I’m doing by the time my youngest leaves for college . . . hopefully.
In the meantime, I’m glad that there are amazing resources out there like Upparent, and I’m excited to see where this site goes. Check out Upparent and see what recommendations they have in your local area. And enter below for great prizes from Upparent!
This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Upparent.