Author Topic: Crying at "baby swim" lessons  (Read 29676 times)

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Offline :: ANA ::

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Crying at "baby swim" lessons
« on: April 05, 2013, 02:55:10 am »
My husband and I are very interested in introducing our LO to swimming since he is so much into water, playing with/in/around it AND we have 2 close friends whose kids drowned  :-[.  So, even if we always keep and eye on him around water, we feel it's necessary to take him to this "baby swim" lessons, for his safety.

Thing is, as long as he's with me in the pool, he's as happy as can be but as soon as I leave him with the instructor he cries a lot.  Sometimes he cries for the whole 30min., sometimes just a little bit when we separate.
I feel awful as you can imagine, but I try to convince myself it's for his own good.

I'm always very positive about swimming, I tell him where we're going, what's going to happen, encourage him and hug him a lot when he's done. The instructor is all good and playful and patient.

A lady at the pool told me my LO is too young.  Another one told me she stopped her girl's lessons because she cried a lot.

I guess I just need some reassurance that I'm not traumatizing him or breaking our confidence bond by doing this  :-\.


Offline PaulsMom

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Re: Crying at "baby swim" lessons
« Reply #1 on: April 05, 2013, 04:21:27 am »
To me he seems a bit young to be left with the instructor.  Are you allowed to be in the pool with him during lessons?  If yes, perhaps stay in the water with him but let the instructor take him to practice kicks, or blowing bubbles, etc so he can get to know the instructor better.  Also what's his temperament?  My DS is touchy so he was very sensitive about going in without me until he was around 2 to 2.5 yrs old.

Offline Mum of PA

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Re: Crying at "baby swim" lessons
« Reply #2 on: April 05, 2013, 04:36:41 am »
Both my kiddies have been doing swimming lesson since they were 6 months old.  Here, in the classes both parent and child participate which means a parent is with the child in the pool with an instructor taking the class.  This continues until they can stand on the bottom of the pool which is usually about 3 1/2 years old, when the instructor takes the class with the kiddies without the parents.  At 21 months (I think this is how old your lo is (?)), my sensitive DD would definitely not have felt comfortable without me in the water with her and even my independent but spirited DS would have struggled without me I think. Is there any way you could be in the water with your lo kind of 'shadowing' him for the lesson while is with the instructor?  Just you being there in the water and him being able to see you and some encouraging words from you might help him a little.  It's a tricky one......

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Offline Katet

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Re: Crying at "baby swim" lessons
« Reply #3 on: April 05, 2013, 04:55:53 am »
Thing is, as long as he's with me in the pool, he's as happy as can be but as soon as I leave him with the instructor he cries a lo

Having taught toddler swim lessons, there is NO WAY I would ever expect a child under 3yo to be with the instructor unless they wanted to be. At the pool I learnt teaching they had "parent & child" classes until 3.5yo, occasionally a child under 3/3.5yo could move to an instructor only class or a child at 4yo was still in a parent & child class depending on need, quite simply because the idea was "if a child was upset in the water they did not learn to feel safe there & it made it harder for them to learn to swim"

IMHO I'd take him out of the class if it is a requirement he is in there with a teacher, research some fun games & water safety stuff (like how to reach for the side) & take him yourself if you can't find a parent child class... he will NOT gain water confidence if he is upset & so it makes it more traumatic & swimming needs to be relaxed & enjoyable.
dc1 July 03, dc2 May 05

Offline skatty

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Re: Crying at "baby swim" lessons
« Reply #4 on: April 05, 2013, 07:12:28 am »
Wow, I can't believe kids under 2 are without the parents in classes  :o For one thing kids can drown in a few centimeters of water so how can she look after multiple toddlers!! Swimming lessons at this age are not really about swimming usually, they are about water confidence so i don't think you need to worry about getting him in lessons now, he could get the same out of just going to the pool with you. My dd went swimming with DH weekly from about 6/7 months and then started "lessons" at 4, the first year was all play and fun and then this last year has been swimming, straight drills up and down the pool (she is actually really fed up of it so we are going back to DH taking her.)

Offline *Liz*

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Re: Crying at "baby swim" lessons
« Reply #5 on: April 05, 2013, 08:10:24 am »
Even my super easy going one would cry being left swimming with an instructer at that age  :-\. My more sensitive DS, goodness me, forget it!

The thing is he isn't going to learn anything if he is just crying for his Mama  :-\.

I do tend to agree with you about swimming being important. We are working pretty hard to get my DS to settle down and do lessons now, but he is 4.5. I go into the water with DD for her lesson and she is nearly 3. At 3 they can transfer into the lessons without their parents, and DD will, but she will most likely go into the same lesson as her brother so will still have someone there iyswim?

Personally I would find a lesson where you are in the water with him if that is what he needs. Round here there are loads of them like that. There is one lady that will have kids independently from age 2, one swim school from age 3, but the majority are age 4.

Offline lullaby

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Re: Crying at "baby swim" lessons
« Reply #6 on: April 07, 2013, 00:21:35 am »
When I brought my toddler swimming at that age, he clung to me all the time and cried. It's the open space and the noise...the echo of the water. He was so scared by the vastness of the water. A while later, aged 2 and 8 months, he loved it!
If the child isn't enjoying it then stop, re-introduce a while later. If you are in the water in the mean-time with him, then just stay close to him even if it means he stays on your hip all the time.