Many people are anxious to know how fast you can teach a child to swim, but the answer is not that simple. Different aged children are capable of different levels of skills in the water so expectations need to be realistic. Even the definition of “swimming” will change in relation to the capability of the child at a given age.
As a rough guide this is what a child is capable of at each age. Remember, every child is different and will learn at their own pace.
- 3 Months - Baby is able to have water poured over the head
- 6 Months – Baby is capable of a short underwater immersion
- 12 Months – Baby is happy with a quick underwater swim
- 18 Months – Toddler can move through the water for short distances using their legs
- 24 Months – Toddler can get to the side of the pool from a sitting entry
- 30 Months – Toddler can swim face down for very short distances
- 36 Months – Toddler can get to the side of the pool from a standing entry
From age three most children are ready to learn standard swimming technique. This usually starts with floating on their front and breathing to the side by rolling.
By using a swim float like the AquaPlane the child can be supported as they take their first steps towards learning the correct arm and leg movements for front crawl. By helping the child to float the AquaPlane can accelerate the learning process by allowing the child to build their water confidence and find the correct swimming position.
Once a child has mastered front crawl then floating and kicking while on the back is the next stage. Again AquaPlane can help here as by removing the straps it can be used as a front float to assist in buoyancy and the adoption of the correct swimming position.
As water confidence increased between ages four to six, the child should be encouraged to swim more independently and for longer distances. The use of a kickboard allows single elements of swimming stroke to be developed and the correct muscles strengthened by isolating either the arms or the legs. AquaPlane can also help here, as a handy kickboard.
By age six a child should be capable of swimming all strokes over full lengths of the pool. It’s important to make lessons fun and engaging, and an element of play is vital in keeping children interested. AquaPlane, with its unique aircraft shape, is an ideal toy for messing around in the pool after a swimming lesson.
The frequency of practice will have a big impact on how fast a child learns to swim. Repetition really is the mother of skill, and the more the child swims the faster they will progress to becoming competent.
Discover more about the AquaPlane swim float here.