The right age to teach children to swim is a subject of heavy debate. Many experts believe children should be provided with swimming lessons as early as possible while others feel lessons should be reserved for older children.
But which of these schools of thought are right?
The Value Of Teaching Children To Swim
The Association of American Pediatrics used to state that the right age to teach children to swim was age four, but they revised the number to age 1 after research showed that rates of drowning were reduced among preschoolers that took swimming lessons.
Some experts believe children do not really become proficient swimmers until after age 6, which means that lessons may be most effective around age 4 or 5. There is a concern that children may be too complacent around water when they learn to swim prior to age 4.
The reality is that there is no medical consensus on the right age for swimming lessons.
What is known is that it is necessary to teach children to swim. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), drowning is the cause of almost 4,000 deaths in the U.S. each year with about 20 percent of the victims being children under the age of 14.
The Importance of Safety
Swimming lessons cannot make anyone immune to drowning. Even after children learn to swim, parents should provide close supervision when they are around water.
Along with watching them, it is strongly recommended that pools and pool decks be kept clear of toys when no adults are nearby. Toys in or around a pool may tempt small children to get into the water.
It is never too late to learn how to swim, regardless of age. The important thing is for your child to develop their skills in the water and learn to enjoy it.
At the Amarillo Town Club, we primarily focus on teaching the 4-year-old age group how to swim and getting those younger than 4 comfortable with the water. We offer different levels of classes based on your child's age and skill. All of our classes are taught by a certified, experienced swim instructor.
To learn more about swimming lessons, contact us today.