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Summer Swimming: Practice makes perfect

Our spring swim lessons end on May 27th, and we’re gearing up for summer lessons. Starting in June, we’ll have a variety of group, semi private, and private classes available for those looking for summer swim options. We’ve had a number of parents that want to take advantage of the extra pool time this summer and have asked our instructors for a few tips on what they can work on to further their child’s swim skills this summer.

First, start with safety. Last week, we talked about water safety and how to promote it this summer with your family. Let’s do a quick recap:

1. Never swim alone.
2. Swim with a buddy.
3. Swim in a safe area.
4. Look before you leap.

We want to remind parents that passing a deep water test or having a year’s worth of swim lessons is not a substitute for parental supervision. Kids get excited and impulsive, and they sometimes end up tired or out of bounds. Until you are certain that your child can make good decisions about the water, please keep an eye on them. Spend some time talking about being in the water and being in a place where they can stay relaxed and have fun.

You can also work with them on a few skills that all skill levels practice in lessons. Swimming is a skill that requires practice, and playing in the water doesn’t always mean that children are practicing good swim skills. Here are a few that you can do with your child:

1. Blow bubbles. We never, ever hold our breath while we are swimming. Hold your child’s hands, have them go underwater and slowly blow bubbles. You want them to come up for air, take one breath and go underwater again. Repeat this a few times. “Bobs” are an essential building block to every stroke and swim skill.

2. Head position. We want to keep our neck in line with the spine when we’re swimming. For freestyle, our face should be parallel with the bottom of the pool. For backstroke, our chins should be up looking at the sky/ceiling.

3. Streamline. Put your hands together, one on top of the other, and extend your arms above your head. Your arms should fall to the back of your ears. This is the arm position for streamlining. Have your child keep their arms like this and kick on their front or back to practice their streamline. Remember to look for good head positioning!

4. Experiment with floating and flipping. Have your child float on their front, and then flip on their back. Or, have them float on their back, and flip on their front. We want to make sure they roll their body to the side and keep their spine straight (...we want to keep those shoulders and hips in check!). Have them practice doing a somersault in the water. Pro tip: blow bubbles while flipping. Kids like to hold their breath and end up with a nose filled with water.

5. Have fun! Swimming should be fun, not a chore. You don’t have to run a swim lesson, so find a fun way to work on these skills. The more your child is in the water having fun (and practicing), the stronger they will become at swimming. 

Want to know more about our summer swim lessons? Email us at info@mpswimschool.com or call us at 410-433-8300.




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