Summer is here and this is the time for families to register their children for swimming lessons. After 20+ years spent as an aquatics director and swim lesson instructor-trainer, let me share some ideas and tips to assist you with this important learning activity.


Regardless of your child’s swimming ability, you can play a critical role in guiding, caring for, supervising, motivating, and working with your child during the experience of participating in swim lessons.

Most communities have public or private swimming pools with a variety of aquatics programs for all ages (even adults!). Here are some things to consider when choosing the swimming facility:

  • Is the pool is indoors or outdoors? Dress appropriately and wear sunscreen.
  • Is the pool heated? Cool water is still OK to swim in.
  • What is time of day the lessons are offered? Usually classes are offered in the mornings or evenings.
  • Does the facility offer group and private lessons? Children really learn better when placed in a group situation. However, if your child has special needs, most swim programs offer private or specialized lessons tailored to the child’s needs.

It is very important to carefully review the swim lesson program offered by your leisure provider. Prepare your child for this experience by first visiting the swimming pool where the classes are held.

Tips on Placing Your Child in the Right Lesson
Many swimming programs are seasonal, meaning that lessons may only be offered in the summer months.

  • If your child has taken lessons before, you may want to repeat the last level that was completed the summer before as a review.
  • Most children remain in the same level for two or more sessions.
  • It is easier to move a child up a level than to move them down.
  • The pool staff may make the final decision in placement of your child into the most appropriate class level based on the child’s skill.
  • Do not over-schedule your child. One lesson per day is enough.

Once your child starts the swim lesson session, here are some suggestions to help you provide the best experience for your child.

  • Be on time and attend every lesson.
  • Follow the pool rules and encourage safety around any body of water.
  • During the lesson, sit in the parent viewing area so as not to distract your child.
  • Dress your child in a swim suit. Swim goggles and rashguard may be worn. Bring a towel.
  • Leave questions for the instructor for after the lesson or ask the facility director.
  • Have patience and give positive praise.
  • Provide encouragement and opportunities to practice new skills during recreational swim.

Above all, just have fun and let your child soak up the experience in this fun learning environment. Swimming is a life-long leisure activity with endless benefits.

I’m joining Debbie in Shape for Tip Tuesday. Tip-Tuesday-Link-Party-Debbie-in-Shape

19 thoughts on “Swimming Lessons: Helpful Hints for Parents

  1. I could have used this forty years ago when my sons were taking swimming lessons. Oldest, in the way of oldest children, seriously listened to instructions and followed rules. Second son, in the way of second children, first jumped in the deep end. A running jump feet first. I panicked, lifeguard dived in, son came sputtering to the top by himself. He still pretty much dives in feet first head first whichever and whatever he’s doing and some how comes up sputtering jest fine.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This would be very helpful, especially for parents new to the routine of swimming lessons. I spent my years as a swim mom with both years of lessons and then swim team. I kind of miss the quiet hour I had sitting under the umbrella at the pool while my daughter was in her lesson. I got a lot of reading done there!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Great post Terri with some important points to remember. My one year old grandson started swimming lessons at around 6 months and just loves it. His Dad takes him weekly. You can’t take anything for granted though and have to be alert always. Thanks for sharing with us at #AnythingGoes

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Terri, your post is so important and it brought back so many memories of my own childhood and swimming lessons…I was grateful to have good teachers as well as parents who were supportive and not pushy…they let me get accustomed to the water on my own time and now, I must say I’m like a fish in water! I feel alive when I hit the water….I prefer pool swimming to ocean swimming..something about the Atlantic kind of scares me! But pools are my thing and any time I get the chance, I jump in!
    Thanks again for sharing your knowledge and experience with us!
    Cheers to you my friend and happy Tuesday!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Oh swimming in Hawaii or in San Diego sounds lovely! I’d definitely sign on for that!
        Happy Tuesday my friend!

        Liked by 1 person

  5. This is an excellent post, there are so many things to consider! After reading this parents should be setup for a successful summer of swimming lessons (& the kids too of course)! Thanks for joining the Link-It To Me Link Party, I hope you will party with us again next week!

    Liked by 1 person

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