Last week Avi, Tucker, and Apollo participated in FREE swimming lessons.
Safety Around Water at the YMCA
Our local YMCA is giving free Safety Around Water lessons to kids ages 5-11. The best part? My three were the only ones signed up during their slot, so the teacher was able to work with each one of them individually.
Do you see Apollo, in the pool? with a complete stranger? A year ago he had so much anxiety he wouldn’t get off of my lap if we were in public and he was scared of our floor. I can not believe how much progress he has made in the last year.
Safe in the Water
I am happy to say that Avi and Tucker are both now considered safe in the water. This is a huge relief to me because I love to take my kids swimming. Neither one have had formal lessons, but could swim a bit. Having a week of lessons with an instructor has been great.
Tucker has learned to float confidently (and safely) on his back. He work on the breast stroke, freestyle and even the butterfly. He made huge progress!
Apollo Loved the Challenge of Swimming Lessons
Apollo worked so hard for his instructor. Just look at him listening intently and practicing his breathing and blowing bubbles. This is a far cry from the kid he was last year.
I didn’t say anything to his instructor about his health challenges. I was poolside for every lesson, so it didn’t seem necessary. He exerted himself and was breathing hard from his work. His instructor kept trying to get him to stop and rest because he was so out of breath but he didn’t want to rest.
[He is given clearance by his doctors to self-regulate and push himself as hard as he wants. This isn’t a safety issue, it’s just part of his unique airway.]
Avi made progress as well. She struggles with anxiety and following directions, so this was a challenge for her. I am happy to say she is a better swimmer and floater after her lessons.
It was so amazing to see Apollo stick his entire face in the water and swim (he is swimming a bit without the pool noodle, but I didn’t take my camera on the last day).
It was actually kind of funny; kind of sad. His instructor said on day two, “we are going to work on regulating that breathing!” I got a private chuckle out of that…yeah, you and all of his doctors too.
And on a more serious note, it was interesting to observe and see that he did have trouble coordinating his breathing…it made me think about how he has made his biggest strides in eating once he was in regular speech therapy in school. He was also breathing much harder than he usually does. He no longer gets completely out of breath from playing, so it was interesting to see how short of breath he got swimming.
I was able to sign Apollo up for another week of free Safety in Water classes, this time in an indoor pool. After that, I will likely sign him up for more formal (paid) lessons. He loved the swimming lessons and it will be a huge relief to me when my youngest child can swim.
Have your kids taken swimming lessons? I took them at the YMCA when I was about six…after my older brother (who didn’t know how to swim) jumped in the deep end of a pool at Disneyland and was rescued by a teenage girl. After we got home, my parents signed us all up.
Safe Water and Swimming Resources for Kids