Lets face it, kids cry. Sometimes they have a good reason for doing so, and sometimes we aren’t sure what is bringing them to tears. It’s hard to watch your little one cry during swim lessons, but we know it will be temporary and that with a few tips, they’ll be smiling in the pool in no time.
Prepare your child for their swimming instructor
All of our instructor’s names and photos are on our website. Show your child their instructor and let them pick out a small toy to bring to lessons to share with them. Reassure your little one that their teacher will be with them in the water and is there to keep them safe.
Stick with it
Don’t pull your swimmer out of the water mid-lesson or quit coming to lessons altogether if they cry. Remember that swim lessons are a life-saving skill and just as important as wearing a seatbelt. If your swimmer cries throughout the duration of the lesson, their instructor can cut it short if you communicate with them prior to the lesson.
Remain calm and distract yourself
If you feel uneasy or anxious watching your little one cry, then your swimmer may pick up on that. Try to remain calm. Read a book, chat with us in the office, or smile from the sidelines to your little swimmer. You can also observe the lesson from the far side of the pool gate so your swimmer won’t be as tempted to look for you. Remind yourself that soon they will be more comfortable with their instructor and in the water and won’t have those tears.
Do not feel bad for the instructor
Sometimes we hear parents saying that they are okay with their little one crying, but they feel bad for the instructor. Don’t worry about the instructor. All of our instructors are trained and willing to establish a positive connection with your little one and will work to help your child push past their challenges.
Practice at home
Practice doing things like pouring water over their eyes, back floats and blowing bubbles at home in the bathtub with your swimmer. If they do these well, ask them if they’d like to show their swim instructor how well they can do them at their next lesson. This will give them something to look forward to on swim lesson day.
We know it’s hard to watch your little one cry during lessons. We want you to know that you are not alone. It happens often and is common for young swimmers to take some time to get acquainted with a new person in the water.
With our trained instructors, and a little bit of perseverance on your end, we are confident that your child will eventually get past their fears or anxiety, and will enjoy swim lessons. We love seeing fearful swimmers gain confidence in the water!