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Babies and Swimming
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Guide to how mommies can introduce babies to water at the comfort of your own home

It is not advisable to bring your baby into the swimming pool until he or she is at least three months old.

The chlorine and chemicals are too aggressive for the little one, which could give you baby skin irritation.

Having said this, there is still much that can be done to prepare your baby for his first “dive” into the pool….starting in the safety and comfort of your own bathroom.

Contributed by Koen Verhoef from Swim Centre Verhoef www.aquaducks.com.sg


AquaDucks™ has unique, world class Babies and Learn to Swim teaching programmes specially designed for your childs individual needs and interests.

 

Dear Parents,

Here are a few tips in helping your baby enjoy the water and be able to swim at a very young age. I hope this information will be useful to you, so that you and your family will experience even greater pleasure in the water!!

Subject : BABIES 0 TO 4 MONTHS

It is not advisable to bring your baby into the swimming pool until he or she is at least three months old.

The chlorine and chemicals are too aggressive for the little one, which could give you baby skin irritation.

Having said this, there is still much that can be done to prepare your baby for his first “dive” into the pool….starting in the safety and comfort of your own bathroom.

A) Keep in mind that your baby is no stranger to water, swimming in the mother’s womb for many months. After birth the baby’s first touch of water, is in the bathtub, during their daily washing session. Make sure the water is of a good temperature, not too hot, not too cold. Talk to your baby in a soft reassuring voice. Maybe even sing some songs while bathing.

B) At four weeks of age you can start with the first “lesson”. Parent and child go under the shower.

Be very careful to hold your baby properly (he can be very slippery) i.e. one arm under the buttocks, the other arm across the back supporting the head and neck, holding the baby against your chest. Now you are ready to start….

• STEP 1

Let the shower water run down the shoulders and back of your baby, his head resting on your shoulder. While doing so, sing or talk soothingly to your baby until he or she is relaxed.

• STEP 2

Now, it is time to take your baby completely under the shower. The back of the head faces the shower. Count gently 1,2,3 one thousand and bring your baby’s head under the showers and stay there for about two seconds, then slowly bring him/her out.

• STEP 3

Repeat what you did in Step 1 for a while letting the waters run down the shoulders and back, talking soothingly to your baby. When you feel he is ready, bring him completely under the shower again, making sure you always count to three before bringing his head under water. Your baby of course cannot count, but you will be amazed at how fast he will recognize the sound, and will hold his breath before going under. When you first try this, don’t bring your baby completely under for more than three to four times, as he gets older and more used to it, you can built it up to six to ten times, staying under the shower for three to four seconds at a time.

C) Don’t underestimate your baby’s instinct. If you feel nervous about bringing your baby’s head under the shower, your baby will be scared and think something is wrong. On the other hand, if you feel relaxed about it, your baby will feel the same, and be happy. So make sure you have the right frame of mind before you try this!!

D) If you have succeeded in the above, and practiced this on a regular basis (say two to three times a week) your baby whilst using the same trigger words as under the shower will be ready to go completely under water in the swimming pool by the time he is three to four months old, and will be quite happy doing so!!

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