The Benefits of Caregivers Taking an Active Role in Swim Lessons

Lisa Zarda, USSSA Executive Director

August 30 2022

Being actively involved in your child’s learn to swim experience brings with it a number of benefits. There are several providers that offer parent/caregiver and child lessons starting as early as 2 to 3 months of age. These lessons provide a great opportunity to set aside the distractions of life and spend some quality time with your new little one. It provides an opportunity for bonding with the child while setting the stage for a lifetime of swimming. Many swim instructors report that starting a child in lessons at a young age makes instruction of swimming skills easier as the child grows and develops.

As the child gets older, and the caregiver is no longer in the water for instruction, it is still important to take notice and watch the swim lesson. By staying engaged and observing what the child is learning, you can talk about the experience with your child after the lesson and help to reinforce what they are learning. Your swim lesson provider should also provide you with important water safety information and tips on things to talk to your child about to keep them safer around water. You will want to model safe behavior in and around water. Your child will learn more from watching what you do, than just listening to what you say.

It is important to note that when your child is in the water with the instructor, that you do not step in or shout direction from the pool deck. It is important that the child looks to the instructor for direction and that the instructor has the ability to focus on the tasks at hand. As an instructor, they understand the steps needed to develop skills in an age appropriate way, as well as the different approaches needed to customize the experience for different types of learners. Trust in the process and observe without distraction. Your reward will be a growing independence and more confident swimmer.

Knowing that practice makes prepared, take your child to swim lessons on a consistent basis. This will build the foundation for a life long enjoyment of the water and minimize a regression of skills. Regression can happen, it can be a part of the child’s development as their body and mind grow and develop with age, but consistency can help.

Taking an active role in your child’s swim lessons can be rewarding for both of you, and result in many hours of enjoyment of the water.

Find a swim school near you at

Share on Social Media

Share on facebook
Share on google
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin