Learning how to swim is not only a life skill, it's great fun too. Packing in all the right things helps make the experience stress-free for you and your child. As your child progresses, what to take with you will change from baby swimming lesson essentials to the ideal swimming kit for kids. If you've been wondering what should go in the bag for your child's first lesson, read on for our top 5 essentials.
Top 5 Things to Bring to Your Swimming Lessons
Gathering what you need for swim lessons and packing before the time helps you and your child arrive on the day feeling calm and relaxed. Packing early helps you avoid the last-minute hunt for lost goggles or that elusive swim cap. Swimming lessons work best when your child is peaceful. Rushing may be stressful for them and make them feel anxious. To make that first-time swim easier, here are the things we recommend.
Your child's swimsuit should fit them snuggly, without straps that are too tight, or elastic that pinches around their legs or arms. A clean-cut design works well for swimming lessons as it helps the instructor see exactly what their bodies are doing and hold them safely. The Pink Cockatoo Long Sleeve Girls Zip Swimmers are a great option for girls.
Boardshorts work well for boys as they have a mesh inner for a comfortable fit and an adjustable waist tie that keeps the shorts firmly in place. The Navy Cockatoo Kids' Boardshorts are a great mix of fun design and a practical fit that boys will love.
2. A Swim Cap, Hairband, or Hair Ties
A swim cap is ideal for keeping wet hair out of faces which is especially helpful for those kids with longer hair. If your child isn't keen on wearing a swimming cap, make sure to pack in spare hair ties and clips or a hairband. If the pool rules state that a cap is essential and your little one fights wearing one, try different caps, such as those made from lycra or a colourful design that your child loves to help them get used to wearing one.
3. Swim Nappy
Swim nappies are perfect for young swimmers who aren't yet toilet trained. A swim nappy enables the lesson to continue without interruptions. A nappy designed for swimming won't absorb as much pool water as a regular nappy would, but still contains all the things nappies are meant to. Find a swimsuit that holds their swim nappy in place comfortably and securely without being too tight.
A fluffy towel waiting for your little swimmer when they finish their lesson will keep them warm once they're out of the water. A towel helps prevent excess water puddles which may be a slipping hazard. Some kids like the feeling of a wearable hooded towel that they can put on and be cosy & warm as soon as they come out of the water. It also lets them use their hands without the towel falling off. If your child is showering at the swim school, remember to pack two towels, one for after swimming and a dry one for after showering.
5. Swim Bag
Have a designated swimming bag that you can pre-pack to save time and stress. A good swimming bag has a waterproof compartment for the wet items to be stored in after each lesson. Compartments for things like water bottles, snacks and underwear are nice to have to keep everything inside organised.
Different Essentials for Different Lessons
From your baby's first swimming lesson, you'll see the progress your child makes. As their water skills grow, their swimming lesson plans and needs will change. Apart from the essentials above, here are some additional things to consider for each stage of swimming lessons for kids.
Baby Swimming Lesson Essentials
If you'll be in the pool with your baby for the first swimming lesson, consider wearing a floppy t-shirt as this gives their little hands something to grip on. The best swimsuit for swimming lessons is a one-piece swimsuit, such as the Green Cockatoo Unisex Zip Swimmer, as it will sit comfortably throughout the lesson. A snug-fitting one-piece makes their little bodies easier to hold onto in the water.
Beginner swimmers sometimes feel more comfortable using a nose clip that prevents water from getting up their nose. Swimmers who are prone to ear infections may be advised to wear earplugs. Consider packing in some snacks for your beginner swimmer to munch on afterwards as swimming is hungry work!
Intermediate swimmers that are starting to learn strokes and swimming techniques may benefit from wearing goggles. Goggles are helpful to prevent eye irritation from the water and can help your child see underwater if part of their lesson includes retrieval games.
Intermediate swimmers may train with a kickboard that allows them to practice kicking while providing buoyancy for their upper bodies.
At this level, advanced swimmers may be swimming competitively. The swimming coach assesses where a child's style can be fine-tuned to help them achieve faster times. They may train using different pieces of swimming equipment such as pull buoys, flippers or hand paddles. These tools provide extra resistance which intensifies muscle training or focuses training on specific muscle groups to improve swimming skills.
Cheeky’s Swimming Lesson Staples
The most important item on the baby swimming lesson essentials list is a good quality swimsuit. Cheeky's offers a colourful range of happy designs that will make kids even more excited about swimming time. Kit your child out in our Blue Turtle Swimmers and he'll be ready for some splashing fun, while girls love the Pink Koala Girls Long Sleeve Zip Swimmers. For stylish swimming lesson accessories that offer protection from the sun before and after lessons, you can get a hat to match the swimsuit.