Parents and caregivers, this one is for you. You signed up for swimming lessons, and you’ve watched us coach your children in class after class. Now you might be asking yourself how to follow up on what the coaches taught? What kind of swim drills can you work on as parents and caregivers to reinforce the lessons learned? As a mother myself, we live at the pool in the summer, so it is essential to ensure my child continues to progress, even after the class is over.
If your child/athlete is already comfortable in the water, use the following drills to build on the swimming skills being taught in class naturally.
Swim Drills For Parents and Caregivers
First, you can do two minutes of warm-up drills, either to the side or between two adults in the water. One hand under the armpit, one on the tush for the push.
Next, do 90 seconds of drop drills. Depending on your child’s age and skill level, this can be reduced and phased out, and this portion of the time used for the third drill below.
- First, hold your swimmer facing you by the armpits as you were shown in class. Put your child’s feet and knees into the water about 18-24 inches from the side.
- Instruct the child to swim to the side.
- Count 1-2-3- and release the child.
- Do this again, with your child facing the side of the pool.
- Turn your child 90 degrees and drop him or her in with only their feet in the water.
- Turn your child another 90 degrees and repeat around the clock.
- Work on having your child put their toes over the edge and jump in on their own.
- Keep your hand below the child’s knees when they jump into the water. If they do not jump far enough, they may hit the cement side of the pool. To avoid this, be ready with your hands below the student’s knees so you can protect them by pushing them out into the water.
Finally, work in three to five minutes of stroke development.
- Put your child on a step.
- Walk back to a distance you know they can swim.
- Tell them to swim to you.
- You should be down in the water with only your chin above the water as the child pushes off the step.
- Make sure your child pushes off quietly, no splashing.
- Keep your hands stretched out and down 18-24 inches in the water.
- As your child swims to you, bring your hand into your body. When he or she can almost touch you, reach out and pick them up under the armpits. Increase the distance 18-24 inches after each successful swim.
Just a few final reminders. Keep these practice swims short when developing new swim skills, no more than ten minutes. And don’t use flotation devices at all! Your child will naturally progress with their swim skills using these drills. And if this blog post sounds like Greek to you, make sure you go ahead and sign your child up for our premium swim lessons so they can be safe, successful, and confident in the water.
Molly is a member of our creative team, mom of four water-loving babies, and a fierce advocate for CPR training and really early swim instruction.