Christmas is coming, and as we pivot more towards investing in time and experiences with our children, we’d love to suggest swimming lessons for kids, especially children on the autism spectrum. I know we’ve talked at length here on the blog about the benefits, but just as a refresher, how does swimming help children with autism? In short, swimming can help children on the autism spectrum improve speech, coordination, social skills, self-esteem, and cognitive processing. Additionally, swimming can help relax muscles and decrease stress. (Autism Spectrum Disorder Foundation)
The Oct 2020 edition of Autism Parenting Magazine expounds on the benefits. “Imagine there was a way to improve your child’s concentration, mental alertness, responsiveness, and peace of mind in 30-40 minutes. The day-to-day challenges faced by autistic children like anxiety, concentration, overstimulation, and social interaction can all be improved.”
For individuals with an ASD diagnosis, the sensory experience of being immersed adds a layer of calm that can’t be duplicated anywhere else.
“In the water, everything feels calmer. It’s like all the noise, feelings, and business of the outside world just stop. The feeling of the water is interesting, and the way light moves through it can be fascinating.”
In addition to all of the benefits of learning to swim and having autism, you might also stop your child from being another statistic! It’s estimated that one out every 59 individuals has an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), and according to a 2012 study in Pediatrics, 49% of children with ASD have a tendency to wander or bolt from safe settings. Individuals with ASD are often attracted to water yet have little to no sense of danger. Drowning is a leading cause of death in children with ASD. – (NAA – National Autism Association). Give the gift of lifesaving swim lessons this season and help your child become “One With 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.