Monday, August 17, 2015

Infant Swim: Why So Early?

Parents often ask us why we recommend starting swim lessons at 2 months. Those of you who know me know that I could go on for hours describing the many reasons why earlier is better when it comes to swim lessons, but here's the "short list":

Reflex: Infants are born with many reflexes. The startle reflex (or Moro reflex) is one that causes babies to inhale (perfect for breath control underwater!). By blowing in the baby's face, we are able to take advantage of this natural reflex when submerging infants. This reflex doesn't last forever, and typically disappears around 7 months. It's a shame to miss this excellent window that mother nature gives us.

Bonding: There are few "activities" parents can do with their non-mobile infant. Swim class provides a myriad of sensory stimuli including eye contact and skin to skin contact. LPB provides a safe, clean and warm environment for parents and babies to connect.

Sleep: In our many years of teaching infant swim, we consistently receive parent feedback (and gratitude) about how well their babies sleep after swim class. All that sensory stimulation makes a growing baby sleepy (and hungry!).

Tummy Time: In swim class we primarily hold infants in a prone position. Teachers will teach you how to properly support your baby's head, but we find that infants tend to hold their heads up very well in the water. We also practice tummy time on the magic carpet, further strengthening neck and back muscles.

Socialization: Songs and games on the magic carpet encourage infants to connect with their fellow classmates. Moms and Dads get to make new friends too, sharing stories about how much (or little) sleep they got the night before. We've had many LPB playgroups form over the years from our Baby and Me program.

That's the short list, but for those wanting to learn more about the benefits of infant swim, click here.

Still not sure? Give us a call and book your FREE trial lesson and decide for yourself!

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