Floating Is an Important Skill for New Swimmers
Floating is easier for some kids to master
If you’re a swimmer, you know how easy it is to lie back and gently rest on the water’s surface. You may find it comforting, even relaxing to float along with the current.
It may come as a surprise to learn that floating can be scary for some kids. It means letting go of the railing, ladder, or instructor – and that’s unsettling to anyone who’s not comfortable in the water.
Floating is an important skill, especially for children. It can help even small children stay safer in and around the water, and it’s one of the most critical water safety skills.
So, practicing floating will be a key part of any lesson plan for new swimmers.
Here are the essentials of learning to float and practice with your child.
The importance of floating
Here’s why it’s crucial that children learn to float early on: floating gives them a tool to avoid panic in an unsafe water situation.
If a child finds them self in water that is too deep or rough for them to swim comfortably, their first reaction may be to panic and kick their arms and legs. This increases their chance of swallowing water and getting tired out quickly.
Alternatively, floating skills can help them stay calm, lie back, and breathe freely until they are moved to a shallow area of the pool.
This skill can make them safer in the water, and help protect them from unnecessary fatigue and fear.
Floating also encourages proper breathing techniques, which are useful for swimming in general and calming in an uncertain moment.
This is why our swimming instruction always includes lessons on floating. It gives kids confidence and security in knowing that they can float on top of the water if they need to.
The science of floating
One thing to remember about floating is that it isn’t the same for everyone. Some people float naturally as soon as they get in the water. Others may find it more challenging.
The reason for this lies in the science of floating. Simply put, a person’s body composition will determine their degree of buoyancy.
Some people have greater bone mass, muscle tissue, and fluid in their bodies – this makes them much less buoyant than someone with less dense volume.
So, if your child is struggling to float or doesn’t float right off the bat, it may simply be because they have a less buoyant body composition.
With a little help, they can learn floating techniques. Remember, it takes practice. Our qualified instructors can teach a child how to use their lungs as natural buoys.
Is your child having trouble floating?
It may seem strange to you if your child is having trouble floating, especially if they are making good progress with other swimming tasks.
Many times, the reason a child is stressed by floating is that it requires them to relax and let go of safeguards. Helping them to feel confident and safe in the water will help them to relax and master floating once and for all.
Floating is an important skill to master
New swimmers, especially young children, will benefit from the time and attention you devote to teaching floating skills. In addition to making them safer in the water, swimming skills are a great introduction to other sports and activities.
These skills can help them gain confidence and self-esteem and impact them for the rest of their life.
At Ocaquatics, our goal is to teach families to love swimming and become safer, more comfortable, and more responsible in the water. If you’re interested in learning more about how we can help your child, call us today at 305-969-SWIM (7946) or by visiting us online to learn more about our year-round swimming lessons.