In fact, a child can be taught to swim since baby, because since in the womb, the baby has been used to being in the amniotic fluid for 9 months. A baby will feel cozy and warm in the amniotic fluid. Because it, the child has had an instinctive ability to move under water and are not afraid while in the water, especially in warm water temperature such as body temperature.
At the age of about four months, a baby has had a ‘diving reflex’ to prevent swallowing water while in the water. That is why at this age your baby will be very easy to trained to swim. But after his brain to function properly, this reflex will gradually disappear, so that he could not be re-learn to hold breath under water.
To start learning to swim, parents should first introduce their child to play in the bath tub or in a plastic pool. Make sure the water used is warm enough, ie at least 33 degrees Celsius, so he was not feel cold. This small pool will help introduce the sensation of being in the water.
The results of research in Melbourne, Australia, showed statistically IQ of children who are taught to swim since a baby higher than children who are not taught to swim or be taught to swim after age 5 years. The children’s IQ was measured when they were aged 10 years. Not only that, physical growth, emotional, and social even better. Other studies have shown that babies are taught to swim more easily than adults, because the baby never has the X factor such danger. After all, babies love the water so that they too would like to be invited to swim. Well, this makes it so much easier to learn to swim.
In addition, newborn babies until the age of 3 months can go straight into the water without fear of drowning, because at that age, they have a lot of reflex stepping usefulness to swim. “Stepping reflex is a reflex that accompanies one of the babies as well as grasping and walking reflex,” explained Dr. Karel from Pondok Indah Hospital.
So, if we put the baby under 3 months of age in the water, the baby will automatically move their legs like a paddle so the baby will not sink. That said, at the age below 3 months, your baby can swim with a primitive style. And what about the baby reflex after the age of 3 months if placed in the baby pool? Although reflexes had disappeared, he still can do the swim, although not organized or disheveled. Due to the presence of gravity, the child will be pressured from below the water so he could float. He will become excited.
The benefits of swimming for infants and children:
* Means of play
Playing not necessarily in the room or in the park. Swimming pools can also be a means of playing a fun and healthy, but the parents should pay attention to the length of time and condition of swimming pools by children ages, infant / child. Do not linger in the water and the pool which is not in good condition for the child or would not be good / harm to children.
* Eliminate the fear of the water and foster a sense of courage
Many children do not want to learn swimming because of fear of water. If the swimming activity was introduced and socialized since a baby, it’s not going to happen. Because they become familiar and accustomed to the watery pool. Later will form the children to be optimistic and not afraid to face a problem.
* Stimulate reflex motor and physical development
With the play of water, the baby develops muscles, joints grow, optimal body growth increased, and the body was so flexible. All components of the body will be trained through swimming for the whole body from feet, hands, until the head. Although not a perfect technique, babies become trained and his endurance was more awake.
* Improve IQ
A study in Germany stating that the train babies to swim from an early age is very useful not only on physical development, but the ability to concentrate and intelligence of their brain as they enter kindergarten age. The study also states that a child who has been practicing since early, especially during the first three months of age not only has the potential to be a gifted child, but also more independent and confident, and reveals a higher intelligence than children who are not trained. Little movement of limbs while swimming could be expected to stimulate the growth of nerves edge. So the brain becomes more active and expected to increase his intelligence.
* Sharpen self-reliance and confidence
According to the results of research in Germany, children who have been practicing since early will be easier to adapt and adjust to other children as well as easily adapt to new environments. The results are the effects of physical treatment process of the activity of swimming, which allows the little one to gain new experiences with ease. These experiences that enhance self-confidence and independence. The experience also affects the attitude of a child with someone else. Confidence and independence that affect the achievement and intellectual development of children. Swimming pushed a baby grow into an independent person and have a high confidence. This is reflected when the baby is no longer afraid to explore with parents in a big pond.
* The ability of social
Swim in the pool together will foster a sense of community and improve its ability to adapt and socialize with others. Feel free to accompany your child while swimming, because of the closeness that exists between parent and child is paramount for the development. Intimacy between parent and child, is very valuable when he grew up. In addition, attention / parental supervision when children play in the pool is very important for safety.
Things to consider before bringing the kids to a public swimming place:
• Do not direct swim into pool, but doing exercises in stages according to age and courage the infant to the water.
• Note also the condition of the pool such as cleanliness, clarity, pool floor, temperature, direction of sunlight, which affects wind waves, and the number of people who swim,
• Look for a swimming pool which has a special place for your baby shower (warm water, not windy).
• Use baby floats like a Neck Ring.
• Never immerse the baby’s head into the water.
• Keep watch and make sure your baby is in your reach.
• Be a little personal trainers, and especially in the early moments.
• If your baby’s hands have changed color to white and wrinkled, it is a time the baby should finish swimming (about 15-20 minutes, depending on the temperature of water & air).
• Do not forget to bring baby oil (telon oil), warm clothes / jackets, and socks.
• Prepare other favorite baby milk, food / hot porridge.