My nick name as a kid was water baby. When we were near water, I’d be in it. Even when we were out walking, if I could hear a stream or spy something watery looking in the distance, I’d be running off to find it, stripping off as I went. Despite this love of water, I never made anything of it – the training was too early and other things became interesting to me (boys). Even so, one of the first questions I asked my midwife when Reuben was born was ‘when can I take my baby swimming?’ My friend had sent me a swimming costume for him and I couldn’t wait to get him in it! Of course, then life happened and just trying to exist day to day was hard work so it wasn’t until he was nearly 5 months that we finally got round to it.

when can I take my baby swimming?

check out my swimming trunks! (mum has them on back to front though)

Nearly everyone I went to NCT with have been taking their babies to swimming lessons, and one baby has been reported to be clinging on to his dad’s shoulders while he swims through a hoop!! We are far behind. However, after our week away where we struggled to get Reuben out of the pool without a tantrum, I’m so happy that Reuben is finally starting his very own swimming lessons with the award winning swim school, Nemo Swimming.

when can I take my baby swimming? Here's 5 reasons it's a must!

What’s all that blue stuff?

when can I take my baby swimming? 5 reasons it's a must!

Ah-ha! Now I’m never getting out.

I’ve been speaking to Theresa, who runs Nemo swimming, and happily she has agreed to help me write a few posts about teaching your baby to swim, so watch this space for more blog posts about baby swimming and hopefully some more video footage to demonstrate the types of things you can do with your baby in the pool!

To start us off, I asked Theresa the same question I asked my midwife because if you’ve just had a baby, you may be wondering the same thing (except hopefully you will actually go)…

‘when can I take my baby swimming?’

“Basically, you can take your baby as soon as you feel fit enough. We wouldn’t really advise before the first month though. Also, you may find that you are still bleeding or recovering, especially from a c-section, in which case Dad could always take baby – it’s a lovely way for them to get to know each other!”

I read an article a while back which stated that babies who don swimsuits earlier hit milestones faster (not just swimming badges, we’re talking developmental, physical and mental, milestones!) so I also asked Theresa what she saw were the 5 main benefits for me to take my baby swimming.

5 reasons to take your baby swimming

1. Safety.  It is very important for all children at every age to have the basic survival skills in water, for example floating on their backs or turning round to hold onto the sides.
2. Exercise. It is a way of gently introducing exercise to your baby.
3. Bonding. Baby swimming is a great bonding experience between parent (or carer) and child.
4. Development. It is a fabulous way of developing your child’s coordination and fine motor skills.
5. Fun. Babies, once they are used to the water (and babies do go through ups and downs as they get used to swimming), love swimming so it’s a fun and exciting time while learning a new skill with your child.

Thanks Theresa! I would add a 6th which is Sleep! Reuben always has a lovely sleep afterwards, which means I have a lovely rest.

We started our lessons this week – it’s a 6 week course, which costs £60, and we will be covering  in the lessons basic safety, including an introduction to submersion and holding on techniques. So much fun and he loved his first lesson!
when can I take my baby swimming? 5 reasons it's a must!
This must be under water love! (and if you’re wondering about the hat…sun safety first!)

Over the coming 6 weeks we plan to do a number of posts about taking your baby swimming, including how to first introduce your baby to swimming, and submersion techniques. If you are eager to get started sooner, there are some handy hits and tips over on the Baby Nemo page.

Is there anything in particular you would be interested to know about? Please do leave a comment below and I’ll do my best to get advice from Theresa and the Nemo Swimming team! Or have you got some tips or tricks for us?!