Most parents recognize the benefits of teaching their young children to swim for water safety and physical development. Did you know that swimming can also benefit a child’s cognitive development and improve their language and social skills? This article will discuss five benefits of teaching infants to swim and how swimming can impact a child’s developmental milestones.
Taking the Dive: Studies prove learning swimming at early ages accelerates children’s development
Not only is swimming great exercise and a lot of fun for children, but it can also help them improve their overall development. Researchers from the Griffith Institute for Educational Research found that children who learned to swim at an early age were reaching developmental milestones earlier than their non-swimming peers.
These milestones included physical ones and showed that the children also scored significantly better in visual-motor skills such as cutting paper, coloring in and drawing lines, oral expression, and literacy and numeracy. The study found that these results were consistent even across genders and socio-economic status of the children. The research is clear- early swimming made a huge difference.
5 Benefits of Swimming on Early Childhood Development
Here are five benefits of swimming in early childhood development.
Improves Social Skills
Learning to swim is a chance for you to interact with your baby in a new environment. Since they learn by watching you and by interacting with the world around them, learning to swim is a chance for babies to meet new people and other babies. This improves their overall social skills. Research also shows that children who swim at an early age have an easier time following directions and are more comfortable interacting with their peers when they get to school.
Helps Coordination and Balance
Swimming is an excellent way to get exercise, expend energy and improve strength and coordination. It also uses all the muscle groups of the body and can help young children coordinate their movements in a supportive environment as the water holds them up. This support allows them to strengthen their muscles and helps improve balance without the danger of falling or crashing into things.
Builds Language Skills
Swimming also helps improve language skills. Receiving instructions from a swimming teacher such as blowing bubbles underwater, or swimming to the black line, helps children absorb new information and synthesize it with physical activity. Hearing and understanding these instructions can help young children improve their language skills.
Boosts Cognitive Development
Another surprising find is that swimming not only boosts the physical skills of young children, but also has a significant impact on their cognitive development. Early swimmers were found to read, write and complete math skills far ahead of their peers.
Teaches Important Safety Skills
Beside learning how to swim, babies can also learn essential water safety skills and this will reduce the risk of drowning in young children. Even children as young as six months old can learn to turn and float on their backs if they accidentally fall into the water.
Vivvi: How We Support Your Child’s Developmental Growth
At Vivvi, our trained early childhood educators follow a student-led approach supported by a framework of developmental milestones. We believe in encouraging a child’s innate curiosity about the world around them, promoting play, and facilitating explorations. Contact us today to learn more about our program and take a virtual tour of our facilities.