Well, while our American counterparts are starting their summer holidays, we parents in Malaysia have just survived a 2-week school holiday. Kids are back at school again and the noise level in the house is down a notch. The first week of our holiday we spent a night at Port Dickson... courtesy of my mom. We don't go on trips a lot and so I thought it would be a good treat for the kids. Plus, they got to do some bonding with their grandmother.
So, off we go armed with buckets, a plastic spade, swimming floats and a mat to sit on. The kids all ready in their swimming suits, excited and full of energy. I thought we were going to spend a nice evening on the beach, listening to the soothing sound of waves and enjoying the gentle sea breeze. It wasn't even hot out. It was a nice, shady evening. Well, we spent probably 15 minutes on the beach. Yup... around 15 minutes... that's all. You see, we were at the yacht club and they have a swimming pool. The kids would rather enjoy the swimming pool then the beach. In a way, I don't blame them though. Port Dickson isn't the greatest beach around. The water was kinda dark green-blackish. They only went in ankle deep. Even I didn't really encourage them to go in. The water at the swimming pool was definitely more enticing. So, we went all the way to a beach for a holiday, to spend time in a swimming pool. Life is funny.
(Plus, that night was my Desperate Housewives night and right when the show was starting, the tv goes blank on me. Aaargh! Apparently, we share a booster with another room and they must have turned it off, causing me to stare at a static screen. Thank goodness for repeats.)
Anyway, I've always known how much my kids love swimming. I feel bad cause I don't take them to the pool much. Watching my two older kids frolicking in the kiddy pool with floats just didn't sit right with me. So, I finally signed them up for swimming classes. Did a bit of homework and finally settled with Dolphin Sport Adventure at the Panasonic Sports Complex in Shah Alam. It's called "Kompleks Sukan Negara" now. I believe their classes are one of the most affordable ones around.
We've gone for 2 lessons so far. The kids love the idea that they get to swim every week now. Their instructor is very friendly. He seems to handle kids quite well. K is learning quickly. KokoD almost drowned last week. Heheheh. Well, they had to jump from their instructor to the wall. He jumped and didn't quite reach the wall. K said she had to reach in to pull him out. Poor KokoD. He's not so enthusiastic about swimming now. But I know compared to his other 2 siblings, he is the most uncomfortable in the water. I could see that even when he was a baby. So, it'll take him a while to learn to swim. He'll have to get over his fear first.
Anyway, I was watching the instructors a bit when they were having toddler lessons. So, just from observation, here are a few tips.
MAMAS TODDLER SWIMMING TIPS
- Idea is to get your child comfortable in the water. Play with them in the kiddy pool. Splash a round. Part of playing could be to put their face in the water. You could also blow bubbles and have them learn to do the same.
- Go to the big (adult) pool. Hold them and bounce them around. You can also let them float, like they are swimming.
Oh, and very important when you take your kids swimming... take a flask of hot drink with you and snacks. They get cold and hungry!