Having fun in the pool is the perfect way to instill in your child a love of swimming. Swimming skills will stick with them for life and your child will thank you for raising them with water confidence. Here are our top games for playing in the pool from our years of experience:
This Game Teaches: Swimming With and Against Currents
How To Play It: Ideally this exercise will have as many children as possible joining in, but you can also play it in a smaller pool if you only have a few people. Have everyone form into a ring lining the pool – adults too! – and start moving in one direction. If you do this for a little while, the consistent movement from everyone in the pool will create a small whirlpool that can go faster and faster.
After about five minutes of this, blow a whistle and have everyone turn around and start wading in the opposite direction. They’ll be fighting against the current, getting an outstanding workout while simultaneously learning how hard it is to oppose the flow of water.
This Game Teaches: The horizontal swimming position, which will be used in most swimming activities
How To Play It: Start by one end of the pool. Gently hold your child under their arms with them facing you, then slowly begin walking backward. After you’re moving fast enough to raise them into a front float position – this happens naturally if you’re doing it right – start spinning in a circle and encouraging them to kick their feet. Once they’re used to it, let them put their arms around your neck – this will help them get used to both the sensation of speed and the position that swimming is done in.
This Game Teaches: Directional Control
How To Play It: Stand in the water (it should be waist to chest deep), with your legs spread wide. Your kid’s goal is to swim between your legs and emerge on the other side without touching you. New swimmers don’t always have very good directional control while underwater, games like this help them rapidly develop that particular talent.
If you have several adults, challenge the child to swim through everyone’s legs in one go.
This Game Teaches: Breath Control
How To Play It: Completely submerge your head under the water and blow out a stream of bubbles. Then, when you get to the surface, put a smile on your face and put your ear into the water to ‘listen’.
You can pretend with your child to talk to sea creatures during this game, or simply practice the movements. The explanation you give isn’t important – what matters is teaching your child to be comfortable having all parts of their body underwater, and showing that you’re having fun is a key way of reassuring them.
This Game Teaches: Propulsion and Kicking at any speed
How To Play It: Place your child by either a stair or one of the walls – they’ll want to be holding onto something. Once they’re ready, start calling out the colors of a traffic light.
In addition to reinforcing traffic colors and meanings – an important part of child development all by itself – this game can teach your child to go from any speed to any other speed whenever they need to. Be sure to randomize the order of colors you call out.
This Game Teaches: Diving and efficient swimming
How To Play It: Find some small, easy-to-grab items that can sink to the bottom of the pool (some specialty stores sell toys that do exactly this). When you have some space, start tossing these items to the bottom of the pool and encouraging your child to grab them and bring them back. Be sure to time them on this and see how many they can bring back. Keep the time limit longer at first – say, three or four minutes – and slowly increase it as they grow more aquatically adept.
This Game Teaches: All Swimming Skills
How To Play It: Collect a large number of pool toys, ideally of different types, then place them in various parts of the pool. Each of these toys should be associated with a swimming activity of some kind, and your kid’s goal is to interact with each of them as quickly as possible. As this can test many different skills – swimming styles, diving, holding their breath, etc. – it’s best saved for when your child has learned the basics.
In addition to reinforcing everything they’ve already learned, the Relay Race further enhances their ability to change what they’re doing on a moment’s notice – and when they’ve mastered this game, you can say they’ve truly become an outstanding swimmer.
The upcoming festive break is a great opportunity for you and your child to spend some quality time in the pool. These fun and simple games can help you teach your child a love for all things aquatic. It’s a great way to introduce swimming skills in stages in addition to the weekly swimming classes. So grab your towels and let’s go!
Find out how to Fast-track your Swimming Skills with our HPSC swimming camps.
Do you want to see quick improvement and take your swimming to the next level? Join one of our swimming camps which are held during the school holidays and fast track your swimming. Read on and we’ll explain why they are so effective.
Swim camps are a great way to see quick improvement no matter what level of swimmer you are. Every school holiday we’ll be running camps at different venues in Dubai. Our camps are for swimmers of all abilities from complete beginners to fitness swimmers and competitors, adults as well as children. There’s something for everyone, join us to make a splash!
Why are SwimCamps so Effective?
Apart from being a fun activity, swim camps are one of the best ways to establish technique and correct style. Because you or your child is swimming daily you get to practice what you learnt yesterday without any chance of forgetting. The improvements you’ll see from swim camps are very rewarding.
And did we mention that they are also great fun?!
We’ll put you in a group with swimmers of your age and level, our coaches will work with your group to analyise your technique and you’ll get one to one feedback and coaching on how to improve. For fitness swimmers, good technique is important to ensure you get a good workout. For those aspiring to swim competitively, technique is everything!
Our swim camps keep you and your children active and busy. All swimmers meet and make friends and get a sense of achievement when they see how quick they are improving. It’s a fun way to learn to swim or learn to compete.
The focus in our swimming camps will be on;
Swimming isn’t just for the children. HPSC also offers adult only classes as well so don’t be shy, come on down and make it a family affair! Whether it’s for fun, exercise or with an aspiration to swim professionally, dive in at HPSC and we’ll show you how it’s done.
Getting your child ready for a swim meet can be stressful, especially if it’s your first time. Not only do you have to help your child prepare mentally and physically for the competition, but you also have to make sure you have everything your child will need for the big event. The good news is it’s not as overwhelming as it sounds, or at least it doesn’t have to be.
With a little preparation, you can rest easier knowing that your son or daughter will be ready, and your child can focus on what’s important—having fun! Here are our top tips on how to prepare your child for a swim meet.
The first thing you’ll want to do is figure out what your child will need for the swim meet. Coaches can provide more specific guidance, but here is a list of items you’ll generally need.
Bonus Tip: Talk to your child’s coach and get a full schedule for the event so you know exactly where your child needs to be and where. Make sure your child understands the schedule, too.
Nutrition plays a huge role in your child’s success as a swimmer. While a balanced diet is essential year-round, it’s important to boost carb intake several days prior to an event, and especially the night before.
But this doesn’t mean your child should engage in “carb loading.” Loading up on cookies, candy bars and french fries won’t give your child a competitive edge—more likely, it will make him or her feel sick. The simple sugars found in most junk foods provide a quick boost of energy, but not one that is sustainable. And since most of these foods are high in fats and low in nutritional value, they only serve to slow your child down.Instead, focus on foods that are high in complex carbohydrates and nutritional value. These include starchier foods, such as vegetables, pasta, whole grain cereal, rice, bread and beans. For example, the night before a meet, you could serve your a child a whole-grain pasta dish with vegetables.
It’s also important to fuel up the morning before the event. A light, high-carb breakfast, such as whole-grain cereal, toast or bagels is a good starting point. If there isn’t time for breakfast, or your child is feeling too nervous to eat, you can also pack something and carry it to the meet. But do try to make sure they eat with enough time to digest and don’t skip breakfast completely. They don’t want to be swimming on an empty energy tank.
After an intensive competition, your child’s energy level will need boost. It is best to refuel within 15 to 30 minutes after finishing to repair muscles and replace energy. A great after competition snack is a whole wheat sandwich with peanut butter, chicken breast, tuna or beef.Remember, this isn’t the time to try new things. Make sure your child is eating foods that he or she is familiar with, foods that agree with their systems. You definitely want no surprises come swim time!It’s also important to make sure your child stays hydrated before, during and after the event. Finally, make sure your child has a fun time. If they love what they are doing then they are more likely to perform well and be motivated to train hard.