Summer is Coming

Cheryl Gigliotti

Summer is fast approaching and parents are realizing it may be time for kids to learn to swim. You research the best swim facilities, take a tour, buy a new swimsuit and goggles, and the anticipation has gotten to both you and your kiddo. The first lesson has arrived and it is time to begin but something may not be how you expected it.

Many children, both young and old, cannot wait to get into the water and start a fun new chapter. However, some kids start their first lessons in a state of dismay, which can lead to you as a parent feeling disappointed. We at the Jim Montgomery Swim School are here to help!

Starting swim lessons is an exciting time and a big milestone for all of our swimmers at JMSS. We know that an early and consistent water experience is beneficial to not only the child but the parents as well. Swimming is an important skill as it not only keeps your kiddo safe but can help them make strides physically, emotionally, socially and cognitively. It is truly important to stick with it and trust the process with help and guidance along the way.

That being said, is it always an easy process? Absolutely not! When my oldest daughter started learning to swim at the age of 3, it seemed like a small nightmare. She loved to go swimming as long as I would hold her, but she had anxiety even thinking of me not being right there with her. I will never forget the summer I decided she was going to learn and I thought “I love to swim so she will too!” Well I was right; eventually she did learn to love swimming but it took time and loads of patience.

Her first few times in swim lessons she screamed at the top of her lungs if she even thought she was going under the water. It was a noise I did not know a three year old could make! Her coach was patient but I was not; I wanted to see her take the plunge and start to swim on her own. Over time, with lots of consistent practice she started to enjoy her lessons and going under water. She became confident in all of her skills and has advanced from Flounder all the way to Swordfish 2 in the “big pool”.

Time and consistency are two big factors in teaching kids to swim. Watching your kiddo in class when they are not comfortable can be hard and we have been right where you are. Our program is child-centered and focuses on each one as an individual. Every student works on the same skills but at their own pace. Putting kids in swim lessons early and regularly and trusting the process is key to their success.

Tips for parents:

  • Talk to your kids about their upcoming lessons. Bring them to the facility to take a tour and see where they will be spending time.
  • Explain that the facility is a fun and safe place.
  • Use their coach’s name as much as possible before the first lesson.
  • Buying goggles can be a fun outing before their first lesson; let them be a part of the process by selecting a pair just for them.
  • Praise them for every accomplishment along the way.

Want to know more about our program? Cruise around our website for lots of great info