With the start of the new year we are also starting out with swimming lessons again. The kids have not had lessons since last spring. Sure, we went "swimming" a billion times this past summer, and my kids are all comfortable in the water, but I think being a good swimmer is essential.
All of my boys love going under water but they are not really efficient swimmers. Joey can do the front crawl the length of the big pool at the Y but he is still timid in deep water and hangs close to the edge. Tommy can do the front crawl and can hold his breath forever (seriously, the whole length of the small pool) but we have to get him breathing with the strokes. Ben is comfortable in the water until you ask him to float on his back. These are all things we need to work on.
The last time I took Grace to the pool it was a Mommy and Me class. She has never really had a swim lesson on her own and she always clung to me in the pool whenever the water got a little deeper. I was curious to see how she would handle her first swim class without me in the pool with her.
All of the kids were excited about swimming classes again, except for Joey. He was nervous. I think it helped that the pool was much warmer than he remembered it, and they were allowed to start out with flippers. That always makes swimming easier. But as Joey swam the length of the pool he realized that in a year he had grown stronger and what was once difficult for him now seemed easy. His confidence grew even more after he swam the front crawl the length of the pool without the flippers and he wasn't even tired. Soon he was jumping in the deep end of the pool and swimming down to touch the bottom. Something that had terrified him last spring. It was exhilarating to watch.
After Ben and Grace were done it was time for Tommy to jump in the pool. It was clear that he had grown stronger since the last lesson as well and his front crawl was relaxed and calm (even if he didn't breath the whole length of the pool).