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Staying Healthy In Cold Weather: Debunking Common Myths

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Autumn is here, and as the cold and flu season begins to take hold in our local schools and places of business, many of us naturally have questions about how to stay healthy.  With wintertime illness myths also running rampant, the team at Premier Aquatics is dedicated to spreading health, facts, and expert swim-related advice.

Cold Weather Doesn’t Cause Colds

The simple truth is that colds are caused by viruses and not temperature.  Realistically, being cozy indoors with heated, recycled air and a room full of people puts you at increased risk of catching cold, as opposed to going outside without a coat.  This is due to the fact that in order to catch a cold, a person must be exposed to a virus, most commonly the rhinovirus.  These viruses are passed from person to person, and can live on surfaces like door knobs, handles, cell phones, and faucets.

Your Wet Head Won’t Make You Sick

The myth that going out with a wet head will make you sick likely goes hand-in-hand with its trusty partner-myth that says more heat escapes from your head than anywhere else on the body.  The truth is that having a wet head does not contribute to a person’s likelihood of getting a cold.  Temperature escapes from the body equally, so for comfort’s sake, it’s important to bundle up in the cooler weather.  It won’t, however, keep you from getting sick.

You May Be Contagious Even If You Don’t Have A Fever

The myth that you aren’t contagious if you don’t have a fever may be one of the biggest reasons the cold and flu viruses spread like wildfire.  Whether you have a fever or not, a person with a cold can remain contagious for 7-10 days after becoming infected, and someone with a flu generally remains contagious for about 5 days after getting sick.  Keep in mind, a person can be contagious even before they are showing real symptoms.  If you’re sick, it’s best to stay home.

Swimming During The Winter Doesn’t Cause Ear Infections

Similar to colds, middle ear infections are not caused by cold and wet conditions.  Ear infections are caused by viruses or bacteria.  Typically, ear infections occur when an individual has an infectious cold that causes swelling and restricts the draining of Eustachian Tube fluid from naturally draining through the nose and throat.  Swimmer’s ear, a more easily treated condition, is an infection of the ear canal that is associated with being in the pool, but this condition is not more likely to happen in the winter.

Keeping Your Children Healthy This Flu Season

While these long-held myths aren’t true, there are many actions parents can take to keep their children healthy throughout the winter season, including:

  • Teaching proper hand washing.
  • Emphasizing the importance of not touching their faces or mouths without clean hands.
  • Explaining proper sneezing and coughing etiquette to avoid the spread of viruses.
  • Encouraging moderate physical activity, such as swim lessons, and healthy eating to boost their immune systems.
  • Disinfecting commonly handled items, including keyboards, cell phones, keys, and toys.

Not only do winter swim lessons not put your child’s health at risk, keeping your child active through the winter months can have significant benefits on your child’s health and well-being.  For children who suffer from allergies, being in the pool can help ease the symptoms.  Additionally, playing in the pool can moisturize otherwise dry mucus membranes in the nose and sinuses that are a result of dry, heated indoor air.

At Premier Aquatics, we are dedicated to improving the lives of all our students throughout the year.  Click here to learn more about the Premier Aquatic’s year-round swim lesson programs.

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Goggles: The Great Debate With Childhood Swim Lessons

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Parents often ask the question about whether their child can wear goggles during his or her swim lesson.  It is a natural question, as parents want their children to be as comfortable as possible when learning to swim.  However, there is a balance between safety and comfort that parents should consider when talking with their child’s swim instructor.

Safety First

While we also target enjoyment and health goals, the main goal for childhood swim lessons is teaching the lifesaving skill of staying above water.  Swim lessons provide a controlled environment where children are able to become acclimated to the water and establish a level of comfort.  Step by step, they develop skills and build strength.

Wearing goggles in the water allows the child to see clearly under water without having to adjust their eyes.  It may make them feel more comfortable, but it keeps them from having to learn a valuable skill – opening their eyes under water.

While this skill may not seem like a big deal to many parents, consider that main reason for teaching your child to swim.  In Southern California, our children are often exposed to the water year-round.  Therefore, we teach our children to swim to protect them from drowning if they were to accidentally fall into the water.  Children who have only been in the pool while wearing goggles will be startled by the new experience of being underwater without them.  In that moment, the likelihood of their training kicking in diminishes significantly.

Premier Aquatics Services Swim Lessons

At Premier Aquatics Services, all of our instructors are dedicated to teaching effective swim techniques that keep students safe and prepare them for a life of water enjoyment.  We encourage all of our young swimmers to learn to swim without goggles.  Once they demonstrate a comfort with being underwater, instructors are open to their students making the switch.

To learn more about our swim lesson programs and register your child for classes, visit our aquatic services page.

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Battling Swimming Fatigue In The Pool

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No matter how well-trained, every swimmer will hit a time in his or her workout when fatigue sets in.  It’s that moment when limbs feel heavier and technique starts to fall apart. Whether it’s after 10 lengths or 50, there are steps each swimmer can take to postpone the onset of fatigue.

Strategically Switch Strokes

Different swim strokes utilize different muscles to varying degrees.  While continually switching strokes may increase the chances of fatigue because the muscles are not able to find a rhythm, switching your stroke before the muscles become exhausted of energy is an important step for prolonging your swim.  Many swimmers find that switching to the back stroke can provide a time to catch your breath and use different muscle groups.

Utilize Training Tools

Don’t be afraid to utilize tools like kickboards, pull bouys, paddles, and fins. By adding these tools into your daily workout, you will be not only experience a better full body workout, but you will also experience more fun in the pool. Changing it up helps keep swimming fun.

Adjusting Effort

Instead of taking a break during your swim, adjust the amount of energy you are putting into your swims.  By kicking with more force, you are giving your arms and shoulders a short break, and vice versa.

Ride the Glide

As your body begins to fatigue, lower the number of strokes you use per length by riding the glide as long as possible between strokes.  Practice counting the number of strokes per length at the beginning of your swim, and once you peak in your workout, begin reducing the number to conserve energy.

Consult The Experts

As you train and build strength in the pool, it’s essential to listen to your body and learn when to push and when to rest.  Learning to postpone fatigue is a great skill, but it is extremely important to rest when you feel your technique beginning to fall apart.  Swimming with poor technique can lead to injury, which can ruin a swimmer’s training schedule.

At Premier Aquatics Services, your health and safety are our top priorities.  All of our instructors and coaches understand the importance of teaching proper technique and remaining aware of form while swimmers are in the water.  Visit our website to learn more about our wide range of group and individual swim classes.

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It’s Never Too Late To Learn To Swim: A Look Into Adult Swim Lessons

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It’s common to hear discussion about teaching children to learn to swim, while ignoring another large portion of individuals who also haven’t yet learned the skill: adults.  For many adults who have yet to learn to swim, feelings of embarrassment, fear, shame or uncertainty often get in the way of signing up for lessons.  If this sounds like you, you are not alone.

At Premier Aquatics Services, we offer adult semi-private swim lessons and private swim lessons designed specifically for adults who want to conquer old fears, develop new skills, and incorporate a low-impact exercise routine into their lives.

Swim lessons are tailored to the needs of the group or individual and progress accordingly, here’s a look into adult swim lessons.

Becoming Comfortable in the Water

Because we better understand danger as adults and have a grasp on our physical limitations, entering a pool without being able to swim can be scary for some people.  Therefore, it’s important to take the time to become comfortable in the water.  To begin, we encourage our adult students to walk around in chest deep water, so they can get a feel for keeping their balance.  When a comfort level is reached, we begin exploring the sensation of putting his or her face into the water, beginning with putting the nose under water while blowing bubbles.

These essential first steps are all done with the feet firmly planted on the bottom of the pool with a trained swim coach keeping you safe.

Learning to Kick and Back-Float

Once comfortable being in the water, it becomes time to learn how to do things in the water.  This begins with learning to kick and float.

Often times, adult learners are most comfortable starting with holding onto the side of the pool and experimenting with stretching their bodies out and kicking.  It provides a great way to learn how your legs feel as they move through the water and introduces you to sensation of floating in the prone position (on your belly).

Learning to float is arguably the most essential step in learning to swim.  While learning to float, the swim coaches help to support the students’ hips as they learn how breathing and relaxation affect the body’s ability to naturally stay towards the surface of the water.  Eventually, this is combined with some light kicking to feel how your body moves through the water, not just in the water.

Floating in the Prone Position and Adding Arms

Now that you have had your face in the water and feel confident that your body does, in fact, float, you and your swim coach begin to work together in getting you into the prone position, or floating on your stomach.  This is the base position for most swim strokes.  By teaching each step and allowing you the time to become comfortable before moving on, this step becomes much more natural and less frightening than it may sound as you read this post from the safety of your home.

Arm motions get paired with head motions to teach you breathing techniques and get you moving forward, both literally and figuratively.  As all of your new skills come together, you will be overwhelmed by the sense of accomplishment you feel as your body begins to glide through the water without having your feet touch the ground.

Contact Your Trusted Swim Partners

Swimming is a learned skill, and there is no shame in not having learned that skill yet.  It is never too late.  The expert swim instructors at Premier Aquatics Services will help you find the swim lesson that fits with your needs.  Don’t be afraid to conquer your fears; we will be with you every step along the way. Visit our website to learn more about our Adult Programs in Aliso Viejo or call us at (949) 716-3333.

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Fit Adults Have Healthier Kids

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During Childhood Obesity Awareness Month, the team at Premier Aquatics Services wants to remind adults that parents who exercise regularly have children who grow up understanding the value of physical activity. However, we also understand that the key to maintaining a regular exercise program is finding something you love to do.

Most of us know that children look to their parents, aunts and uncles, older siblings, and other role models to develop their ideas about what is normal adult behavior. By instilling healthy eating and regular exercise as a normal element of the adult lifestyle, we are encouraging healthy behaviors in our children.

As children see their role models enjoying exercise regimes, children naturally begin to consider the physical activity they would like to incorporate into their own lives. Therefore, finding an exercise pattern that excites you is an essential step. At Premier Aquatics, we have developed a new fitness program specifically tailored to change up your routine and add motivation back to your workout.

Frogman Fitness

The newest adult class at Premier Aquatics Services – Aliso Viejo is designed to keep its members engaged while burning calories and building stamina. Frogman Fitness classes blend Crossfit-style workouts with swimming to create a full-body workout unlike any other. The use of body weight and stretch band exercises has an incredible impact on the body, while still offering a lower impact workout than you may experience during a workout in the gym.

With a mixture of swimming, running, and callisthenic training, it’s impossible to get bored at a Frogman Fitness class. Participants have three class times each week to choose from, making it easy for Frogman Fitness classes to fit into your weekday and weekend schedule.

Explore Premier Aquatics Adult Classes

Premier Aquatics Services offers more than just swim lessons for children. We understand that a healthy lifestyle is a family affair, and we have classes and swim opportunities for family members of all ages and abilities. Between group lessons, private lessons, the Masters Swim Team, Aqua Zumba, and now Frogman Fitness, it’s time to get back in the pool and have fun with your workout once again. Visit our website to learn more about our Adult Programs in Aliso Viejo.

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Top Reasons CPR Education Is Important For Your Family

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Four out of five sudden cardiac arrests happen at home, according to the American Heart Association. With nearly 383,000 sudden cardiac arrests happening outside of a hospital each year, that’s a scary statistic.

What’s even worse is that nearly 70% of American bystanders feel helpless in the event of a cardiac arrest emergency because they either don’t know CPR or have let their training significantly lapse.

What Is CPR?

Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) is a lifesaving medical technique that is useful in many emergencies where someone’s breathing or heartbeat have stopped, including heart attack and drowning. CPR is a combination of chest compressions and breathing assistance ideally administered while awaiting the arrival of emergency professionals.

Why Learn CPR?

No one ever wants to be in a situation where CPR is necessary, but the unfortunate reality is that many of us will be faced with such a situation. We have the ability to learn the skills to take care of one another and make a significant difference in the survival rate of someone who is experiencing a medical emergency.

Here are some of the biggest reasons to learn CPR:

  • 88% of cardiac arrests happen in the home.
  • Many heart attacks and cardiac arrest situations come with few obvious warning signs.
  • Drowning is the leading cause of death from an unintentional injury for children between the ages of 1 and 4.
  • It can only take one minute for a child to drown.
  • Effective CPR administered immediately after cardiac arrest can double or triple the chances of survival, but only about 32% of victims receive bystander CPR.

Statistically speaking, if you are faced with a cardiac arrest emergency, it will likely be in your home.

Where To Learn CPR?

At Premier Aquatics Services, we believe in preparing all of our clients with lifesaving skills. From child swim lessons to American Red Cross CPR Certification, we provide training all year long.

We know how important it is for you and your family to know what to do in the event of an emergency. While younger children should be taught how to call for help, older children can enroll in CPR classes alongside their parents. Click here to learn more or enroll in CPR classes today!

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Battling Childhood Obesity In The Pool

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According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, one in three children in the United States are either overweight or obese. That is a shocking statistic and shines a light on an alarming trend. September is Childhood Obesity Awareness Month, a period of time to discuss the issues behind the epidemic and the risks it poses for the health of our children.

The Impacts of Childhood Obesity

Let’s Move!, a comprehensive initiative launched by the First Lady, estimates that one third of children born after 2000 will suffer from diabetes, if we don’t begin to seriously address the obesity issue facing our society. Chronic obesity also puts these children at a significantly higher risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, cancer, and asthma as they age.

The Reasons for Childhood Obesity

As a culture, our lifestyles have changed significantly over the past 30 years. Our children used to walk to and from school each day, actively play in gym class, participate in after-school sports programs, and play in the neighborhood until they were called in for dinner. However, now car or bus rides have replaced early morning walks, gym and after-school sports programs have often been cut due to budget restrictions, and video game consoles have replaced bicycles.

As our children’s activity levels have plummeted in the technology age, the calorie counts of standard diets have skyrocketed. Overall, Americans are eating 31% more calories than forty years ago, according to Let’s Move!.

The Battle Against Childhood Obesity

As adults, when we want to lose weight, we often hit the gym with a wild intensity for a month or so, before we lose our ambitious gusto and find the couch once again. We have an opportunity with our children. By engaging children in regular physical activity from the earliest possible ages, we engrain these healthy habits into their normal lifestyles. We teach them to play actively and enjoy physical activity.

Many sports operate seasonally; swim lessons are the best way to keep your child moving year-round and introduce active play into your child’s everyday life. While the full-body exercise burns substantial calories, swimming provides children with a fun and safe environment to build strength, develop skills, and most importantly, play. Follow this link to read more about the lifelong benefits of childhood swim lessons.

As children get older, they experience even more distractions to keep them sedentary. Children between the ages of eight and eighteen years old spend an average of 7.5 hours each day using some form of entertainment media, such as video games, computers, television, smart phones, and other technology. When you ignite a passion for being in the pool, children look forward to disconnecting from their electronics and are more likely to live in the moment.

Enrolling your child in lifelong swim lessons can help keep him or her healthy throughout life. Premier Aquatics Services is currently enrolling all age group in our fall swim programs. Click here to learn more about the Premier Aquatic’s year-round swim lesson programs.

In recognition of Childhood Obesity Awareness Month, Premier Aquatics is extending a September Stay and Play offer to anyone who takes swim lessons at our Aliso Viejo location.  Come in early or stay after your lesson to enjoy even more physical playtime in the pool, free of charge.

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Reducing The Risk Of Childhood Drowning: Ocean Safety

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In this two-part series, “Reducing The Risk Of Childhood Drowning,” we explore tips for keeping your children safe around the water. Whether at the pool or beach, Southern California children often enjoy the water throughout the year. In the second part of the series below, we discuss how to reduce the risk of ocean drowning.

 Earlier in the month, five OC children were involved in near-drowning incidents within a span of four days – prompting our short blog series on drowning. According to the Orange County Register, “the five near-drownings raise this year’s total to 57 drowning calls in Orange County.”

Whenever children are near water, their safety is always a primary concern for the adults accompanying them. However, many adults simply don’t understand how to keep children safe at the beach.

Understanding Ocean Conditions

Unlike pools and lakes, ocean conditions are always changing, affected by changing tides, rip currents, and offshore weather patterns. Because of this inconsistent nature, it is essential to understand some basic concepts about the ocean and remain constantly vigilant to shifts in conditions.

Tides – Oceans have tides that make the water’s reach on the shore, also called the tide-line, higher or lower at different times of the day; this means a spot that is dry now may be under water in a few hours. Tides shift with the moon cycle, meaning some tides are more drastic than others. It also means the timing of the tides will cycle throughout the month. Most public beaches will post the day’s tide times, so you can plan accordingly.

Terrain – The ocean floor is constantly shifting and changing, resulting in unpredictable terrain below the water. Be aware of sharp rocks, sand bars, sudden dips, and other hazards that will likely not be marked.

Waves – Waves come in from the deep ocean as a “swell” of energy. As the swell approaches shallower water, it becomes a wave. Therefore, the power and speed of waves will be dictated by the amount of energy in the ever-changing swells and ocean terrain. This means that wave conditions can change drastically within a very short period of time.

Rip Current – Rip currents are powerful, narrow channels of fast-moving water that pull out to sea. Sometimes they look like rivers within the ocean; other times, they look more like bubbles of “white water” pulling farther out than usual.

Flag System – The State of California (and most other states in the U.S.) uses a Lifeguard Flag System to alert beachgoers about the water conditions:

Green – Mild conditions. Small waves, and rip currents may be present.
Yellow – Moderate conditions. Larger waves with rip currents.
Red – Hazardous conditions. Large waves and dangerous conditions. Expert ocean swimmers only.

Tips For Reducing The Risk Of Drowning At The Ocean

A day at the beach is one of the delights of living in Southern California, but it poses significant risks and requires a different set of precautions for parents than a day at the pool. While there is no way to eliminate the risk completely, these essential safety tips can help to keep your children safe:

  • Always be alert. Taking your eyes off children even for a minute can be the difference between life and death. If the beach is a social atmosphere for your family, pair up with other parents to make sure one or more adults are interacting with and closely monitoring children at all time without multi-tasking.
  • Monitor playtime in the sand. Unlike the pool setting, ocean water is constantly moving and changing. Children need to be monitored at all times, especially when playing within 10’ of the wet sand. Remember, children do not understand waves and will chase a rolling toy.
  • Equip less experienced swimmers. Inexperienced swimmers should wear U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jackets at all times. Note that this isn’t a replacement for supervision, but is an added safety precaution. Some floatation devices can actually be more dangerous than helpful for children. Ask us about our recommendations.
  • Be in arms reach. If children are not fully competent at swimming with waves and currents, an adult should always be within arms reach. This is essential even if the child is wearing a water flotation device.
  • Use the Buddy System. As older children begin to swim in the ocean without a parent, make sure they are properly using the buddy system. It is not only important to enter the water together; buddies need to know where the other person is at all times.
  • Only swim in lifeguard monitored areas. Lifeguards do more than watch for drowning swimmers. They monitor the water for changing conditions and sudden hazards. Play it safe and never swim far from the lifeguard stand.
  • Teach children how to swim. The best way to protect your child is to teach him or her to swim as early as possible. By improving a child’s swimming skills, you provide them with the most essential layer of protection. Swim lessons teach the life-saving skills that all people should have near the water.
  • Educate children about the ocean. There are many ways to educate even young children about the how the ocean works. It’s never too early to start.

Child drowning happens quickly and silently. Read our blog on Recognizing the Quiet Signs of Drowning to dispel common myths about drowning.

Consult Your Community Swim Experts

Premier Aquatics Services provides our local community with first aid training, water safety trainings, and swim lesson programs. We are currently enrolling all age groups in our fall swim programs. Enroll your children today, and give them the skills to help avoid drowning. Click here to learn more about the Premier Aquatic’s year-round swim lesson programs.

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Reducing The Risk Of Childhood Drowning: Pool Safety

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In this two-part series, “Reducing The Risk Of Childhood Drowning,” we explore tips for keeping your children safe around the water. With the beautiful weather in Southern California, our children are often exposed to the water year-round. This week, we discuss how to reduce the risk of drowning at the pool.  

Last week, five OC children were involved in near-drowning incidents across the county. According to the Orange County Register, three of the incidents happened at pools and two were ocean-related. Four of the children were under the age of five.

Drowning is every parent’s fear when bringing his or her child around water. While there is no way to eliminate the risk completely, some essential safety tips can help to keep your children safe.

Tips For Reducing The Risk Of Drowning At The Pool

Pools can often provide a sense of safety in comparison to the ocean. Safety gates, crystal clear water, and a buzz of people sitting around can provide a false sense of security; many feel as though someone would notice a child in trouble.   Unfortunately, this is often not the case.

Here are some important tips to keep in mind around the pool:

  • Always be alert. Taking your eyes off children even for a minute can be the difference between life and death. If the pool is a social setting, pair up with another set of parents to take turns interacting with and closely monitoring the children in the water. An adult should be monitoring children in the water at all times, without multi-tasking.
  • Be in arms reach. If children are not fully competent in the water, an adult should be in the water with them. This is essential even if the child is wearing a water flotation device.
  • Talk with children in the water. Drowning children cannot speak. By talking with your children while they play and listening for their playful noises, you are helping to ensure their safety.
  • Equip less experienced swimmers. When outside of the pool, inexperienced swimmers should wear U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jackets. Note that this isn’t a replacement for supervision, but an added safety precaution in case the child falls into the pool. Some floatation devices can actually be more dangerous than helpful for children, so talk with us about our recommendations.
  • Don’t rely solely on lifeguards. Attending a swimming pool equipped with a lifeguard adds a significant layer of safety, but lifeguards are monitoring a pool full of people. Mistakes can happen. It is always your responsibility to supervise your children.
  • Teach children how to swim. The best way to protect your child is to teach him or her to swim and be comfortable in the water as early as possible. By improving a child’s swimming skills, you provide them with the most essential layer of protection. Swim lessons offer much more than a fun time in the pool.

In nearly all of the near-drowning incidents from last week, the parents talked about being distracted for just a short time. Child drowning happens quickly and silently. Read our blog on Recognizing the Quiet Signs of Drowning to dispel common myths about drowning.

Consult Your Community Swim Experts

Premier Aquatics Services provides our local community with first aid training, water safety trainings, and swim lesson programs. We are currently enrolling all age groups in our fall swim programs. Click here to learn more about the Premier Aquatic’s year-round swim lesson programs.

Sign up for our Newsletter to receive discounts on off-season lessons!

Click here to continue with Part 2: Ocean Safety

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The Lifelong Benefits Of Childhood Swim Lessons

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Many studies show the immediate benefits of learning to swim early in childhood. Additionally, the benefits of childhood swimming can be carried throughout each swimmer’s life.

Here are just some of the lifelong benefits of childhood swim lessons:

Water Safety

According to the CDC, about two children under the age of 14 die from unintentional drowning each day in the United States. In our country, drowning ranks fifth on the list of unintentional injury deaths. Teaching children to swim, educating them on how to behave around water, and helping them develop a comfort in the water will significantly reduce your child’s risk of becoming a drowning statistic.

Low-Impact Sport

While no one can claim that swimming injuries do not occur, the low-impact nature of swimming is gentler on the joints and gives children’s growing bodies a break from the harsh, high-impact effects of running-related sports. Additionally, if injuries do occur, swimming offers more options for remaining active during recovery. For instance, if an individual suffers from a shoulder injury, they can still perform kicking exercises or sidestroke on the uninjured side without experiencing any jarring motions to disrupt the healing process.

Teamwork And Individuality

Swim teams provide the unique developmental benefit of teaching teamwork while supporting the individual’s sense of self. Nearly all team sports aim to develop a deeper understanding of trust, cooperation, respect, and cooperation; swim teams do the same. However, swim teammates also must develop their own self-motivation and individualized perseverance. After all, while they experience the team atmosphere outside of the pool, in the pool they are focused solely on their own performance.

Goal Setting And Achievement

In many swim circumstances, each individual swimmer is setting his or her goals and working to achieve them. They are making decisions for themselves, improving their skills, and practicing goal-oriented training. This is a life skill that has relevance through every aspect of adulthood.

Exercise For Life

As we age, many of us begin to give up our preferred sports, such as running, for exercises that are kinder to our bodies. Not only do pool sports have a lower risk of serious injury that can haunt the athlete later in life (think of those often discussed old football injuries), but also swimming can decrease disability in older adults by allowing them to weightlessly exercise and move their joints.

Swimming is an activity that can bring lifelong joy to an individual and increase his or her wellbeing throughout life. Premier Aquatics Services is currently enrolling all age group in our fall swim programs. Click here to learn more about the Premier Aquatic’s year-round swim lesson programs.

Sign up for our Newsletter to receive discounts on offseason lessons!