Is swimming with your dad a different story?
What is the dad's role in swimming? Is swimming with your dad a different story? How does your dad contribute to swimming and growing up? This is not a text that will diminish the importance of mothers in swimming. This is a story that only reminds us of how important the dad's presence is for swimming. And that the balance in swimming between parents, mom and dad, is desirable for future swimmers.
The dad’s role in swimming is just as important as the mom’s role. By observing families by the pool, I can freely say that children who swim under surveillance of both parents, mom and dad, are emotionally safer in the water, more communicative with their environment by the pool, more ready for challenges, not only in the pool, but also on the dry.
Today's dads are a big support to moms when it comes to swimming from the earliest age, they are open to new things, education, they are more ready to show feelings in the water, genuine emotions that mean a lot to children, as well as to the whole family. More and more dads come to the pool and swim with their babies. Some of them are more relaxed at the beginning, while some need more time to gain confidence in themselves and parenting skills in the water… However, when they recognise the touch that water gives, dads get more confident and gentler with children as they swim and play together.
Swimming with a baby gives parents the opportunity to find a joint activity from the very birth, and the water allows them to record those unique moments of growing up.
I am a witness of the trend that there is an increasing number of dads in the pool with their babies. Is it because they are less involved in other baby's daily activities during the week, so that in this way they are trying to get the balance in the family or ...? Whatever the reason, it is important that dads are there, involved in the baby's life from an early age, enjoying the water with their children. I have the feeling that moms are somehow safer when dads are in the water with the baby, because entering the pool can be problematic, and dads really do it with ease.
A baby swim lesson is never quite the same. Sometimes it takes more for parents to calm down in the water in order to do special elements with the baby, and trust me, here dads are real masters. While in some other swim lessons, babies need much more caution and focus at which moms are just the best.
Is swimming with your dad a different story?
It can be more fun. Because moms often worry in advance. And that’s perfectly fine. That's why with your dad, in a way, swimming is more relaxed. Dads play with children in the water in their own way. Sometimes, from the mother’s perspective these situations seem “quite risky”, but children often use these situations to learn how to take care of themselves, as they have their parents with them, and they do it in a faster way which is usually more fun. It’s a rare thing to see a mother throwing a three-year-old child off her shoulders into the water while the child is doing stunts in the air. That’s why swimming with dads is more exciting.
When the father throws his child up in the air above the water, the child falls into the water and, for a moment, is left with no touch with the parents. Here we’re talking about seconds without that contact. In this way, the child begins to learn how to react faster and save himself/herself, if it’s necessary.. That throwing can often reflect a situation where the child suddenly falls into the water from a certain height. Sometimes, those seconds in a child's head at the certain height or depth, can save the child's life.
When das and the children swim together, e.g. the child is on the back or stomach of the father, holding on to him independently, and learning in this way how to submerge the head in water and how long he/she wants to remain without air and the contact with the parent…
So, I can say that swimming with dads is more agile. Dads make swimming look like a playground, which is always a different experience for children, but safety comes first.
What is the dad's role in swimming?
First of all, moms can’t do everything on their own! Second of all, even if they can, dads are there to act as dads in swimming too.. Third of all, there is nothing that mommy can do which daddy cannot. The dad’s role in swimming is the same as mom’s, with the only difference in the degree of parents feeling relaxed in the water. The safety of the child in the water does not depend on the sex of the parent. The parents’ motivation to swim varies, but is crucial for every swimmer. And the child’s trust in both parents should be equal.
Sometimes I have to admit that dads tend to cross the line when it comes to being relaxed, so you need to have limits there and know when to stop. Especially when the child playing in the water is clear about what he/she doesn’t want… Listen to the children, observe and follow their reactions, and even when an unwanted situation happens, turn it into a laughter and a positive story, so it stays in their heads as a beautiful memory, not an ugly one. The basic role of parents, dads and moms, in and around the water is to make the child feel and be safe, even when playing!
I will never forget the moment when my Little Fish made a backward roll in the pool at the time when she just started sitting at the edge of the pool on her own. I wasn’t looking or, to be honest, I was just too relaxed at that moment even though she was within my reach and I had a pair of eyes on my back. We were sitting on the wall that divided the big pool from the small one, and we were singing a song. She fell into the big pool on her back, made a backward roll right at the point when we were about to start singing the chorus of the song… I reacted immediately. When she emerged, we started laughing out loud, so as not to get her scared, even though her mother's gaze from afar, directed at me, was very sharp. Yes, the fall happened because we weren’t careful enough, and luckily, I was there. And my reaction to all of this was positive so it didn't make her cry, on the contrary, it made her smile.
Swimming connecting the family.
Especially when it’s going through hard times. How? Water washes away and takes away all the negative things, and brings about positive energy. Swimming creates family magic. It is more beautiful in the water and around it when we are not alone. When we are with our family! Why? Because there is no better playground where we all can play. Water takes us back to our childhood, makes special moments, creates memories, erases “boundaries”, alleviates fears. Swimming makes a family strong and united! With swimming, families and children feel safer, and that is something both parents should ensure, both moms and dads. And dads should always be there, in the water and around it… to "spice it up" as much as possible, to make swimming a more interesting, unique experience.
Let the daddies get back to the pool right away!
So that the mommies can regain their energy, as they may.
Because life is more beautiful when you’re swimming!