Baby's first contact with water

The baby's first contact with water should be special for him and his parents. They are the only ones who can give you the security and confidence you need to adapt to a new environment that is otherwise familiar. Cruz Lobo Sanz, Infant Aquatic Education and Activity monitor of the Baby Swim pool, reveals to us in this interview what are the secrets of a good adaptation of the baby to the aquatic environment.

How should the baby's first contact with water occur?
The first contact with water must be through play because babies do not yet understand what we are going to do. We cannot tell a baby to go to work because everything in his life is to play. With the intervention of the father or mother, teaching them is easier.

It is very important for parents to get into the pool with them, because babies don't know you at first and you have to have parental support. In addition, it is convenient to teach parents so that when they go to the beach or the pool they can continue practicing dives, jumps ... and avoid, many times, sudden movements that are not recommended for children of these ages. In the water, everything should be smooth and calm, with a lot of relaxation, tranquility, patience and security in the parents.

What is the best way to put the child in the water, getting him wet little by little or dipping him in one go?
When we start, we take them, hug them gently, with their mother next to them and we introduce them little by little by pouring water on them. If the child does not cry, we put the material directly on him, and if he cries that day we act differently, we do not put material on him, we are going to play and let him become familiar, without haste. The risk we run is that the child begins to fear water the first day. Therefore, contact with water should be done little by little, with pampering, sweet words and games.

Do babies over one year of age have any advantage when it comes to becoming familiar with water?
We put the same material on them, although their progress is faster because they are older, since they know how to walk and move their arms. A baby with 5 months, apart from acquiring the fetal position always with the little legs on the chest, will have a harder time stretching. In contrast, 17-month-olds already know how to walk and their progress is faster. However, it always depends a lot on the child and the parents.

What do we have to do to gain the trust of babies?
For parents to trust you, it is important that they see that you are prepared. The main thing is that the child is calm. It is normal that, at first, they cry because everything is new, the material, the water, the monitor, even, sometimes, there is a lot of noise.

Little by little, we are putting the baby in the water, while we play with him. Later, the father leaves it to you so that he knows you and has confidence in you. At first, you do the exercises, and then you teach the parents how to do them.

What should we take into account when doing the dives to the baby?
The first dives we must do ourselves. Then we can teach them to parents. There are times when they swallow a little water, it is normal, but the more dives they do, not always on the same day, the more they learn. The normal thing is three or four dives a day, also depending a little on the child, and only one, if he has swallowed water and begins to complain, because we do not want him to take a habit of dives.

The technique we use to make them aware of a dive is to blow a little in their faces first. This is how they instinctively prepare. Diving is very important for survival in the water. If the baby is ready for a dive, he will close the glottis by himself and will not swallow water.

You can read more articles similar to Baby's first contact with water, in the category of on-site swimming.

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