As well as hating swimming underwater, N has also never been keen on swimming on his back. Our instructors always said from the start that babies can sometimes dislike it, so of course N has taken this to extremes. All I can say is that he’s a pro at flipping himself back onto his front!
It’s brilliant to see him swimming (pretty speedily for such a little boy) from way down the pool all on his own on his front on the woggle. He loves swimming on the woggle usually. But tell or show him to swim on his back andit’s another story. It’s quite demoralising, to see him compared to the others in the class who’re happily kicking the width of the pool on their back with no support. He’s not even willing to try it with me holding him.
In the past we’ve tried him lying with his back against my chest, holding his hands with him ‘sitting’ semi on his back, holding him securely and looking over so he can see me there…he won’t have any of it.
We did have one week where he was happy to hold the woggle underneath and round him, to kick on his back, but that was just one week.
I’m not sure whether he dislikes putting his head back in the water, although he likes doing it when the toddlers ‘wash their hair’. Or if it’s just the going backwards and not being able to see where he’s going. It’s madness really, because my view is that swimming on your back is so much easier because you can just chill out when you get tired and you don’t sink like you might on your front.
What he really needs to get the hang of from a safety perspective is being able to float. Because it’s on his back he just refuses, and instead of it being a chilled out end of lesson gentle activity, he’s fighting me and flipping over, trying to climb on my back. I even tried comparing star floats to how he was lying on his bed that morning, as he made a perfect star shape then. But in the water, it’s a definite no no. He has to be swimming on his front (or jumping in) to be happy.
One bonus with his hating being on his back, is that if he ever falls in and ends up on his back, he’ll have no problems flipping himself over
Do your children only like swimming one way or the other?
Disclosure: We blog for Water Babies, all opinions, words and thoughts are our own.