In this level we aim for complete water comfort. We start with encouraging the use of the babies’ intrinsic ability to hold their breath (known as the bradycardic response). Babies have this natural ability until roughly 6 months, so we try to get them to practice without submerging at first, until we feel comfortable that they are doing it with small cups of water over their heads. There are songs, actions and visually stimulating toys to encourage an engaging time. These classes are with baby and one parent or caregiver in the water and limited to 6 places in each class.
Whether your child is new to swimming lessons, or have been promoted from Sea Urchin, you will find that they are a bit physically stronger than they used to be and can develop more gross motor skills. We are now able to submerge them for a few seconds, as well as try to get them comfortable on their backs for floating.
We also start to teach safe falls into the water, where we teach to them to turn around and swim back to the place of entry. This is an important if not the most important skill when it comes to your children potentially saving their own lives. These classes are child with parent or caregiver and limited to 6 places in each class.
This level was designed for the children who are going to learn the basics by 19 months and would like to still be in the water with their parents because they aren’t ready just yet to be on their own in a class with their teacher. (and that’s okay!) We will gently encourage them to blow bubbles, float on their back, paddle their arms and kick their legs until they reach the level or age when they need to move up to the independent level.