Living where we do, close to the coast in Swansea, my husband and I both feel it’s really important for our children to learn to swim.
Rhys has been having lessons for a few years now and is a pretty confident swimmer these days. Nerys has been learning properly for about 4 months and has come on so well in that short time. I think they’ve both been helped by us spending a lot of time in the water last summer.
We visited the local pool lots and spent countless hours at the beach with the glorious weather we had.
Swimming as a family is something we all really enjoy these days, and there are so many benefits to it too.
Here are just 5 of the amazing benefits of swimming for the whole family:
1. Swimming is great exercise
Whether you get stuck into serious lengths at the pool or just splash around with your children, swimming is a great way for the whole family to get some exercise.
It’s a great full-body workout which exercises all the major muscle groups while also strengthening the heart, lungs and respiratory system. The real beauty of it is that it’s an easy activity to get the family involved in, that doesn’t require lots of expensive equipment.
All you really need is swimwear and a local pool or beach to splash around in.
2. Swimming makes us all feel happier
When we go swimming the physical activity makes our bodies release wonderful, feel-good endorphins.
Endorphins make us feel happier and more positive. They also act as natural painkillers, so any aches and pains feel better too.
Studies have found that swimming for just half an hour, a few times a week, can make us feel happier and less stressed. It also reduces feelings of depression and anxiety. No wonder my family felt so happy last summer when we were at the beach swimming several times a week!
3. It can boost self confidence and body image
Swimming really does work the whole body, which then burns fat and tones our muscles, helping us to feel fitter and stronger. This then gives us a confidence boost and helps us feel better about ourselves.
For our children learning to swim can be great for self confidence. Learning new skills in the water, and reaching milestones like being able swim a set distance unaided, really helps children learn what they’re capable of if they stick with something.
I also think that going to the pool as a family can be great for promoting a positive body image.
Putting on a swimming costume and showing your children that you’re proud of your body and what it can do can really help children to grow up with a good, positive body image. You can get some really fun, colourful swimming costumes from TYR to stand out at the pool, rather than trying to hide in a plain black one.
4. Swimming boosts our brain health
Swimming doesn’t just make our bodies stronger and healthier, it can also boost our brain health too.
There was a study carried out that found that the simple act of just being in water boost the flow of blood to our brains. This is beneficial to the whole family as a good, healthy flow of blood to the brain supplies it with oxygen, glucose and nutrients
Other studies have also found that cardiovascular activity, like swimming, causes oxygenated blood to be pumped more efficiently around our bodies. This again boost the flow of blood to the brain.
5. It helps everyone sleep better
I’m all for anything that will help my family get a better night’s sleep.
Studies have shown that swimming can help us get just this. One study in particular found that older adults with insomnia had an improvement in the amount and quality of sleep they got each night after starting regular aerobic exercise.
I know that my children always seem tired, in that good, healthy way, after spending time at the pool or swimming at the beach, which then helps them sleep more deeply at night.
Swimming really is such a great form of exercise, and can be a great fun activity for the whole family to enjoy.
How often do you take your children swimming?
Disclaimer: this is a collaborative post