Does your kid fear and freak at the idea of being in water? If yes, enrol your child, at the earliest possible in a good summer swimming camp. It’s the right place where the child learns to respect water.
Friendly professional coaches as well aid the child to overcome his fear of water i.e. hydrophobia. The success rate to do away the fear of water is more if a child is not pressurized and is allowed to swim in water at his own pace.
To get rid of fear of water, the parents as well as swimming coaches necessitate a lot of patience and also need to encourage the kids a lot, even on small achievements.
Strategies to off-load the fear of water
- Accustom the kids with water:
- Get the kid close to the pool side and make him aware of the water rules.
- The pool should be shallow enough for the child to easily walk through it.
- Adults/coaches should be permitted to stay near the child to provide support.
- The use of floatation equipment like water wings should be avoided because it forms a fictitious protection to the kids, which is problematic to overcome the water fear later.
- Develop a feel of water:
- Let the child develop positive feeling for water. Explain that water is safe and interact with talks like how water looks and that being in water can be fun, etc. Such talks comfort the child and make them to forget about the water fear
- Encourage the child to splash with hands and kick their feet inside water, sitting at the boundary of the swimming pool.
- Blowing of bubbles:
- Sitting or standing in the water, keeping their mouth close to the water surface, the coaches motivate the kids to blow bubbles and produce sounds. This fun-filled activity brings the kids close to water.
- Recuperate the toys:
- Throw the toys like rings into the shallow water and ask the kids to bring them back. This is an easy way to teach a kid to go underwater for some time to fetch the toy from the bottom of the pool, without giving it a single thought.
- Gradually step the child into the water:
- From the edge of water, the coach lets the child enter the water by holding him in the hands under the armpits such that the child is on his belly on the surface of water.
- Coaches motivate the child to lift up the feet and start kicking.
- Coaches repeat the same procedure on their back. Some children do find this petrifying and complicated. But, the coaches divert their attention by making them sing songs or making alphabets (I or T) on their backs. This enables the child to progress towards floating in the water.
- Whizz to adult/Coach:
- The coach stays near to the child, who is probably at the edge of the pool.
- He encourages the child to kick off to push himself forward to reach him.
- If the child manages to reach the coach, the coach moves back again and again. The child in turn kicks and performs arm movements to reach the coach and progresses towards floating in water, overcoming the fear of water.