Dealing With a Fear of Water
If your child is terrified of the water, you may be tempted to discontinue swim lessons entirely. Some parents may feel as though they are putting their child through a difficult experience while others may not see the value in swimming lessons if their child isn’t enjoying it. Though there are some circumstances under which swim lessons might be discontinued, there are also many compelling reasons to keep trying.
Children Afraid of Water Are More Likely to Panic
If your child is afraid of water, they are more likely to panic if they ever fall into water. Panic is what contributes to drowning, and this makes a child who is afraid of water and hasn’t learned how to swim incredibly vulnerable. Your child may never enjoy the water, but teaching your child to at least understand it could mean the difference between life and death.
Discontinuing Lessons Sets a Bad Precedent
When you tell your child they can avoid learning how to swim because it makes them uncomfortable, you’re also telling them that they can avoid other things, too. If your child is simply afraid or uncomfortable around water for no particular reason, they may also be tempted to quit other things for similar reasons. Children that aren’t encouraged to do new things will become timid and learn to avoid new experiences rather than embrace them. Realizing that swimming is a fun and engaging social experience could be your child’s first step into a whole new world.
There are some circumstances under which swim lessons should be discontinued until a professional can be consulted. If the child’s safety is at risk, swimming lessons should immediately end. You should also question whether your child doesn’t like swimming or doesn’t like the swimming lessons they are experiencing. A poor coach or a poor class could be contributing to your child’s fears.