Guilt. Oh the guilt.
Parenting is full of it. Am I working too much? Am I not working enough? Is he watching too much TV? Why wasn’t I more patient with him today?
One of my biggest – and most legit – sources of parental guilt though is that I’ve yet to take my four-year old swimming. After all, if there’s one thing that I should be doing as a parent it’s teaching my kid a skill that could save his life, right?
I’ve been building up to taking him for a while, but when I saw that Zoggs were looking for parents of four-year-old boys to test out some new swimming kit, it was the giant kick up the backside I needed.
So I signed up, and kit delivery day was akin to Christmas, with the Zoggs Water Wings accompanied by some cool swimming shorts, goggles and seal flip toys. We of course tried them all on immediately.
Kid’s dad has taken him swimming a couple of times, although he’s still far from confident and doesn’t even like sitting down in the bath so I knew I had my work cut out for me to help him feel secure in the water.
We started by testing out the kit in the water. The seal flip toys were great – and within minutes my bath-shy boy was laying ON HIS TUMMY in the water, trying to flip them over. I couldn’t believe it. A genuine success from the get-go. We also tried on the Water Wings for size and he loved them. So far so good.
And so to the pool. Water Wings on, we eased ourselves into the learner pool at the local leisure centre. We started with lots of walking about in the water to get him used to the sensation, before encouraging him onto his tummy to practice some kicking. And he did REALLY WELL. Obviously he wasn’t doing lengths of front crawl or anything, but he was a million times more confident than I expected him to be and I’m certain that the buoyancy of the Wings contributed to him feeling safe and secure in the water.
We tried to use the Seal Flips in the pool too, but they were too much of a success as they were commandeered by another child in the pool, and he no longer wants to take them with him in case they get stolen from him again…
The acid test for me though was whether he actually enjoyed the swimming or not, and the verdict? “I love swimming, Mummy”.
We’ve been swimming twice more since, with the Water Wings and whilst he’s still not a swimmer, he’s gaining in confidence with every visit and enjoys being in the water. I definitely foresee this kit being in our lives for the foreseeable future. Thanks, Zoggs!
*Full disclaimer. The Zoggs Water Wings and other kit were sent to me for free in exchange for a review. All feedback and four-year-old children my own.