Child Drowning Recommendations; Doctors Say Swim Lessons Are A Must

The nation's largest pediatricians group is relaxing its stance against swimming lessons for children younger than 4.

A few small studies now suggest toddlers may be less likely to drown if they've had swim lessons.

That's why the American Academy of Pediatrics says it's fine to enroll children as young as 1 in classes.

The doctors aren't recommending lessons for every young child. Some parents may feel their little ones aren't ready for the water and that's OK.

In the past, the group said swim classes might give toddlers and parents a false sense of security.

The AAP does not recommend swimming lessons for children under one because no scientific studies have shown these infant classes to be effective.

Parents should closely supervise their children while swimming and know how to perform CPR.

Also today, the Consumer Product Safety Commission will release its annual report on childhood drowning. The report details the different risk levels of public pools versus backyard pools and it coincides with a national campaign to help reduce drowning incidents.


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  • by Audra Location: Greenville, visiting on May 28, 2010 at 12:56 PM
    I was learning to swim when I was 4-5 yrs old. It's absolutely a good idea and if you can teach them younger, do it.
  • by erin Location: SC on May 24, 2010 at 07:26 AM
    Are you kidding!? I was on a swim team by age 5! Kids should know how to swim at a young age, it is the parents that should be responsible and keep track of their kids around the water. Even though we could swim we knew we were not allowed to go any where near the water without an adult. It is so much harder to teach someone to swim the older they get.
  • by Anonymous on May 24, 2010 at 04:54 AM
    I got my lessons @ 6 years old. Swim lessons are vital but not before age 4-5. IMHO
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