With summer hitting the UK and school holidays just about to break, you’ll no doubt be thinking of fun summer activities you can get your foster children involved in over the holidays.
How about helping raise a swimming superstar?!
Whether those in your care are young children or older teenagers, it’s never too early or too late! Learning to swim is not only a fun, social activity but it also provides valuable health and fitness benefits. And it doesn’t matter what age, size, or ability your kids are at with swimming – everyone from beginners to the more advanced can take part.
Here are five top reasons why you and your family should jump on the swimming bandwagon:
- It’s great for healthy lungs, heart, improved strength, fitness, and flexibility, and can also help with balance and posture. Swimming helps to get the blood pumping and is a great form of exercise for both you and your foster children.
- Swimming is a confidence and self-esteem builder! If your foster child is starting out as a beginner, make sure you encourage them and build them up at every milestone. Maybe it’s swimming a few strokes without stopping, or perhaps it’s doing a whole width on their own – whatever the achievement, make sure you build up their confidence and keep cheering them on along the way. You could even think about little medals or star charts to help keep track of their successes.
- Swimming helps to reduce stress, tension, and is the perfect way to unwind. Water helps us to feel relaxed and feel mentally refreshed, aided by the release of the feel-good hormone, serotonin.
- Sleep! Yes, swimming will help aid a better night’s sleep – and who doesn’t love a good, deep sleep! Swimmers benefit from better sleep compared to non-swimmers, with fewer episodes of insomnia, light sleeping, and early waking.
- Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, swimming can save lives! It’s a skill that stays for a lifetime, and as children get older, it may be an important life skill to have, either for themselves or for someone else.
Learning to swim doesn’t have to be expensive either – all you need is a little creativity! There are “swim for free” offers to local residents in various pools in and around Manchester. The Salford Community Leisure Centre also offers great swimming facilities, as does Active Hyde – there are many more options in the North West however, so do take the time to look around!
Let us know about your swimming superstars – do you have any success stories? We’d love to hear from you so please contact our community and let us know. We’d be delighted to hear from you!