We are registering our son in a parent and baby swimming class starting in January. He loves the bath, so we are looking forward to introducing him to the pool. He will be 8 months old at that time. We are starting to think about the logistics of taking a baby to the pool. Do you bring the stroller with you? If yes, where do store it while you are in the pool? If no, how do you get changed while taking care of the baby? How do you get in the pool while carrying the baby? At the moment, we are thinking that both my husband and I might have to attend swimming lessons to solve these issues. But, I would like to be able to go on my own.

Any advice on the logistics of infant swimming lessons?

asked 08 Dec '09, 03:19

cat_g's gravatar image

accept rate: 25%


Good call on tag-teaming. I always had my husband there for help the first time I got my son in water. Made me more at ease, and figuring out the logistics went smoother.

(08 Dec '09, 06:20) DarwinsMom

I also took my daughter to swimming lessons when she was 8 months old. I would actually suggest taking your stroller or infant car seat. I tried it both ways and it was a lot easier for me with the stroller or car seat.

Here's what you do when you are alone:

Wear your bathing suit under your clothes (BUT remember to bring underwear/bra for when you get out of the pool!)

Dress your baby in easily removeable clothing (no onesies/bodysuits)

Bring the stroller into the dressing room because the floor will likely be wet/muddy and without the stroller there is no where to set down your baby. The benches are usually very narrow without backs (locker-room style). Get youself ready first, then your baby. Sometimes the dressing areas will have a baby changing table on the wall in the handicapped shower area or in the handicapped bathroom stall, if so take advantage!

You can usually keep the stroller either in the dressing room or next to the pool.

As for entering the pool with the baby. This is the first lesson they will teach you! :) If for some strange reason they don't, just watch the other parents or ask the teacher. You basically hold the baby in one arm and hold the hand rail with the other hand. The lesson usually starts with an introduction outside of the pool.

When you get out, shower with your baby and take your baby's bathing suit off while showering. It comes off better when it's under running water for some reason.

Then change your baby into warm clothes plus a hat or hood to keep thier head warm from their wet hair. Then change youself and then you'll be on your way. :)

Have fun, I'm sure you'll love it!

P.S. The public pools in Washington don't allow disposable swim diapers. You might want to check your pool. I bought the iplay brand that is built into the swim suit.


answered 08 Dec '09, 09:43

Sabrina's gravatar image

accept rate: 21%

I took my older daughter to swimming lessons from when she was about 8 months old.

I didn't bother with the stroller, just carried her in.

Changing wasn't a hassle: I just gave her different (small) toys to play with while I was changing. It took a little longer, but I made sure I was there with plenty of time to spare.

There were two pools where I went: one had a gradual entry ramp that made it very easy to carry her in. To get into the other one, the teacher usually held her while I got in or I just put her between the ladder handles and she sat on the side of the pool while I got in.

I think the biggest thing is to just take your time: don't rush.


answered 08 Dec '09, 03:25

Peter%20K.'s gravatar image

Peter K.
accept rate: 0%

Yep. Just like any other trip to the pool, just go a little slower and take your time. Most importantly have fun.

(08 Dec '09, 17:27) MrChrister

Ah, the joys of swimming lessons. Seriously, they're lovely - but can be difficult logistically.

If you can both go, it'll make life easier, certainly until your son is old enough to walk. I can now just about manage taking all three children to a swimming lesson on my own, but it's tight. It will make changing a lot easier for you if you're both there - not only in terms of looking after the baby during changing itself, but there's also a big difference between coming out of the shower to be welcomed by a ready towel and showering, then holding the baby on your hip while you desperately try to unlock the locker, open it, get the bags out and get a towel ready... all while your baby is getting cold and starting to scream!

If you can possibly avoid taking the stroller, do so - if your swimming pool is anything like ours, there won't be much room to store things like that, and they can get in the way for other parents. On the other hand, maybe your pool is better equipped. Perhaps you could pop down there if it's close, and see what other parents are doing for some December lessons?

I don't remember the details of getting in the pool with Tom - our twins were already easily walking before our first swimming lesson with them. (I'm afraid we just couldn't face taking all three swimming when the twins were little. We bottled out.) Presumably at 8 months your son is able to sit up and still fairly easily - in which case you lower yourself into the water with him on the side, and then pick him up. Don't forget that there'll be plenty of other parents there too!

Best of luck - hope all of you enjoy it :)


answered 08 Dec '09, 06:29

Jon%20Skeet's gravatar image

Jon Skeet
accept rate: 35%

When I lifeguarded at the Y, several parents would bring in their stroller or car seat and leave it at the side of the deck while they were in the water (if you are uncertain whether this is okay, ask the lifeguard on duty, the instructor or a manager what would be acceptable). We also had a handicap accessible ramp into our pool that they were able to use for entering and exiting.


answered 08 Dec '09, 05:02

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accept rate: 8%

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Asked: 08 Dec '09, 03:19

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Last updated: 08 Dec '09, 09:43