WaterBabies Launch Summer Term Across Ireland

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    Water Babies, Ireland’s leading baby swim school which now teaches swimming to over 2,400 babies and toddlers in Ireland every week will commence their Summer term of classes this week. Classes are available in Dublin, Louth, Meath, Kildare, Cork, Waterford, Wexford, Kilkenny, Tipperary, Sligo, Galway and Belfast.

    Water Babies offers fun, innovative baby swimming classes, taught by world-class instructors. With a multi-award winning programme which teaches vital water confidence and safety skills from birth, the overall aim is to teach parents to teach their baby how to swim.

    Carol McNally, who runs Water Babies classes in Dublin said “Water Babies is such a magical experience for babies. They absolutely love the sensation of floating in warm water. The repetitive movements of bouncing and splashing provide a great stimulation for their sense of motion and balance”

    The Water Babies programme, which is designed to make the most of babies’ natural affinity with water, teaches confidence and safety, using specialist techniques that see many swimming short distances from as young as 30 months. Baby swimming is an entirely safe and gentle activity which helps parents bond with their baby while giving them a lifetime’s water confidence and safety skills. Swimming from birth stimulates the brain and develops muscles in a safe, relaxed way and water is a familiar environmentthat babies love.

    The Water Babies swimming course is very different to traditional swimming lessons. Because Water Babies only use warm water pools (30° or above) babies can join classes from birth and immunisations are not required or necessary in order to start classes. And while the emphasis is on having fun, the course is carefully structured, with progressive lesson plans for each week.

    Carol loves meeting new parents at Water Babies classes : “Going to baby swimming classes is a fun, interactive and sociable experience where you can meet other parents in the area and help your baby get more comfortable being around other babies and adults. Plus baby swimming is such a wonderful way to exercise, bond and have fun with your baby while your child learns a valuable life-saving skill.”

    The core Water Babies programme lasts one year and is divided into five ten week terms. Each of the 50 lesson plans is carefully worked out to progress learning and understanding. However, fun is also a key element of the Water Babies’ lessons. And overall, the aim is to provide an enjoyable and stimulating activity for both parent and child.

    To find out more about Water Babies swimming lessons around the country, please visit http://www.waterbabies.ie
    For further information, images or interviews please contact:
    Nicola Watkins Public Relations 087-2646858 nicola@nicolawatkinspr.com

    About Water Babies
    • Water Babies is the world’s largest baby swim school, teaching more than 32,000 babies each week through a growing network of family businesses across the UK, Ireland and Sydney, Australia

    • Water Babies in Ireland now has four regional franchises teaching over 2,400 babies & toddlers each week across Dublin, Cork, Galway, Sligo, Wexford, Waterford, Tipperary, Kilkenny, Louth, Kildare, Meath, and Wicklow

    • Having fun and enjoying the water is our primary aim – we never want our Water Babies to actually feel like they’re in a lesson. Most will happily be swimming distances underwater by about 30 months, then naturally start swimming on the surface as their strength increases

    • Water Babies were named “Best Activity Provider for Tots & Toddlers” at the first annual Families First Awards which were held in Dublin in May 2012

    • In the last fiveyears, Water Babies has won seven national consumer awards in the UK: Best Swimming Class, Best Baby Development Activity, Best National Baby & Toddler Development Activity (2010, 2011 and 2012) and Most Outstanding Activity Leader for the Under 5s Nationwide with What’s On 4 Little Ones, and Best Children’s Activity with Tommy’s

    • Since 2009, Water Babies has raised over €66,000 as part of the Big Splash fundraising campaign for Temple St Children’s University Hospital.

    • Babies have natural reflexes that mean they instinctively hold their breath when submerged. However, the Water Babies course actually teaches babies to control their breathing instead of relying on reflexes, thus negating the risk of water inhalation and giving the babies a sense of being fully in control

    • The core points of difference between Water Babies classes and mainstream baby swimming lessons are:

    o We teach babies from birth. Two days was our youngest client, but normally they start at around six weeks

    o The course is highly structured, including clear progression, aims and objectives and a detailed lesson plan for each of the 40 weeks

    o We teach without the use floatation devices. This is in order to prevent children developing a false sense of security and because the water naturally supports their body weight

    o Children lack the strength or co-ordination to swim on the surface until at least two years. From birth we enable them to swim short distances underneath, allowing them to move freely without constraints of gravity

    o Being totally happy underwater creates a complete sense of confidence when on the surface

    • All Water Babies instructors must first complete their full mainstream swimming qualifications with either Swim Ireland or Irish Water Safety before commencing the intensive 25 days Water Babies training course. All instructors must also be qualified lifesavers, renewed bi-annually and be Garda vetted.

    • In July 2011, Water Babies signed a Skills Pledge with the UK’s Institute of Swimming (IoS) to provide premium education and training in baby and pre-school swimming, developing the only ASA externally accredited programme for under four year olds

    • In June 2012 Water Babies teamed up with The University of Manchester to undertake a research study which will be the first of its kind to examine the physical and psychological impact of structured, taught baby swimming classes on parents, babies and the family unit as a whole.

    • Water Babies is the only swim company to have its own in-house, award-winning underwater baby photography unit. Last year, we took more than 73,000 individual shots.

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