Preterm birth, also known as premature birth, is the birth of a baby at fewer than 37 weeks' gestational age. These babies are known as preemies or premies. Symptoms of preterm labor include uterine contractions which occur more often than every ten minutes or the leaking of fluid from the vagina.
Taking our daughter Esme swimming at only 10 weeks old was quite daunting, especially because she was born 5 weeks premature. We never regret it! It's the best thing we did and we strongly believe it has helped her development. We will never forget our Water Babies experiences and teachers!
Babies who are worn sleep better, cry less, nurse and gain weight better, and tend to be more alert and interact with the world around them. Kangaroo care, holding a premature baby skin-to-skin, has been proven to promote physical growth and neurological development in tiny babies.
Even though John was a month premature, he started Water Babies at 6 weeks. He's 3 years old now, is swimming on the surface of the water by himself and enjoys every minute of the class! Linda & John Blackrock; Our wee girl was born prematurely and had her first Water Babies lesson at six weeks, and the team have been fantastic all the way.
Swimming lessons for premature babies Help them to catch up. If your baby was born prematurely, they may experience some delays in the development of their motor skills, as well as appropriate muscle tone, which can in turn impact on other developmental milestones.
Most babies up to six months of age can actually swim, with your help, of course! If you start early you can take advantage of your baby's natural ability to do basic strokes. Also, your baby's inbuilt gag reflex is generally at its strongest before six months.
Baby swim classes are usually made up of a small group of parents and babies. The classes are usually arranged by age. If you join a beginners' class it will be everyone else's first time too. Some organisations also offer specific classes for babies who are premature or have additional needs.