I don’t remember not knowing how to swim. My mom taught swim lessons, and both my brother and I could swim when we were very young. When I was pregnant with The Bear 11 years ago, the only two things I knew I wanted to do as a parent was breastfeed and swim with my baby (though not simultaneously). I’ve always loved the water, and I wanted my children to grow up with the same enjoyment of swimming as I did.
We have a pool in our backyard– something my Midwestern husband insisted on when we decided to move to Austin nearly 10 years ago– so our family swims almost daily in the summer. While it may not be an intense exercise experience, our after-dinner swims give our hot summer evenings activity and family focus. I know that my kids will grow up with swimming as one of the bits of their family communal memory.
When we were in London over Spring Break, we went out to Queen Elizabeth II Park to swim in the Olympic pool. Within the sweeping concrete and glass building are two pools– the competition pool and the training pool– and we got to go for a dip.
Fittingly, we were joined by a friend of mine who has a daughter several months younger than The Bear, and it was with these two that we went swimming when The Bear was a baby. How time flies!
The experience was fantastic, paddling around in the pool and thinking about the competition that took place there. It was a thrill to swim in the light-filled pool. The kids were also impressed by the technology of the complex, mesmerized as we watched the floor of the training pool lower from a kiddie wading pool to a deeper teaching pool.
Today, as I start teaching swim lessons for yet another summer, I am reminded of how much freedom being a swimmer has brought into my life. Certainly I think all people should learn to swim (even adults!) for their safety, but I also think that swimming is a way for people of any age, any size, and any athletic ability to enjoy how their body moves. It is this idea that drew me last summer to Aqua Yoga, a low-impact, breath-and-body experience that can benefit absolutely anyone.
I’m drawn to the water and am grateful to share my enjoyment of aqua fitness with others.
Good health and great happiness to you.