Jump! Swim School Campbelltown owner Erin McMullan urged parents to help their children learn vital water safety skills.
“Swimming is fantastic for their development, health and fitness,” she said.
“Lessons are important to teach children the technical skills which could save their lives.”
Recent research found 30 per cent of parents in New South Wales don’t take children under five years of age to swimming lessons.
The Poolwerx research also found that 41 per cent of parents said a ‘lack of money’ was one of biggest reasons their children were not in lessons.
“Cost is definitely a factor,” Ms McMullan said.
“People are also very busy, so finding the time for lessons can be hard but the biggest factor is definitely a lack of awareness about the benefits of swimming lessons.”
Ms McMullan said lessons at schools across Macarthur could range from $10 to $18 per lesson.
“Children can start off with lessons once a week, but obviously the more exposure they get the quicker you will see results,” she said.
“Lessons can start for children aged three months old.
“They can achieve skills at a young age.”
Learn to Swim Week ambassador and former Olympic swim coach, Laurie Lawrence said parents reported one of the biggest obstacles to regular swimming lessons was the perceived expense.
“For Learn to Swim Week we’ve partnered up with hundreds of swim schools around the country, to offer free lessons for the kids,” Laurie said.
“The life of our kids is too important to be jeopardised by constraints on the family budget, so we’re performing this vital service free of charge.
“We want to see the day when we’re able to report that child deaths due to drowning have reached the magic number of zero, and if offering free lessons is what it takes then that’s what we’ll do.”
Several local swimming schools have already registered to provide free swimming lessons, with more expected to join in coming weeks.
To sign up for free swimming lessons for children under five, visit learntoswimweek.com.au.
Originally published by, Kayla Osborne at Wollondilly Advertiser , on 2 September, 2016