Take the child in the water for a few days and let them be comfortable. Play with them and let them enjoy so they have no fear in the pool. Once they enjoy water half the problem is solved. Then start with their leg kick practice, first against the wall and then against a board. Give them a float and make them paddle in the water. After a few days, teach them to use hands in dog paddling. Once comfortable, slowly take the float off and make them swim. After learning how to float, you can teach them free style followed by different strokes.
I come from a different perspective on whether you can "force" a kid to learn how to swim. Perhaps it's because of my location and lifestyle. We subsistence fish in the summers, and filling the freezer every year is a vital part of our food supply. We fish from the shore and from boats (and less frequently, through the ice) and our children are a regular part of this. Although they wear life jackets, basic water skills are very important. So I do take my kids swimming, and I do "force" them to learn, even if they are reluctant. My 5-year-old is a competent swimmer; my 3-year-old can hold his breath underwater and knows to hold onto a flotation device; my 1-year-old obviously doesn't do much more than splash. But I just bring this up to say that you will not necessarily traumatize your child by forcing them to do something they fear or dread, as long as you are calm, supportive, and prepare them thoroughly for what to expect each step of the way. Good luck!
I would suggest you to understand his feeling behind his scared. The better you will understand his feeling, what your kids are experiencing, the easier and more effective the process of teaching them to swim will be. Then accordingly respond to your child needs, believe me the learning process will become fun and be more effective for both of you.
We take our son to swimming at the YMCA and now at one of the high schools. It is great for fundamental swimming lessons, exercise and something we could all do together. The social interaction is also a key development tool which is prepping our son for school (he is 3).
As a parent, our crucial role is to make them feel comfortable by equipping them with the proper safety gear on my experience the fear of water is lessened drastically, there are also fun water games that he might enjoy, check this out. Have more patience with him, and continue to encourage him.
Teaching a child to swim can be a fun and rewarding experience. It's important to start with basic skills, like blowing bubbles and kicking, before moving on to strokes. Encourage your child with positive reinforcement and make sure they feel comfortable and safe in the water. Always supervise them closely.
Teaching a child to swim can be a rewarding experience, but it requires patience, safety precautions, and a positive approach. Here are some tips to help you teach a child to swim:
Start Early: The earlier you introduce your child to the water, the more comfortable they are likely to become. Begin with gentle water play in a shallow area.
Choose the Right Location: Opt for a safe and controlled environment, such as a swimming pool or a designated children's area at a beach or lake.
Safety First: Always prioritize safety. Ensure there is appropriate supervision, and consider using flotation devices like swim vests or arm floaties for added safety, especially for beginners.
Build Trust: Establish trust and comfort in the water by holding your child, playing games, and letting them splash and get used to the sensation of being in water.
Blowing Bubbles: Teach your child to blow bubbles in the water as a first step. This helps them get used to putting their face in the water and breathing rhythmically.
Floatation and Buoyancy: Encourage your child to float on their back with your support. This is an important safety skill, and it helps them feel secure in the water.
Kicking and Leg Movements: Teach them to kick their legs while holding onto the poolside or a floating object. Make it fun by pretending they are "swimming like a fish."
Arm Movements: Show them basic arm movements like paddling and reaching. Use toys or floating objects to make practicing more engaging.
Submersion: Gradually introduce submersion by having your child dip their head underwater or counting to three before they go under. Be patient, and never force them.
Positive Reinforcement: Praise and reward your child's efforts and achievements. Positive reinforcement can boost their confidence and motivation.
Consistency: Regular practice is key to developing swimming skills. Try to make swimming a fun and routine activity.
Enroll in Swim Lessons: Consider enrolling your child in formal swim lessons led by a certified swim instructor, especially as they progress to more advanced skills. These lessons often follow a structured curriculum tailored to different age groups and skill levels.
Be Patient and Encouraging: Every child progresses at their own pace. Be patient, understanding, and encouraging throughout the learning process. Avoid expressing frustration or pressure.
Safety Rules: Teach your child basic water safety rules, such as never swimming alone, not running near the pool, and respecting pool rules.
Lead by Example: Demonstrate good swimming habits and safety measures by being a role model.
Remember that the goal is not only to teach your child to swim but also to help them develop a lifelong love and respect for the water. Swimming should be a positive and enjoyable experience, so make it fun and keep safety as a top priority.