Upon completion of lessons, you may see behaviors in the child's swimming at home that is not consistent with what your child was doing during lessons. This is a natural progression for your child. As he becomes more comfortable and confident in the water, he will begin to experiment and explore the aquatic environment. It is important to know that this does not mean that your child has "forgotten" the skills learned during ISR lessons. However, it may be necessary to schedule a Maintenance Lesson.
Maintenance Lessons are designed to fine-tune your child's skills or to prevent problems from developing in your child's technique. A few months after completion of ISR lessons, your child may develop unwanted habits out of regular play time in the pool. For example, your child may begin to swim farther without rolling over for breath or may try swimming with her head out of water. Some habits formed from normal exploration in the water may begin to affect your child's ability to swim and float.
During Maintenance Lessons, I will discuss with you different ways to swim with your child to reinforce the correct swimming behaviors and how to control the swimming environment to avoid negative behaviors. There are no set time frames for Maintenance Lessons. They are contingent upon the behaviors being exhibited by your child. In most cases, behaviors can be reinforced or corrected in one or two Maintenance Lessons. However, some parents choose to bring their children for maintenance Lessons once a week or every two weeks throughout the summer to consistently reinforce proper swimming behaviors.
ISR recommends that all students, especially between the ages of 12 months and 4 years, return to an ISR Instructor once a year for Refresher Lessons. Refresher lessons usually last about half of the time if took the child to become fully skilled the first season.
Children grow physically, emotionally, and mentally very quickly in the first six years of their lives. Their center of gravity will change as their limbs become longer and their concept of water changes as their brains become more advanced.
Refresher Lessons help our students assimilate their new bodies and minds to the skills they previously learned so they can continue to swim safely and effectively. It is important to remember that your child does not "forget" the skills acquired with ISR. However, most children are not regularly in the water in the winter and during this extended period of time your child will mature mentally and physically. Refresher Lessons are designed to help your child adjust her swim and float to her new more mature body and mind and to reinforce her confidence in the water.