Many pediatricians recommend swimming as the VERY BEST developmental activity for children.
Physical Benefits of Swimming
Low injury rate
Swimming is relatively injury free in comparison to other youth sports
High quality aerobic endurance development
Swimming develops high quality aerobic endurance; the most important key to physical fitness. In other sports, an hour of practice may yield as little as 10 minutes of meaningful exercise. Age group swimming teams use every precious minute of practice time developing fitness and teaching skills.
More thorough muscular development
Swimming does a better job in proportional muscular development by using all the body's major muscle groups. No other sport does this as well.
Enhancement of natural flexibility
Swimming enhances children's natural flexibility (at a time when they ordinarily begin to lose it) by exercising all their major joints through a full range of motion.
Great coordination development
Swimming helps develop superior coordination because it requires combinations of complex movements of all parts of the body, enhancing harmonious muscle function, grace and fluidity of movement.
Swimming is a sport that will bring children fitness and enjoyment for life. Participants in Master's swimming programs are still training and racing well into their 80's.
Cultivates positive self-esteem
In an era where children struggle with self-esteem, positive body image and childhood obesity-related illnesses, swimming cultivates a positive mental attitude, high self-esteem and healthy fitness levels
Social Development Benefits of Swimming
Unlike many other sports, competitive swimming is available to boys and girls of all ages. This is actually more important than it seems at first glance. Most other organized activities tend to segregate by age and sex. On a swim team, a ten year old girl can be just as important as a sixteen year old boy. Small boys and girls have equal rights on swim teams, too. It is an exciting individual and team sport.
Larger social circle of development
It encourages a more rounded social development. This is partly related to the above paragraph and swimming becomes a family type activity involving other swimmers, coaches, officials and parents. It leads to a much wider circle of friends
Top academic achieving sport
It promotes self-organization and discipline. Children who choose to swim, generally organize their daily activities due to the tight schedule and this often shows up in the increased ability to focus on specific tasks. It is one of the top academically achieving sports.
Swimming motivates participants to strive for self improvement and teaches goal orientation.
In open meets, Juniors get a chance to swim in the same events as Seniors and Champions in a manner denied in other sports.
Swimming teaches the life lessons of sport and sportsmanship which include learning to deal with winning and losing, as well as working with officials, teammates and coaches. Swimming is an exciting individual and team sport.