Safer, Smarter, Swimming

It's a life-long lesson, which experts say, is a smart one too. World first research has proven, regular and ongoing learn-to-swim lessons from a young age, can make your kids 'smarter'.

The four-year university study, was conducted by Griffith Institute for Educational Research, and supported by Swim Australia - the leading national authority on learn-to-swim and water safety.Kids fun

The study surveyed the parents of 7000 children aged five years and under, from Australia, New Zealand and the US. The study was reinforced by also testing individual children.

Researcher, Professor Robyn Jorgensen, said many results had exceeded expectations and showed swimming children had an advantage when starting school.

"Children who had learned how to swim from a young age, were anywhere from six to 15 months ahead of the normal population, when it came to cognitive skills, problem solving in mathematics, counting, language and following instructions." Professor Jorgensen said.

While researchers and industry experts expected swimming kids to show some physical advancement than their non-swimming friends, they were positively surprised by the overwhelming literacy and numeracy results as well.

"For a long time, we've understood the benefits of swimming - physical, emotionally, socially - but we are very excited to finally have these published for the world to see and benefit." Swim Australia CEO, Ross Gage said.

" We are delighted, the Australian Unity supported learn-to-swim programs provided in Swim Australia Registered Swim Schools around the country, are rich in skills and developmental activities, which could enhance the lives of children, in and out of the water.

"Without the support of our learn-to-swim partner, Australian Unity, funding such as wonderful story, wouldn't have been possible." Mr Gage added.

Professor Jorgensen concluded, "our research is categorical, evidence-based and shows, early years swimming has children well ahead in many of the skills and processes they will apply, once at school."

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Sourced from the official newsletter of Swim Australia's newsletter for parents issue 22 Spring 2013