This post was sponsored by SwimWays as part of an Ambassador Program for Influence Central and all opinions expressed in my post are my own.
When we lived in Texas, our apartment complex had a pool, but I don’t think in the three years we lived there, I EVER took Ella swimming by myself.
Even with one child, swimming for kids seemed like a two-adult situation.
But last summer, I realized that another Arizona summer would probably do me in if I didn’t buckle down and start taking the girls on my own.
Especially because swimming for kids – at least my kids – is their number one summer activity.
And if you don’t take advantage of the hundreds of pool days that Arizona offers, what’s even the point of living here?
Plus, I love that it wears my girls out so that they sleep like rocks.
With school out and the temperature crossing 100 every day now, I’m gearing up for our 2-3 pool trips per week.
Last summer, I picked up some good tricks for making our pool trips low-stress for all of us and I was surprised that when October rolled around and it started being too chilly to swim comfortably, I was SAD to see the summer end.
And as the temperatures started rising last month, I was thrilled to feel excitement about our pool visits coming back.
Here are some tricks I’ve picked up for making a pool trip realistic and fun, especially when you’re flying solo!
tips for taking kids to the pool
- Have the right swim gear. This was the game changer for me. We bought those little arm floaties for the bigger girls a few years ago and that gives so much independence swimming for kids. Even Ella, who is a strong swimmer, will sometimes slip them on after a while just to give herself a rest. Tally is too small for those this year, so we got a Baby Spring Float Sun Canopy, which I discovered a few years ago when we lived with my parents and they had several of them. It’s the #1 selling baby float in the U.S. and the large circumference and the inner spring make it really stable. Plus, the removable canopy offers extra sun protection which is really important when it’s 115 degrees outside and the sun is beating down. Without these products, there’s no way I could juggle three other children at the pool on my own AND keep my baby happy.
- Invest in a few pool toys. I don’t want to drag a chest of toys with us every time, but last summer we bought some diving toys and goggles for all the girls and that’s upped the swimming fun factor quite a bit. I’m not wild about pool activities like Marco Polo at this point in my children’s life, so having some toys for them keeps it fun without me having to play endless games.
- Consider rash guards. One of my least favorite parts of going to the pool on my own is putting sunscreen on everyone. All my girls have rash guards and it cuts down significantly on how much sunscreen they need, since their shoulders, backs, chests, and arms all have good coverage. It definitely makes it a LOT easier.
- Take Snacks. I’ve mentioned before that I am a NOT a good snack mom (every day! why so many snacks?!) but last year, I realized that if I was going to go to the effort of taking everyone to the pool, I darn well didn’t want to come home 30 minutes later because everyone was wasting away from (possibly imaginary) hunger. Now I specifically try to remember to buy snacks that won’t melt or go bad in the heat and everyone (me included!) enjoys some snacks. And let’s be honest, the snacks might be the best part of swimming for kids.
- Recognize that this is not a day at a resort pool. Swimming with kids is a whole different ball game and I just had to adjust my mindset. This wasn’t going to be relaxing with a magazine or book – it’s basically being in full-on mom mode monitoring pool safety for kids for an hour or two. But when I see it as quality time with my children, a time when I can’t really look at my phone for several hours, and I can just enjoy being outdoors? It’s pretty magical.
- The pool trip isn’t over until it is OVER. My girls know that the price of going to the pool so often is that everyone has to help clean up when we get home. All the swim suits get laid out to dry, towels go in the dryer, arm floaties and Baby Spring Float Sun Canopy are hung up in the garage for the next time, and any empty water bottles or snack bags get put away or thrown away. That way, when we go a few days later, everything is clean and ready to go and my house isn’t destroyed all the time by soggy swim gear.
Any other tips about making swimming fun when you’re the only adult with all your children? I’d love to hear!
And if you have a little one, I highly recommend the Baby Spring Float Sun Canopy – they’ve made swimming for kids so much easier for our family!
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