Houston Swim Club
X Enroll Now! Swim Lessons Prices Locations Blog Our Story Contact Us! Join Our Team! Computer Howey
Enroll Now! Login to the Parent PortalLoginSearch

How Swim Lessons Can Help Children Overcome Stress and Anxiety

Stress and anxiety…

Two words nobody wants to associate with children, but according to the CDC, they are becoming more prevalent. A little over 10% of children have been diagnosed with stress or anxiety, and those numbers have been on the rise. This past year has only contributed to those increasing numbers. Research has shown that children feed off of their parents' emotions and I think we can all agree that COVID has put us all through a roller coaster of emotions.

"Anxiety is a normal human emotion that serves important functions, including protecting people and motivating them to solve problems," according to Wendy Silverman who holds a PhD and is the director of the Yale Medicine Child Study Center's Anxiety and Mood Disorders Program.

However, this is not something children will just outgrow, so it is our responsibility as parents to help them manage their feelings and emotions. If your children are anything like mine, they don't always know how to express how they feel and sometimes they just don't want to talk about it.

So, what can we do to help? Swimming, of course!


Sounds simple enough, right? Let's dive into some of the benefits swimming has to offer…

Aside from the obvious getting out of the house for a change of scenery, exercise releases endorphins and serotonin, which are our "feel-good" hormones. These alone are two great reasons to maintain swim lessons as a healthy activity for your children.

Let's dive a little deeper…

At Houston Swim Club Swim School, we have one of the most effective environments for protection against spreading diseases. Our constantly-tested chlorinated water inactivates the coronavirus (CDC), and passes through several layers of disinfection, including a UV sanitation system, which has been shown to also inactivate the virus by destroying the outer protein coating, and our air quality control systems naturally turn over the air well above the recommended rate with fresh, outdoor (not recycled) air. There are not many other sports, if any, that can offer a better virus killing environment. We hope this added layer of precaution helps bring peace of mind to both our parents and students about coming to swim lessons.

Next, I'd like you to think about when someone is upset. What is the first thing we almost always tell them to do?


Inhale. Exhale. Focus on your breathing. Well, we certainly do a lot of that in swimming. Breath control is the first building block we teach in our curriculum. It is a crucial first step in becoming a comfortable, confident swimmer. And it is also a simple method for coping with stress and anxiety. The rhythm of taking strokes and maintaining a breathing pattern can be meditative. Combine that with the fact that blue tends to be a soothing color and our bodies are made up of 70% water, so we are naturally drawn to it.

Another study done by the Griffith Institute for Education found that children who take swimming lessons at a young age develop cognitive milestones like oral expression, literacy, numbers, visual motor and social skills before their peers. Such maturity will no doubt help children process their feelings better especially if they notice other children their age may also be feeling the same way. Swimming can be a distraction from their stress and anxiety. There is so much going on in the pool from the start of just being in the pool. It is not the same as standing on solid ground. Then there is breath control, kicking, moving their arms, turning to get a breath and doing it all over again. There are also no electronics in the pool and lots of fun songs used throughout our lessons, which can also help put students in a better mood.

Lastly, submersion in water increases blood flow to the brain. This increases oxygen to the brain, which helps with memory, mood, concentration and cognitive function (Carter et al). All of these benefits can help our children overcome some of their stress and anxiety.

At the very least, participating in swim lessons gives my children something to be proud of and that in and of itself can be a win no matter how bad their day has been! Sometimes they may not know what they are feeling or why they are feeling it, but as parents, we can provide them with safe, positive activities that can indirectly help them cope with any stress or anxiety they may be feeling. We hope you'll choose swim lessons at HSC as one of those activities!

We love your kids.
We teach them lifesaving skills and so much more.

Learn more about what we are doing to keep our families, students, and staff safe.

icon-kaylaWritten by Kayla Stambaugh, Office Manager, Houston Swim Club Cypress and proud mom of 2!


Feb 9, 2021
"Parent Tips" 

Previous Article

Next Article

Back to Blog