11 May Swim With Mr. Blue
As a mom living in Florida one of my biggest fears is of drowning. I mean who can blame me? Drowning is one of the leading causes of unintentional injury-related deaths in our country. As soon as Charlie turned about 15-months-old, I began private swim lessons mostly for comfortability with the water. A lot of my friends did a program called ISR, but I was way too much of a scaredy-cat for it. In all honesty, I didn’t even want Charlie being dunked under the water at all.
However, when Charlie turned 2 , I began exploring the best options for an intensive program that would promote swim safety. My goal was to have Charlie be able to get to the edge of the pool and out in case she ever fell in. I was so excited when I was referred to Swim With Mr. Blue. It is a 5-Day intensive program whose sole mission is to promote swim safety. The owner believes in teaching the child to swim to the edge of the pool and “choo-choo” to safety in case they fall in.
I am not going to lie to you, the first 4 days of the program were rough. I had a serious love-hate relationship with it. Charlie would cry A LOT during each session, but each and every time Julie let her go, she would swim to the edge of the pool and “choo choo” to safety! While my family and I watched, we would simultaneously cover our eyes, in fear, and cheer each and every time Charlie got out to safety!
Something that I thought was crucial to this 5 Day Adventure was that my mom and I took Charlie in the pool during a time that was not a part of the program (after day 4). Initially Charlie did not want to go in because she thought it would be intensive practice again, but I didn’t take no for an answer. During this time we just played with Charlie, and by the end she did not want to come out. The reason I was so insistent in doing this was because I did not want Charlie to associate the pool with something negative, but rather something that was fun as well! I highly recommend doing this because it made Charlie want to go swimming the next day for Day 5 (aka the final day of our swim adventure).
On Day 5 Charlie was a COMPLETELY different person with Julie. She was so excited to go swimming, and she even kept asking to “be let go” in the pool! It was as if a light went off in her head that swimming is fun, but we have to learn how to do it properly. To say Steve and I were amazed on Day 5 is the understatement of the century. Day 5 has to be one of my favorite moments with Charlie ever! I could not be more proud. We literally had to drag her away from the pool today. Check out my instagram account @mamainmanolos, and under the highlight “Adventures” you’ll be able to catch some moments of Charlie during her 5 days of Swim With Mr. Blue.
Below is a Q & A with the founder of Swim With Mr. Blue:
What made you want to start a children’s swim company?
I taught a little boy to swim at a young age, and he was able to swim back to the wall on his own in a short period of time. This occurred after accidentally falling into his pool the same week we were teaching him. I realized early on that teaching young children to swim would help save their lives.
How did you become so passionate about swimming?
I almost drowned twice when I was younger, and then I became a safe swimmer. I know the importance of learning how to swim at a young age in south Florida.
In one sentence how would you describe your program?
Swim with Mr. Blue teaches children and adults to be safe and successful in the water.
Tell me a bit about the purpose of your book and dvd.
The Swim with Mr. book and DVD prepares the child at the heart level to feel connected to swimming even before they get into the pool.
How do you recommend parents continue to promote their children’s swim skills once the 5 days are up?
Swim with Mr. Blue offers group swim classes to help reinforce what they learned in the 5 day program. The classes go all the way up to swim team level.
Are there ever situations where the program is not a good fit for a child?
The program works for every child who has a willing heart to learn. Children should do the 5-day-program when they are strong enough to both kick and hold onto the wall. We recommend as early as 18-months, but we can teach younger if the child has been evaluated by one of our swim instructors.
How is your program different than other programs out there?
We are able to get the child to be able to swim back to the wall on their own without any assistance in a short period of time.
Do you only offer private lessons or group lessons as well?
We do offer private lessons, but we recommend group classes so the children can excel with other students in their class at their same swim levels.
How long have you been in business?
I have been teaching swim lessons for over 30 years, and Swim with Mr. Blue has been established since 2007-so 12 years as a company.
What does a child need to accomplish to “pass” the program? If they don’t pass on 5 days what’s happens?
Children need to be able to get back to the wall on their own. If the child is not kicking strong enough we recommend some parent and child classes to help strengthen their kicks.
What are 3 things you’d like parents to know about the importance of swim safety?
1-Every child could potentially have a swim accident-even in the presence of adults watching.
2. Swim lessons are 100 percent important and will save a life.
3. Pools need to have pool fences and proper boundaries up, as well as, parents and caretakers learning CPR.