Submerging with Parent
Why: To educate parents about the dive reflex and to practice Breath Control. Babies can learn to swim underwater for short distances, partly because of a reaction know as ‘the diving reflex’. This reflex causes babies to hold their breath and open their eyes when submerged. The response weakens as a baby gets older, but even adults have it to some degree. We cannot rely solely on reflexes to be sure to cue the child and keep the movements gently under and gently up.
How: Use a doll / toy to demonstrate the proper method for submerging. Get creative with ways to encourage parents to submerge such as under an extended noodle, under the yellow mat, etc.
FOR MORE ADVANCED STUDENTS; Aim for a deeper submersion. Water creates pressure against the body and this feeling can generate improved breath control.