Should my child swim during winter? That is the question many parents face as the colder months approach, when fevers and runny noses reign. Sipping hot chocolate by a warm fire may be the first winter activity that comes to mind, but swimming in Asphalt Green’s indoor pool is just as viable of an option.
You may have heard that swimming during the winter is unhealthy, but that's a myth. Swimming is a year-round sport. Here's why your child should make a splash:
Swim lessons can actually improve your child’s ability to fight infection.
This one may come as a surprise: your child will not get sick from being cold and wet after swim lessons. Colds are caused by viruses; the temperature in or outside of the pool is not related to your child’s risk of being exposed to germs. While wet hair might feel a little chilly on the walk to the bus, it’s nothing to worry about, especially if you pack a beanie and a warm coat.
The exercise your child gets from swimming may boost his or her immune system, making it more prepared to ward off those bacterial and viral infections. Here's what happens when you exercise:
- Physical activity may help flush bacteria out of the lungs and airways. This may reduce your chance of getting a cold, flu, or other illness.
- Swimming for exercise causes changes in antibodies and white blood cells. White blood cells are the body’s immune system cells that fight disease. Exercise encourages antibodies to circulate more rapidly, enabling your immune system to detect illnesses earlier than it might have before.
- Exercise slows down the release of stress hormones. Some stress increases the chance of illness. Lower stress hormones may protect against illness.
Swim lessons help fight the winter blues.
Below-freezing temperatures don’t exactly make for a fun recess or playtime, and your child is probably spending more time on the couch. If you’ve noticed a change in your child’s mood, it might be attributed to seasonal affective disorder.
While this condition has been commonly known to affect adults, the National Institute of Mental Health revealed that up to 5.5 percent of children ages 9 to 19 may have seasonal affective disorder. Swim lessons can increase the amount of serotonin in your child’s brain, improving mood and combating seasonal blues.
Ready to make a splash? Sign up for swim lessons this winter today.