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What is the best age to learn to swim?

The Nationale Raad Zwemveiligheid (Dutch National Water Safety Council) believes the sooner a child learns to handle themselves in the water, the better. Most children who drown are under four years old. Swimming pools offer options for children from a very young age to move and recreate safely in and around water

The recommended age to start swimming lessons for Swimming Diploma A is four and a half to five years old. Some parents prefer to start swimming lessons earlier, when their child is three to four years old. The requirements for Swimming Diploma A are too difficult for a three-year-old child to pass. Even a four-year-old child can struggle to master the necessary skills. On top of that, children are also starting primary school at four years old. That is a big change for a child and takes a lot of energy. If you wait six months, your child will have less trouble completing swimming lessons.


Survival swimming/parent and child swimming are recommended for parents who want their child to learn to swim before they turn four. This allows the child to gain experience in the water, so they already feel comfortable in the water when swimming lessons begin.