Rinse & Repeat: How Repetition Helps New Swimmers Learn

Small children love repetition – as you know if you’ve ever read the same book, played the same game or sung the same song on loop with your kids. Repetition helps children practice a skill or develop a knowledge area. It establishes a routine, giving them an orderly and predictable environment to learn and grow.

While adults become bored or restless with too much repetition (the reason you’ve tried skip pages in a well-worn book or introduce a new game into the mix), kids feel safe and comfortable when they know what to expect. It puts them at ease and boosts their self-assurance.

Repetition is a core part of learning how to swim. In Tom Dolan Swim School lessons, students repeat new skills over and over through exercises, games and other activities. We include enough variety and energy to keep lessons entertaining, but we intentionally structure our curriculum around repetition. Here are three ways repetition helps new swimmers learn over time.

  1. Confidence

Every small step forward is important for children learning how to swim. Doing a full submersion or a back float for the very first time might be daunting. But by the second, the tenth or the hundredth time? Not at all! Students become more confident and enthusiastic in their abilities with every repetition.

  1. Muscle Memory

Swimming is an essential life skill, and our goal is to make it second nature to our students. We want them to practice water safety habits and swimming fundamentals so often that they are automatic. In our lessons, we focus on the basics first. We teach students proper technique through swimming short distances and gradually adding new skills. With this strong foundation, they build muscle memory, making swimming a natural and enjoyable activity.

  1. Consistency

Swim lessons must be consistent and ongoing to be effective. A single week of swim camp will give kids a good starting point for learning, but the skills won’t stick without regular year-round lessons. Just like playing a musical instrument or a team sport, swimming requires steady, patient practice and repetition. And the good news is, students thrive in a regular routine of swim lessons. They get to know their instructors and classmates, and they are encouraged by the visible progress they’re making. They become capable and confident lifelong swimmers.

Learn more about Tom Dolan Swim School’s approach to swim instruction.