Recent research in the Journal of Motor Learning and Development reports that the optimum age for children to begin formal swimming lessons is between five and seven years of age.
A study was conducted of 272 children who started formal swimming lessons between the ages of three and eight.
The children were compared on number of lessons, number of months required to reach three levels of swimming proficiency and the ages at which those levels were reached.
The younger the age at which children started lessons, the younger they were when they attained Level 1 proficiency.
However, the younger the swimmer, the longer it took to reach proficiency at Levels 2 and 3.
The study hopes to provide a clearer understanding of the relationship of age and motor skill development, especially in terms of expectations of parents and coaches of young children.