Teaching a child living with CP to swim — Scope | Disability forum

Teaching a child living with CP to swim

Sophiaspanton Member Posts: 1 Listener
edited May 2019 in Cerebral palsy

I am a swim teacher and my latest addition the group has been a boy with Celebral Palsy, he is three years old and cannot stand or walk without support. I have never taught anyone with celebral palsy before so am in completely new territory. He has been in the pool with me twice now and on both occasions just floated and every time I would ask him to try, he barely moved, we load him with floats and armbands and woggles and there's still always an adult holding him in the water, he's not super chatty and im not sure which parts of his behavior are linked to his condition and which parts are just him being a normal three year old. I was hoping to get some more insight on his condition and maybe some direction about how to go about teaching him. I am having a chat with his mum on Friday this week, so if you think anything I should say or ask or anything that could be helpful to get from her please let me know.



  • thespiceman
    thespiceman Member Posts: 6,390 Disability Gamechanger

    Hello @Sophiaspanton.  Pleased to meet you. Welcome.

    Thank you for joining and sharing.

    I am one of the team of community champions.  We guide advise and help new members who join.

    We have a dedicated member of our team who can advise you on CP.

    @Richard_Scope.  Who hopefully be in touch and help.

    Please take care.


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  • Richard_Scope
    Richard_Scope Posts: 2,943

    Scope community team

    Hi @Sophiaspanton
    Thanks for your post and it's great to meet you.
    Swimming is a fantastic way for children and adults that live with CP to get low resistance exercise. I will include an Introduction to Cerebral Palsy here. This should help you get an idea of how the impairment can affect individuals. I would also ask your pupil's mum how CP affects her son's movement. Are there some movements that are more difficult or uncomfortable than others? 
    I will include some information about Teaching Swimming to Children with Disabilities hopefully, this will provide you with some tips.
    As you get more familiar with each other the lessons will become more enjoyable. 3 year olds are not the easiest to teach!
    If you need further support please contact me :)
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  • Adrian_Scope
    Adrian_Scope Posts: 8,167

    Scope community team

    Hello @Sophiaspanton and welcome to the community!
    Just wanted to say how great it is you've reached out to try and educate yourself further so you can offer more support to your student.

    I hope the information posted by @Richard_Scope is useful, but I'm sure he won't mind if you have any other questions! :)
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