10 Reasons Why Swimmers Are The Best Kids

by SwimSwam 27

July 11th, 2017 Lifestyle

Courtesy of Elizabeth Wickham

Swimming teaches our children so many life lessons on a daily basis. They learn time management, perseverance, discipline, goal setting, plus develop character and grit. Through the process of a tough schedule with heavy physical demands, our children expand their accomplishments and possibilities. Someday their swim careers will be over, but they’ll take wonderful memories of best times, fun with teammates, plus all the life skills swimming has given them.

Here are ten reasons why swimmers are the best kids:


They are too tired to get into trouble. They’d rather be tucked into bed watching Netflix than going out late at night.


They have unbelievable appetites and are open to trying new things. In fact, they’ll eat pretty much whatever you put in front of them.


They are clean. They get a daily rinse in chlorine as well as take long showers.


They are good students. They know they won’t have time—or will be too tired to do homework later—so they work ahead and try to get homework done before practice.


They’re comfortable around adults. They communicate with coaches, other swim parents and officials regularly.


They’ve experienced failure and know it’s not the end of the world. They understand that there’s another chance and with hard work, they can do better.


They’re strong and fit. Working out is something their bodies crave and they’re in better shape than most of their classmates.


They are there for their teammates and friends. If someone is upset or has a problem, they’re more than willing to listen and help out. They also have fun with their friends and can make hours at a meet pass by with silliness and laughter.


They are confident. They put in long hours and hard work to reach their goals. With each improvement along the way, they build self-confidence.


We know their swim friends and their families—and that they are good kids we want our children to hang out with.

Why do you think swimmers are the best kids?

Elizabeth Wickham volunteered for 14 years on her kids’ club team as board member, fundraiser, newsletter editor and “Mrs. meet manager.” She’s a writer with a bachelor of arts degree in editorial journalism from the University of Washington with a long career in public relations, marketing and advertising. Her stories have appeared in newspapers and magazines including the Los Angeles Times, Orange County Parenting and Ladybug. You can read more parenting tips on her blog.

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3 years ago

I think all kids have something to offer regardless of the sport they choose. Kids grow up in all kinds of circumstances. Swimming is a sport of privilege. While this list may make swim parents feel good (like they are doing something right), swimming does not “make the best kids”. We met some great kids in swimming, and also some not so great kids. Let’s stop competing around our kids. Recognize that all that time in the pool is also time sacrificed doing other valuable things worth doing, and there is also a price for that, one that comes later. It’s a choice, not the only choice and certainly not the right choice for everyone.

Reply to  MB\\
3 years ago

Actually, Shirley Bashashoff, came from a lower middle class family where her father worked in a factory job. Also, she was sexually abused by him and she wrote this in her book making waves. This is far from a privilege background.

Capturing Cairns
Reply to  cynthiacurran
3 years ago

As did Lesiel Jones one of the best breastrokers of all time. Her mum was a single parent with little money. Leisiel was the bread winner of the family from the age of 14.

Reply to  MB\\
3 years ago

Kids who wake before 5am to participate in swim practices before school and stay after school for additional practices, that’s commendable. It takes balance and discipline, both physically and mentally to be a swimmer. And hardly a sport of privilege, we don’t belong to a swim club, my kids swam through their school (public school) program. If anything its one of the most affordable sports around and unlike alot of team sports, swimming is excellent for socialization and conditioning for special needs children also.

Reply to  bmarqd
3 years ago

Pretty much every sport requires two practices a day by high school level. And the most disciplined athletes have to be wrestlers, who have to make weight and aren’t able to consume thousands of calories a day like swimmers.

Reply to  MB\\
3 years ago

Sport of privilege, that’s rich!! Wheres all that privilege when I have deal with the bank, power company, doctor, super market, gas station, etc. Today’s costs for parents of all athletes are outrageous. There’s one thing I’d like to add to this article, and it may shed some light on MB. Most swim kids and all athletes are children of parents that make incredible sacrifices, their children grow up learning this, a valuable lesson, for their own families some day. As for the price they pay for all that time taking away from other valuable things, that’s another responsibility of the parent. Yes there’s more to life that sport; family, travel, relationships, etc. Speaking for swim parents everywhere, after spending… Read more »

Capturing Cairns
Reply to  MB\\
3 years ago

MB-Elizabeth has simply written a general light hearted article about swimming children. This is clear if you listen to the ‘Tone’ in which it has been written. Obviously it is a generalisation, it was intended that way. No need to sink the boots in, out of fear your children are not of the same calibre…you should not read it this way.

Your claims it is a sport of privilege are incorrect and extremely short sighted. I’m not sure of your experience, but I am saddened you are of this opinion. We have many, many swimming clubs here in Australia who support under privileged families and keep these kids active for very little money. All they need is a pair… Read more »

Heather Malone
Reply to  MB\\
3 years ago

The article isn’t titled “Why Kids Who Swim are Better Than Non-Swimming Kids.” This simply celebrates swimmers. It’s okay to celebrate one type of athlete.

Reply to  MB\\
3 years ago

For you to think that this is a sport of privilege only makes me think that you must have been denied as a child… sad

3 years ago

The good student is somewhat exaggerated. Some swimmers like Michael Phelps had ADHD which effects your performance in the classroom. I remember Nelson Diebel was dyslexic and overcame that. He won a gold medal in 1992.

Reply to  cynthiacurran
3 years ago

I agree. Swimming like many sports teach good work effort, which can help with study habits but not all kids in the pool are good students.

Reply to  cynthiacurran
3 years ago

I agree that not all swimmers are great students, but most of them are, the swimmers you mentioned only struggled because of there disabilites.

Colleen Kemp
3 years ago

It’s a survival sport. These kids will learn to save themselves from drowning and maybe someone else too. That’s why my kids swim.