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Many parents limit swimming to the warm summer months believing that their child will get sick if they swim during the winter. The fact is children are no more likely to catch a cold from swimming during winter than during summer. Children are more susceptible to colds and the flu during winter, it’s true, because school is in session and they are in close contact with each other. Also, the viruses that cause infections thrive during the dry cooler months. And those viruses are sneaky little ninjas. Of course you wouldn’t send your child to school if he is sick, but he’s contagious even before the first symptoms of illness appear. Kids, being kids and not particularly concerned about hygiene, spread these germs across everything they touch or breathe on. With their brand new immune systems, children don’t have the anti-bodies to fight off most of the viruses they run into. Most children come down with 6 to 10 viral infections a year! It’s not the water making kids sick – a properly chlorinated pool is probably one of the cleanest places a child can be.

So here are a few points to consider regarding winter swimming:

* Swimming in winter poses no threat to children with functioning immune systems. Our pool is indoors and the water is heated to 90 – 92 degrees. As long as you quickly and thoroughly dry your child and change him into warm clothes he’s no more at risk from catching a cold after swimming than he is after his bath.

* Regular exercise helps keep the body, including the immune system, strong. Studies conducted in Germany indicated that swimming children are actually healthier than their non-swimming friends. go ask alice (Take that evil virus ninjas!)

* Year round swimming ensures that children do not forget skills learned between summers. Plus, it allows new skills to be taught at the most advantageous developmental age.
If you want more information on colds and flu’s, check out the links below.

http://www.cdc.gov/flu/about/qa/disease.htm

http://www.childrenshospital.org/az/Site1719/mainpageS1719P0.html

http://coldflu.about.com/od/cold/f/coldandweather.htm