I had some general information about baby swimming from friends in Athens and various magazines. When my little boy was four months old, I started eagerly looking for swimming programmes that would be suitable for his first contact with the water. Unfortunately, I realized that Thessaloniki was not as progressed as Athens. There were only two baby swimming programmes, but one was too far away and the other one, to which I ended up as I didn’t have any other option, classes were taking place in the premises of a very big local sport team.
Fortunately, however, on a sunny day in September 2011, a smiling girl offered me a flyer asking me if I had heard about baby swimming. She informed me about Ichtheis, a new programme with a vision, the facilities of which were in a central hotel of the city. She told me that I could visit their premises and get to know them better. Being really curious, I went to visit them immediately, as it was in the very center of the Thessaloniki, in Egnatia Palace Hotel!
My surprise was really big! The smiling members of Ichtheis made me feel very happy and welcomed. The atmosphere in the pool area was very calming, as the lessons were accompanied by relaxing music that soothes the children. Courses are always conducted in small groups of 4, something very important both for the children and the parents who participate in it. There is always a changing table and a locker available, while toilets, showers and dressing rooms are extremely clean. As for the forgetful mothers, there are always caps, flip flops and all the essentials for the hygiene of the baby. Our coach, Nicolas, is very gifted and our little ones adore him. Most importantly, he is very qualified and he always has new ideas, zest and zeal for his work!
As for the benefits of baby swimming, I don’t know where to start! The fact that it has increased the mobility of our son is the least I can say! It has also improved the quality of his sleep and boosted his immune system, so we now see our beloved pediatrician less often. For all these reasons, I decided without hesitation to also send my 5-month old daughter to Ichtheis and share this experience with you!
Giorgos & Eleni