Hello! I am looking for some honest input about your experiences with Swimming and Swimming lessons for individuals with ASD. I am potentially looking to open a Swim School specifically for children with Autism. I have an ABA/VB background working 1-2-1 within home and school settings as a therapist for a number of years. Having learnt to swim myself as an adult, I am now a keen swimmer both within the pool and in open-water environments, competing regularly in races for fun! I understand personally and professionally how water can have a calming and soothing effect on mood. I have had experience with helping children overcome their fears of water from not being able to sit near a pool, to building their confidence up enough that they were able to enter the pool and even go on water slides. This was done by breaking down the activity into small accomplishable steps. I am very aware that children with ASD, if they have not been exposed to water environments, will need stimulus-stimulus pairing to build MO with the new environment and that effective reinforcement is fundamental for strengthening and maintaining new appropriate behaviours and skills.
I am looking for your input for vital information to help build my school, if you don’t mind. Could you possibly give me your honest views for the following questions:
- What, if any, experience do you have with swimming lessons for your child?
- How did you find that experience? Was it easy to find teachers/schools that could support the needs of your child??
- Did you encounter any problems with your experiences? If so, can you share those problems?
- How much would you be willing to pay for 1-2-1 lessons with a certified swimming teacher with previous ABA experience in home and school settings?
Your help is truly appreciated!