What Should You Pack When You Go Swimming With Children?

The children have had swimming lessons every week for as long as I can remember. I spend so long in the pool every Sunday my best friend nicknames me ‘the mermaid’ when she struggles to get hold of me during weekends.

What Should You Pack When You Go Swimming With Children - Swimming lessons whilst heavily pregnant

Beanie and I, when I was weeks away from giving birth to Jumpy.

Swimming lessons have not always been a walk in the park. Far from that. Every single one of my children has had months of regression at one point not another, sometimes nearly a year of whining every single time we were heading for the swimming pool. I am not keen on any form of exercise myself, but I kept going despite the moaning, the lack of progress, the cold pool and financial costs involved. Swimming is not just a way to keep active; it is a life skill.

Their being at ease in water and knowing that they can all take themselves safely to the side of the pool is reassuring. I am not scared when they jump in the pool. I have been watching them ‘paddle,’ then do the crawl and eventually swim with much better technique than I will ever master. That alone is worth all the cold afternoons in chlorinated water, poo explosions and screaming sessions (theirs, not mine, just in case you were wondering).

What Should You Pack When You Go Swimming With Children - Back Crawl - Crevette

The regularity of these lessons means I keep pretty organised when it comes to what we take with us every week and I have recently made a video about essentials we keep in the bag. I wash everything as soon as we come back from the lessons and pack the bag again, systematically refilling everything that needs to be, so the bag is always ready for our next session.

What Should You Pack When You Go Swimming With Children - Swimmer of the week

One thing we always remember to pop in our swim bag is a pack of HUGGIES® Little Swimmers®. They are an essential in any change bag, are expertly designed so they won’t leak or expand in the water. The easy open sides makes my little one’s change time hassle free so I have more time to have spontaneous fun. Visit www.littleswimmers.co.uk for more information, top tips and advice.

What Should You Pack When You Go Swimming With Children - Little Swimmers

Without further ado, here is our swimming bag as well as a few tips and tricks:

Here is just a quick summary of what we have in our swimming bag:

  • Swimming costumes
  • Towels
  • HUGGIES® Little Swimmers®  nappies
  • Wetsuits
  • Goggles (+ a spare pair – they sometimes snap)
  • A bottle of water
  • Bag full of energy-boosting snacks
  • Flip flops / Crocs
  • Toys to grab under water
  • 2-in-1 shampoo shower gel, conditioner
  • Barrier cream (to protect eczema-prone skin before going in water)
  • Moisturiser (we all use Aveeno for body/face when we come out)
  • Sunscreen (if going to an outdoor swimming pool)
  • Hair bands
  • hairbrush
  • A spare change of clothes for little ones, clean underwear, socks for all
  • Nappies, wipes
  • Large waterproof shopping bag for all wet gear, towels etc.

Is there anything else you pack in your swimming bag?

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If you pick up a pack of Huggies® Little Swimmers® from Ocado, you could be in with a chance of winning tickets to see Finding Dory on the big screen.


We are working with HUGGIES® Little Swimmers® this year and I have received payment for this post, but all opinions and photos are my own. You can get HUGGIES® Little Swimmers® from the baby aisle and click here for more information, tips and advice.   

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  1. Hello Beautiful Bear
    25/05/2016 / 11:16 pm

    We are currently going through a period of regression with Lily when it comes to swimming so I’m glad to see that it’s so common. We’re pushing through it and she’s started to become much happier again. Like you said, it’s so important and the water safety skills our children learn though classes are vital.
    X X

    • 26/05/2016 / 1:12 pm

      We’ve had regression with the four of them, and it sometimes happens when you expect it the least… “It’s just a phase” is my mantra!

  2. Laura Hartley (@WhatsHotBlog)
    26/05/2016 / 8:29 am

    These are some great tips. It’s one of those things where you always forget something and then there’s nowhere to pick up extra supplies which is really irritating! I always used to forget hair ties for my lessons!

    • 26/05/2016 / 1:13 pm

      I forgot to bring a hair band for myself once. Luckily, the lifeguard there had a spare one!

  3. BeautyAndThePrince (@Lisasbeauties)
    26/05/2016 / 10:26 am

    having 8 little ones meant we werent able to take ours swimming due to the regulations of one per child in the pool but theyve all grown over the age of 5 now so this year we have plenty swimming to do and look forward to going on holiday

    • 26/05/2016 / 1:15 pm

      I bet getting the 8 of them swimming is a logistical operation best kept for summer holidays!

  4. Sally Akins (@SallyAkins)
    26/05/2016 / 10:33 am

    I was going to suggest snacks until I saw you’d included them! I always found that the boys (and I!) were starving after a swim, and couldn’t wait til they had got dried to have a snack

    • 26/05/2016 / 1:14 pm

      Oh so true. Forgetting snacks would be the ultimate sin!

  5. WhatLauraLoves
    26/05/2016 / 3:36 pm

    Such a helpful post for parents- I didnt imagine you would have to pack THAT much! xxx

  6. Jessica Ayun
    26/05/2016 / 10:37 pm

    Quite a lot to pack! Haha. But mummies have their way to make it for their babies. 🙂

    • 27/05/2016 / 7:55 am

      I know, it really sounds like a crazy amount of stuff to pack, but it’s so reassuring when you’ve got it all covered!

  7. 27/05/2016 / 8:05 am

    Top tips Mel. All my kids have had and the youngest still has swimming lessons. Absolutely agree it is an important life skill. Hubby takes the kids swimming most weekends and they all love it. We always used Huggies Little Swimmers when the kids were babies, one if the most essential items.

  8. rachphillips
    27/05/2016 / 9:06 am

    such great tips, i used to LOVE going swimming when i was a kid, and i still do as an adult <3

  9. Emily Underworld
    28/05/2016 / 11:22 pm

    This blog post has made me want to go swimming now, I haven’t been in ages! I love your photos.
    – Emily

  10. Pat the Mum
    30/05/2016 / 1:28 pm

    Great list of water baby essentials. We’ve not taken our new addition to the pool yet, but with summer (gradually) arriving, it can’t be long now…

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