November 20, 2023

Why are ISR Swim Lessons So Short?

Why are ISR Swim Lessons So Short?

When parents choose activities for their kids, there is much to consider. Distance from the home, the child’s level of interest, overall investment, and time to commit are all part of the decision-making process. When it comes to the time commitment, parents may be confused about how time is structured in ISR swim lessons. This amount of time is intentional and there are reasons why H2O Survival Swim School will be working with your child in shorter spurts.

Attention Span

It isn’t just an adage that kids have a short attention span, it is founded in fact. While we could work with our students longer, we have discovered that it is better to keep lessons under 15 minutes to capitalize on their full attention, rather than waste time after their thoughts begin to drift. An article featuring ISR lessons on MSN states, “[w]hen developing ISR, researchers found that learning efficiency plummets after 10 minutes, so lessons are kept short as children work towards small, achievable goals.” These small, achievable goals become self-reinforcing too, as student confidence is boosted with mastery of each step in the ISR process.


A 10-15 minute session would be ineffective if we had a class of 8-12 screeching toddlers who all wanted to splash and play. It may even feel like longer lessons are ineffective as it takes time to work to provide instruction and allow for practice, rotating through each enrolled student. By having one-on-one instruction, you are allowing for all of the instruction of a longer lesson to be condensed and focused on one student at a time. The actual work being put in is very comparable and better suited to student learning style, development, and individual needs.


ISR lessons would be ineffective if we only met with your student for 15 minutes and then waited to see them again a week later. Instead, we schedule lessons every day for a concentrated amount of time, to work towards the goals set forth by ISR. This consistency creates repetition and makes it easier for your child’s developing mind to master goals while retaining the skills learned in prior lessons. This routine of lessons over several weeks, paired with the actual predictable routine of our lessons themselves, helps your child predict what is happening next, creating a safe learning environment they can thrive in.

Monitoring Your Child

One of the components of instruction with ISR involves active monitoring that you may not even notice. Our instructors are trained to respond to your child’s physical changes in the water to ensure their body temperature is well-regulated and they aren’t taking in water or gulping too much air. Each of these factors can lead to physical harm. We try to minimize that in our one-on-one instruction, one of the benefits of not having larger classes. Additionally, children of any age do not learn as well when their bodies are uncomfortable or under duress, which means we need to keep our instruction short to maximize their potential.

ISR lessons are focused, unique, and individualized in meeting your child’s needs while providing the same safety-focused skills for every child we are entrusted with. If you want to learn more about what we do at H2O Survival Swim School or need to schedule a meeting for your child, contact us today.

Go to Top