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Journal of Human Kinetics

The Journal of Academy of Physical Education in Katowice

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Deep and Shallow Water Effects on Developing Preschoolers' Aquatic Skills

Aldo Costa
  • Sports Science Department, University of Beira Interior, Covilhã, Portugal
  • Research Centre in Sports, Health and Human Development (CIDESD), Vila Real, Portugal
/ Daniel Marinho
  • Sports Science Department, University of Beira Interior, Covilhã, Portugal
  • Research Centre in Sports, Health and Human Development (CIDESD), Vila Real, Portugal
/ Helena Rocha
  • Sports Science Department, University of Beira Interior, Covilhã, Portugal
/ António Silva
  • University of Trás-os-Montes and Alto Douro/CIDESD, Vila Real, Portugal
  • Research Centre in Sports, Health and Human Development (CIDESD), Vila Real, Portugal
/ Tiago Barbosa
  • Polytechnic Institute of Bragança/CIDESD, Bragança, Portugal
  • Research Centre in Sports, Health and Human Development (CIDESD), Vila Real, Portugal
/ Sandra Ferreira
  • Department of Mathematics, University of Beira Interior, Covilhã, Portugal
  • Mathematics Center, University of Beira Interior, Covilhã, Portugal
/ Marta Martins
  • Sports Science School of Rio Maior, Rio Maior, Portugal
  • Research Centre in Sports, Health and Human Development (CIDESD), Vila Real, Portugal
Published Online: 2012-05-30 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.2478/v10078-012-0037-1

Deep and Shallow Water Effects on Developing Preschoolers' Aquatic Skills

The aim of the study was to assess deep and shallow water teaching methods in swimming lessons for preschool children and identify variations in the basic aquatic skills acquired. The study sample included 32 swimming instructors (16 from deep water programs and 16 from shallow water programs) and 98 preschool children (50 from deep water swimming pool and 48 from shallow water swimming pool). The children were also studied regarding their previous experience in swimming (6, 12 and 18 months or practice). Chi-Square test and Fisher's exact test were used to compare the teaching methodology. A discriminant analysis was conducted with Λ wilk's method to predict under what conditions students are better or worse (aquatic competence).

Results suggest that regardless of the non-significant variations found in teaching methods, the water depth can affect aquatic skill acquisition - shallow water lessons seem to impose greater water competence particularly after 6 months of practice. The discriminant function revealed a significant association between groups and all predictors for 6 months of swimming practice (p<0.001). Body position in gliding and leg displacements were the main predictors. For 12 and 18 months of practice, the discriminant function do not revealed any significant association between groups. As a conclusion, it seems that the teaching methodology of aquatic readiness based on deep and shallow water programs for preschoolers is not significantly different. However, shallow water lessons could be preferable for the development of basic aquatic skills.

Keywords: aquatic skills; shallow water; deep water; teaching methods; preschoolers

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About the article


Published Online: 2012-05-30

Published in Print: 2012-05-01


Citation Information: Journal of Human Kinetics, ISSN (Online) 1899-7562, ISSN (Print) 1640-5544, DOI: https://doi.org/10.2478/v10078-012-0037-1. Export Citation

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