London Bridge

Fraser Anderson
Capital Wave Coach, PLAY! Water Polo Program

I don’t think I am alone when I say that “London Bridge” is a song that I never want to hear again.

It was a staple song at my daughter’s swim lessons for a couple of years when she was learning how to swim. And I am sure it’s still being sung to this day. Fall already! Pack the bridge up and move it to Arizona. I’m done.

But that was not all that was uncomfortable about my child’s swim lessons. What really got to me was the amount of time my child spent on the deck with only her legs dangling in the water as the lesson was taking place. For a 45 minute lesson, she spent at least 20 minutes out of the water. Not only did she look cold, she looked bored. Shouldn’t actually being in the water be a priority?

This is not all the fault of the instructors. This is the material that they’ve got to work with; nursery rhymes, floaties and children shivering on the side of the pool wishing they were anywhere but there.

There is, of course, a better way. What happens at Brewer Pool every Saturday at the Capital Wave Splash Polo program is that way.

The Splash Polo program is the new water sport for kids. Splash Polo is a COED program created by Capital Wave targeted towards kids between the ages of 6-9.

When you throw a ball into the mix and some strange looking caps and a couple of goals and all of a sudden you’ve got a game going on! 

The kids are learning to swim through play. They’re chasing down the ball, using their leg and arm power to throw and catch and doing everything in their power to keep their head above the water so as not to miss any of the non-stop action – there’s no waiting on the side of this pool!

Waneek Horn Miller, Olympian and former co-captain of the Canadian Women’s Water Polo team, explains the impact of the Splash Polo program for her son, “Everyone asks me where my son took his swim lessons as he’s a powerful swimmer at such a young age. I tell them the only way my son got this good this fast was his absolute desire to be first down that pool to get to that water polo ball. He wanted to score goals! The Splash Polo program gave him his swimming abilities and he enjoyed every minute of it. There was never an issue getting him to go to the games, that can’t always be said for swimming lessons.”

And this all takes place under the watchful eyes of the Capital Wave Splash Polo instructors and lifeguards. Safety is a priority and the Splash Polo program works on the principle of one instructor for every 3 children in the pool.

“Keeping all the kids safe is my first priority. The fact that we have a ball in the water and a game to play means we’re having fun and learning how to swim at the same time. Our instructors also take the time to help the kids on certain aspects of their stroke when there’s a break in the action,” says head instructor Veronica.

Interested? For more information about the Splash Polo program be sure to consult the Capital Wave website and if you have any questions, you can send an email to Veronica – she’ll be happy to hear from you. Capital Wave is the only club in Ottawa offering the Splash Polo program. New swimmers and players are welcome throughout the year.