Before this summer, our family wasn’t around deep water often, but living near Lake Travis means lots of pool and lake days, so teaching our kids how to swim was imperative.
We had looked into a few different popular swim schools in the area, but Spicewood ISR kept popping up in our search, so we reached out to the owner, Alura, to find out more info.
Alura Buckner owns and operates Spicewood ISR as the only certified ISR swim instructor in Spicewood, TX. She and her husband Josh have been married for 5 years. Together they have two children- JJ, age 3 and Ari, age 5 months as well as 2 dogs- Milie & Bogey!
Alura grew up swimming competitively and has always had a love for the water. When her family built their home in Spicewood, they knew how important the layers of protection were. They put in a pool fence as well as double locks on all exterior doors, but they knew they needed their son to be able to save himself if he ever found the water alone. They tried traditional swim lessons initially, but weren’t seeing any progress other than JJ being able to blow bubbles and splash around.
Our family recently completed lessons for our three children with Alura, and we have nothing but positive things to say. Our two oldest children went from fearing water, including showers, to begging to go back to swim lessons at the end of each day. To our family, this meant the world knowing someone was willing to take the time to be patient and understanding with our kids about their fears.
Drowning is the leading cause of accidental death in children ages 1-4. Drownings do not discriminate. They can happen to any family, in any body of water. While we all know we are good, attentive parents, we also know that an aquatic emergency could arise at any time. With that, Alura enrolled JJ in ISR lessons and drove 40 minutes each way, 5 days per week for 6 weeks. Their son learned how to swim and float, and more importantly, he became competent and confident in the water.
He became an aquatic problem solver.
Alura quickly realized the Spicewood community NEEDED these lessons available to their children. She applied to become an instructor and was chosen to go through the rigorous ISR Instructor certification.
Through her training, Alura was trained and tested in the areas of child psychology, physiology, anatomy, behavioral science, and early childhood development principles to provide the safest lessons possible for children. We are so grateful to have someone in the community who loves what she does while providing life saving swim lessons!
ISR differs from most other swim programs because it teaches children how to turn from a face down position to a float. This is a critical skill that children need to have in the water. Lessons can begin at 6 months old, if the child is sitting independently. All children initially learn breath control in the water, then, the skills they are taught is dependent on age.
Children 6-24 months will learn the correct floating posture as well as the skills to rollback to a float and maintain this position until help arrives. Older children learn those same skills as well as the correct horizontal swimming posture with their face in the water. They learn a swim-float-swim sequence, so they are also taught to flip back over and continue swimming to safety after resting in their float. ISR provides the safest swim lessons available to children. It provides littles with the confidence and competence to save themselves should an aquatic emergency arise.
One of the main aquatic problem solving methods Spicewood ISR uses that differs from regular swim schools, in addition to the swim-float-swim method, is practicing their floats with full summer and winter attire at the end of their season.
Our children each practiced their technique with summer clothing and shoes on as well as winter attire, including coats. As a mom of three littles, this gave me peace of mind knowing that if a water emergency ever arose and I am not around, they have the ability to stay up right, call for help, and swim to safety.
When asked what advice Alura had for new parents enrolling their children in swim lessons for the first time, she shared the following with us:
“My advice for moms is to try and look past the fact that your child will probably cry during lessons. A crying baby is a breathing baby and they are most likely crying because it’s hard work! Typically, the crying subsides by week 2 of lessons but every child is different. Most people don’t realize that drowning is the leading cause of unintentional death for children 5 years and under. Placing your child in a puddle jumper greatly contributes to this statistic. It teaches children that they can be in the water in a vertical (drowning position). Then if they reach the water without their flotation device on, the outcome is often fatal. ISR lessons were invaluable to my family. I hope to bring more education and awareness to the community, so every child has the ability to receive lifesaving aquatic swim lessons.”
If you’re thinking about enrolling your kids in ISR lessons, reach out to Spicewood ISR!
There are a couple of spots left in the Spicewood session starting August 23rd, and a few spots available for the fall session starting October 11th, near the Arboretum.