Building a Balanced Meal Plan for Kids Learning to Swim


Growing kids are always hungry; add swimming to the equation, and you better make sure your fridge and pantry are well stocked! Creating a balanced meal plan for kids learning to swim is crucial to ensure they have the energy and nutrients needed for physical activity, growth, and overall well-being.

Carbs are vital for energy

Carbohydrates are vital for kids in swimming due to their high energy needs and growth demands. Serving as the primary energy source, carbs support sustained endurance during swim sessions, regulate blood sugar for concentration, and aid in post-exercise recovery. Essential for brain function, they contribute to coordination and cognitive skills crucial for swimming. Carbohydrate-rich foods, including fruits and whole grains, also promote hydration. Opting for complex carbohydrates from diverse sources ensures a well-rounded nutrient intake, supporting overall health.

The importance of protein

Protein is crucial for kids in swimming due to its role in muscle development, energy support, and post-exercise recovery. It helps repair and maintain muscle tissue during physically demanding swimming sessions, contributes to overall immune system health, and aids in nutrient absorption, especially calcium for bone development. Additionally, protein-rich foods promote a sense of fullness, supporting healthy weight management in children. A balanced diet with sources like lean meats, fish, eggs, and plant-based options ensures optimal growth and performance.

Here’s an example…


Start your child’s day with a nutritious breakfast. Scramble up some eggs for a protein-packed boost, providing essential nutrients for growing muscles. Pair the eggs with whole grain toast to add complex carbohydrates, sustaining energy throughout the morning. Include a side of sliced avocado for healthy fats and additional vitamins. This balanced breakfast not only fuels your child with lasting energy but also supports overall health and well-being.


How about a grilled chicken or turkey sandwich on whole grain bread? It’s loaded with lean protein for those muscles and fibre to keep your child feeling full. Pair it with veggie sticks and hummus for a nutrient-packed crunch. And of course, stay hydrated with low-fat milk or water.

Afternoon snack (pre-swim):

Before your child hits the pool, let them recharge with Greek yogurt and sliced strawberries or grapes for extra vitamins and natural sugars.

Post-swim snack:

There’s no hunger quite like post-swimming hunger! After swimming, a slice of toast topped with peanut butter, banana and honey will keep your child satisfied until dinner.


Time for a protein-rich dinner! Choose grilled fish or tofu for omega-3s or opt for grilled lean chicken, beef or lamb. Scoop up some quinoa or brown rice for steady energy, and don’t forget those steamed veggies for a nutrient boost.


Blend a medley of fresh summer fruits like berries, mango, and kiwi, and freeze the mix into homemade popsicles. Enhance the sweetness with a splash of 100% fruit juice. These refreshing popsicles are a perfect summer treat, offering a hydrating and nutritious option for kids after their swimming activities.

Consider seeking expert advice

A healthy, balanced diet with plenty of variety is the best option for active children. If your child is serious about their swimming and is training hard, it’s advisable to seek professional advice from a paediatrician or dietitian to ensure they are receiving all the nutrients they need. Remember, learning to swim can be physically taxing – so ensuring your child is fuelled by a balance meal plan is essential!

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