Parents are being urged to get their kids swimming after international research revealed more under 5s know how to play a computer game than swim.
The ASA, the English national governing body for all things swimming, is worried about the trend revealed in the AVG's Digital Diaries global research especially as it includes children from the UK.
The research asked mothers, all with children aged two to five years, to rank a list of computer and traditional life skills according to how early their children had mastered them.
It showed nearly six in ten children (58%) know how to play a computer game but only two in ten know how to swim (20%).
Jon Glenn, the ASA’s Head of Learn to Swim, said: “This new research is worrying because we urge parents to get their children in the water from six months old. Two to five years is the ideal age for children to learn to be confident and have fun in the pool.
“Drowning is also the third most common cause of accidental death for children in the UK and although most children learn to swim at primary school, this could be too late.
“I appreciate parents have lots of demands on their time but I’d urge them to put learning to swim, or just going to the pool to have fun, high on their priority list for their under fives. Swimming is also a lot healthier for their youngster than sitting in front of a computer.”