Summer is fast approaching and you know what that means: swimming season! It’s time to start assembling flip flops, sunglasses and, for parents of growing children, new swimsuits.
Finding comfortable and stylish swimwear isn’t always easy, and parents of children with disabilities have an additional hurdle: finding stylish swimwear. and functional for children who need extra help. As a parent of a child with cerebral palsy, I scoured the internet for suitable swimsuits. I’ve read what each site offers in terms of variety and convenience and put together a summary of what’s available.
Here is what I found:
1. Adaptive Target Cat and Jack
Target offers a wide variety of adaptive clothing with their Cat and Jack line as well as a selection of swimwear. For girls, they wear both tankinis and one-piece suits. Tankini tops have hidden slots (under a layer of ruffles) for abdominal access that makes it easier to support girls using a feeding tube or insulin pump. Stockings are sold separately. The one-piece suits have a rear velcro closure, a pocket for abdominal access, as well as snaps at the bottom of the suit for easy access to the bathroom. They are available in sizes ranging from toddler to girls up to XL (or girls 14-16).
Options for boys include swimsuit with a drawstring to keep a snug and comfortable fit. They also make rash guards with a hood and full length zipper so you don’t have to pull the shirt over your child’s head, a great feature for children with limited mobility .
All items have flat seams and no tags making them sensory. Although there are a few options to choose from, I hope they continue to expand the range. Several sizes were out of stock during my research. I also found some of the same costumes on the Disney Shop website as well.
These one-piece girls swimwear were created specifically for any girl to have easy access to the toilet. They come in a variety of styles and colors, like rainbow or cheetah, and have a magnetic waistband so there’s no tugging or pulling to take it off when nature calls it. They range in size from 12M to 16. I also found a few of these suits at walmart.com and on Amazon.co.uk.
3. Kohl’s Jumping Beans Adaptive Swimsuit
Kohl’s door several options for girls, including a ruffled one piece suit and abdominal access similar to what I found at Target, but this suit also has waist snaps for easy bathroom access. Kohl’s offers a few choices, but not many. They also have short-sleeve and long-sleeve covers with a full-length zipper and abdominal access in girls sizes 4-16. Toddler tankinis come as a set and also have abdominal access.
4. Victory Adaptive Collection
This site has quite a few options for boys and girls. Boys’ swim shorts come in several different designs with elastic waistbands and Velcro front closures, so they’re easy to put on and fit a variety of waist sizes. They also sell a full rash which has a Velcro opening all the way down the back, so it’s easy to put on and take off. The rashguard also has hidden bilateral tubing openings. If you don’t need the tube opening, the company offers to make the rash guard without.
Girls costumes are coming a play Where of them, and they have bilateral hip and back Velcro fasteners as well as hidden feeding tube inserts. The site also states that the costumes are handmade and diaper friendly. The costumes range in size from ages 6-14, so the site is aimed at older children, not toddlers.
Prices were accurate at the time this article was published, but may change over time.