This is a great time of year for kids to learn how to be safe and confident swimmers. This skill is undeniably critical in reducing the risk of drowning which is the second leading cause of death among children ages 1 to 14.* Equally important is the role of parents in water safety education. Here are some basic tips to keep in mind.
- Many accidents can be avoided by never leaving children unsupervised around water. As much as swim lessons will help them understand their limits, no one of any age should swim beyond the range of help.
- A good practice is to assign a "water watcher" who avoids distractions like reading or talking on the phone.
- Flotation devices, such as water wings or floaties, can create a false sense of security. That's why they're typically not used in swim training.
- When you're at the pool take time to read the posted rules. For example, avoid running and only dive in designated areas.
- Don't swim in areas without lifeguards or adults.
- At the first sign of lightning or thunder get out of the water.
- Dunking anyone is strictly prohibited.
- Beginners should not swim in water more than chest deep.
- Always swim with a buddy.
If you're unsure of when to start your child in a swim program, consult your pediatrician. Or ask our certified instructors about classes appropriate to your child. Lessons are offered year round, giving kids of all levels and ages the chance to master skills, gain confidence and build endurance as soon as they're ready. Our classes are small so everyone gets plenty of attention, and private lessons are also available to focus on individual strengths and weaknesses.*US Center for Disease Control and Prevention