One of the best things about summer is that you can spend all day in the water. Whether its at the lake, the pool, or water park, there are a few things you should know before getting your feet wet.
Everyone should know some basic lifesaving swim strokes. Even if it is only enough to get you to the surface to call for help, or get you to the edge of the pool, it could be the difference between life and death. Young children should take swim lessons so that they understand the dangers of the water and how to be safe in and around the water. You can find swim lessons that are for children as young as 1 year (sometimes younger).
If you are a family that is around water frequently, it is especially important to get all kiddos enrolled in swim lessons. It takes less than 2 minutes to drown. Swim lessons could save your child’s life!
ALWAYS HAVE A BUDDY
We all know about the buddy system, and the same applies to the water. No matter how comfortable or experienced you are in the water, you should always swim with a buddy. Even the most experienced swimmers can get into trouble. Children and teens should only swim under adult supervision.
Never leave any swimmer unsupervised and alone. Remember, you cold drowned in as little as a teaspoon of water and in as little as 120 seconds. NEVER LEAVE ANYONE ALONE IN THE WATER.
TAKE PROPER PRECAUTIONS
If you have a pool, you need to be mindful of how to keep pets, people and other things out of the water. Installing a fence or barrier around the pool makes access to your pool harder for unwanted visitors. It also makes it harder to accidentally fall in. You can also install things like pool alarms that create a sound if it senses waves (like ones that would be made if someone fell in). These are highly recommended for people with young children.
If you’re on the lake this summer, life jackets are essential. Even more important is making sure the life jacket fits properly. If it does not fit properly, it may not save your life. Once the life jacket is on, tug up on the shoulders. If the life jacket comes above the ears it is too big, either tighten the straps or get a smaller size. The life jacket should not come above the ears when raising your arms.
WHEN IN DOUBT, ASK!
No matter where you are swimming, you can always ask the life guard where the safest place to swim is. Places like the ocean can have invisible dangers, you may not know they are there, but the life guards definitely will.
Make sure all kiddos know to ask before going into the water. This makes sure that you always know where your kids are, and ensures that they know the water is not a place to go alone.
This is by no means everything you need to know about swimming safely this summer, but it is a good place to start. Knowing how to be safe in and around water is the key to being safe and having a summer full of fun. Just don’t forget the sunscreen.