This post was sponsored by SwimWays as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central and all opinions expressed in my post are my own.
I was just four or five years old when my parents enrolled me in swim lessons; those lessons gave me a lifelong love of swimming and a healthy respect for water safety. I would eventually spend most of my childhood competitively swimming for my local swim team, and four years as a lifeguard, swim instructor and pool manager. You’d be surprised at the number of kids who would visit the olympic size pool where I worked who either didn’t know how to swim or didn’t know basic water safety. I’m sharing some pool safety tips for parents, and some of my favorite swim aides that can make pool time safer.
I doubt I’ll ever forget this one kid who visited the pool several times per week during the summer; he had to be pulled from the deep end of the pool almost weekly because he wasn’t a strong swimmer. He wasn’t a bad swimmer, but his buddies liked to play in the deep end of the pool and he became overly tired. The 8 to 10 year old boy didn’t know what to do when he felt in distress. He would panic and start to sink, and one of the lifeguards would have to jump in after him. We eventually required him to wear a swim belt when he swam. He certainly wasn’t the only child that we had to pull out of the water. I was surprised at the number of children who were dropped off at the swimming pool that were overly confident in their swimming skills. It’s important that both children and parents are realistic with a child’s swimming ability.
Pool Safety Tips:
- Never overestimate your child’s swimming ability regardless of the number of lessons taken, age, or perceived skill level. A child should never be left unsupervised in the water, even momentarily. It only takes seconds for a child to inhale water and quickly escalate to them being in respiratory distress.
- Floatation devices can fail, especially inflatable ones. Look for water safety aids that don’t need to be blown up, because they are less likely to burst or be deflated in the water.
- Consider swimming and water safety lessons an investment in the health and welfare of your child. Even if you teach your own child how to swim, there are important potentially life saving techniques that can be learned during water safety lessons. They’re typically taught to float, when and how to call for help, and what to do if they see someone else in distress.
- Restrict access to your home pool by installing a fence with a lockable gate, removing the ladder on an above ground pool, or installing a safety cover for when the pool isn’t in use. They also make pool alarms that go off when something enters the pool.
- Create and enforce pool rules such as no jumping or diving to help prevent accidents.
- If you’re a pool owner, keep water safety and swimming aids available. I generally require any child visiting our pool (if I’m unsure of their swimming skill level) to wear a swimming aid when visiting our pool. SwimWays makes several lines of swimming aid products to help your child transition to unaided swimming.
- Don’t forget about your pets and their safety around the swimming pool. When I was 7, my close friend’s cocker spaniel drowned. He knew how to swim but he fell/got into the pool while no one was home, and he couldn’t get out. Several companies make flotation devices specifically for pets, but it’s always best to make sure that children and pets don’t have access to the pool when unsupervised.
SwimWays has created three distinct lines of swimming aid products to help your child learn to swim.
- Swim Step 1 includes water introduction and it includes infant flotation devices designed for ages 3 to 24 months.
- Swim Step 2 focuses on water exploration. This line includes swim vests and permanent floatation devices. Two of the products from this line include the Swim Sweater and the Swim Vest. The Swim Sweater was created to help kids explore the water with confidence. It was first introduced 50 years ago, and it has a stable, circular torso design that rides child’s chest for extra stability. It allows children to maintain two pre-swimming positions: the upward and forward stroke. The sun sleeves on the Swim Sweater offer UV protection. The Swim Vest includes sturdy foam inserts that provide balanced flotation. It has a front zipper with safety closure which makes it easy to suit up and remove. It offers UPF 50+ sun protection.
- Swim Step 3 is a line of graduated swim vests that can be adjusted based upon the child’s skill level or comfort in the water. We received the Power Swimr. It’s like training wheels for the pool, because it boosts swimmer confidence in the water with support. The graduated flotation system allows you advance their swimming capability at their individual pace. It has 9 removable floats which can be adjusted as your child’s swimming skills improve. The Power Swimr has adjustable side cords and a support strap to help ensure a snug fit.
SwimWays also has a line of pool toys, games, and floats to help make pool time more enjoyable.
Did you know that May 20th is National Learn to Swim Day? The 6th annual celebration just occurred last month and the day is meant to encourage and celebrate children learning to swim and teaching water safety.
We use our pool most days during the summer months. I’ve found that it’s an excellent way to get my son to spend more time outdoors and get exercise, but owning a pool is a big responsibility. You have to ensure the safety of children and pets by being a responsible pool owner. I hope that these pool safety tips come in handy and that you’re having a safe and sun filled summer. Please check out all the water safety and leisure products available through SwimWays to make your time in the water a little more fun.