Don’t get me wrong, I am actually a big fan of winter. Our family loves skiing, snowboarding, sledding, hot chocolate; all of the above. My 3 year old even loves shoveling snow! As we start getting closer to March, however, I start missing the sun and warmth a little bit and cannot wait for Spring Break. Plus, after last year, we are all ready to get out on vacation after staring at the same four walls for wayyyy too long. Before you plan your big trip to Hawaii, or Lava Hot Springs, take some time to think about how you want to prep your kids (if you are taking them) for the trip.
First, if you are going to be around open, natural water make sure you pack a USCG approved life jacket. A good life jacket has a strap under the legs for younger kids and puts your child in a back float, swimming position in the water. Puddle jumpers, which keep kids upright in the water (also known as “drowning position”) should not be used.
Drowning is also 100% preventable. Please stop relying on puddle jumpers in the swimming pool. Enroll your child in swim lessons. Put up as many barriers between your child and the water as possible. Avoid flotation devices in the pool, but ALWAYS wear life jackets in natural water, since it is dark, has undercurrents and unknown depth/dangers.
Second, teach your child to ALWAYS ask before going into or near the water. The best safety precaution around pools or open water is having adult supervision. Before ever heading towards your vacation spot, you can practice this life-saving habit at a local pool or discuss it in your home. Once you are at your swimming location, keep kids (especially ages 1-4) within arms reach and never assume someone else is watching your child even during “non-swimming” times.
Finally, enroll your child in swimming lessons!!!! Quality lessons will focus on safety first, teaching your infant or child what to do if they end up in the water unsupervised (regardless of precautions 69% of drownings, for children under the age of 5, happen during times when no one expected the child to be in the water). Once safety skills have been learned, which should take a couple of weeks if you are going consistently, your child’s instructor should teach them how to begin moving themselves through the water by kicking and using back or front stroke.
Here at Mountain Wave Swimming, we are ready and able to help your family prepare to have a fun, enjoyable time in and around water. No matter where your Spring Break takes you in 2021 we can make sure you are confident that your whole family will be safe. Give us a call today ?