How to prepare for a water safe Summer
With the weather starting to heat up and Summer on the horizon, now more than ever it is important to equip you and your loved ones with essential swimming and water safety skills! To some, the thought of learning to swim may come with associations to a competitive sport - something they see in the Olympics. However, life can throw several curve balls, many of which may require the knowledge of how to swim.
Swimming and water safety skills are not only needed when in and around swimming pools - both adults and children may find themselves encountering rivers, dams and the beach anytime throughout the year. Young children are often drawn to water, this may even be around the home with items that may not be seen as a risk such as bathtubs, sinks and even buckets of water. There are a number of steps you can take to ensure you and your child are well prepared when it comes to water safety this summer, here are a few we think are the most important:
Get into swimming lessons - ASAP
According to Royal Lifesaving Australia, children who learn how to swim from a young age are less likely to experience drownings. From the age of 6 months, children can start developing their skills, including returning back to the edge, turning their bodies in the water, floating on their backs. As children progress their learning can include performing survival strokes, learning how to use a life jacket or simply just calling out for help. They can also start learning skills to help rescue others. If you or your child don’t know how to swim – it is never too late to learn!
Ensure your home is secure
It is so important to be extra mindful when at home, as there are no extra eyes to ensure your children are safe around water. Make sure to watch your children when they are in and around water at home. Young children can drown in as little as one inch of water. Keep all tubs, buckets, containers and kids pools empty when not in use. It is a great idea to keep them stored upside down and away from children's reach. Keep the lids to the toilets and doors to the bathrooms and laundry closed, it's even best to hide the bathtub plug from your children. Finally, always make sure the fence around your pool at home is closed, and there is no way your child can climb over, especially when an adult is not around.
Expand your skill set
Enrolling in a CPR and First Aid Course is always a great idea. Even if it is not a requirement for your job, it is always a great skill to have. Knowing how to administer CPR to people of all ages can be the difference between a life being saved or a life being lost. Knowing basic water rescue skills is also something that is worth your while as it is important to know how to respond in an emergency without putting yourself or others at risk.
Not only is swimming a skill that is retained for life, but it can also improve confidence in and around water. Once confident and familiar with the water, both adults and children are less likely to find themselves in a life-threatening situation when it comes to the water. It is also a great opportunity for parents to connect with other parents while their child/children are in the water learning a vital life-skill.