Just Start Swimming: Why Everyone Needs to Know How to Swim

Every day in the United States, there are an estimated 10 deaths by drowning, yet drowning is almost always preventable.

The American Academy of Pediatrics is now recommending kids start swim lessons when they are one year old. Of course, they won’t be swimming laps at this age, but it’s a good time to get them familiar with and comfortable in the water. Many swim programs have levels catered to the age of the swimmer that increase in complexity as the student gets older.

It’s also important to note that while floating pool toys such as noodles and inner tubes make playing in the water more fun, they do not protect from drowning. The only object that can prevent a child or adult from drowning is a properly-fitted U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jacket.

As a parent, attentiveness is key. It only takes a few seconds for a drowning or near-drowning to occur. If your child is in the water, free yourself of distractions that pull your attention away from the water. Phones, tablets, magazines, books and even talking with friends could cause you to miss what’s happening in the water.

Goldfish Swim School has an easy way to remember the best practices for water safety: W.A.T.E.R.

• W: Wear your life jacket.
• A: Act if you see someone in trouble.
• T: Take swim lessons.
• E: Educate yourself on safety skills.
• R: Respect and follow the rules when you are near a body of water.

Goldfish Swim School has partnered with physicians to offer a Goldfish Rx Program, where kids can be prescribed one free swim lesson by their pediatrician. The goal of the program is to prevent cases of drowning. Pediatricians are the go-to source for information on childhood well-being. This program helps keep drowning prevention at the forefront of childhood safety.

You can learn more about swim safety and the importance of swimming lessons in the video below:

Do you have any tips on how to keep yourself and others safe in the water? Let us know in the comments below!

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Photo Credit: FamVeld

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