* Baby Otter sponsored this post, but all opinions are 100% my own. If you live in Florida and have a child that does not yet know how to swim, I highly recommend you calling Baby Otter Swim School!
Every month brings with it a theme. February is Black History Month. March is National Women’s History Month. May’s theme is a bit different than the two mentioned as it is one that we hold dear to our hearts – Water Safety Month.
Did you know that about 1 in 5 people who die from drowning are children 14 and younger? Children ages 1 to 4 have the highest rates of drowning and among these children most of the drowning occurs in a home swimming pool. These scary statistics provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) are why it is so important to teach our little ones how to swim.
I live in a state where water is everywhere – lakes, the ocean and in our backyards. Home swimming pools are so commonplace due to the weather. It is imperative that we know what is needed to stay safe in the water! Below are some pointers that can be easily followed.
5 IMPORTANT WATER SAFETY TIPS
LEARN TO SWIM:
As mentioned earlier, water is all around us. Learning to swim is the first and most important way to defend oneself against drowning.
If you live in the South Florida area, I recommend calling Baby Otter to see which program is best suited for your child. Voted the Best Swim/Fitness Program in South Florida by South Florida Parenting Magazine, Baby Otter’s instructors come to your swimming pool, making it more comfortable for the future swimmer and super convenient.
Marlene, one of the owners of Baby Otter knows it can be frustrating finding the right school for your child. “My daughter had no fear of the water, and at the age of 18 months loved to just walk into the pool. Since she had no water skills, I would have to go in after her. I tried to find someone to teach her to swim, because I was only taught to teach from ages three and up. I could not find anyone to teach her so I spent the summer experimenting with my friend’s children and came up with this five-day water survival program. The Turn, Kick, Reach Swimming program has been successfully teaching children for over thirty- seven years.”
Mindy, the second half of the Baby Otter duo had to endure a frightening experience before realizing what a necessity it is to teach our children how to swim as soon as we can. “I became involved with the Turn, Kick, Reach technique after my child who at the time was 17 months old was found at the bottom of a pool. Fortunately, I knew CPR, and was able to revive her. Marlene had been after me for months to sign my daughter up for lessons, and I called her immediately telling her what happened. My daughter was in lessons practically, the next day. After experiencing what the TKR Program could do for my daughter’s safety and my peace of mind, I knew it was my mission to save lives by working with Marlene bringing the Turn, Kick, Reach program to the world. I now have two grandchildren who both learned the Turn, Kick, Reach method before they were a year old. They are both very confident swimmers who love being in the water. The peace of mind I have is priceless.”
LAYERS OF PROTECTION:
There are many things that you can do to safeguard your home.
- If you have a swimming pool, make sure that there is proper fencing surrounding the entire pool. Whether it is a baby fence or structural chain link/aluminum, this fence should be at least 4’ tall and have a lock that is not accessible for children.
- You can also install a pool alarm to alert you should someone open any of the doors or windows leading to the pool area.
- If you cannot locate your child, check the pool first.
Local hospitals and the Red Cross frequently offer CPR classes. One can also search the Internet if there are other local groups or even if the library offers a class.
DO NOT LEAVE TOYS IN THE POOL:
They are magnets for kids. A ball left floating in the pool may seem attainable to a little one.
SPREAD THE WORD:
Make swimming part of the conversation with family and friends. Join Baby Otter Andre Dawson as we push to make Florida a ZERO drowning state. It can be done, but everyone’s help is needed!