Just like many things in life, hanging out at the pool comes with its own set of unwritten rules (and written ones, if you’re at a public pool). With summer just around the corner, your kids are likely going to start spending more time by the pool, so you will want to make sure everyone is as safe as possible. Whether you’re hanging out at someone’s backyard pool or taking in some rays at a public pool, always make sure you don’t let your kid do these dangerous things.
Enrolling your child in swimming school could be a major advantage for them in reducing the risk of drowning and making them more comfortable in the water. Not only will they arrive at the pool knowing how to swim, they will also be well versed in pool etiquette and will be less likely to break some of these unwritten rules.
1. Run on the Deck
There is a reason that at public pools you are constantly hearing lifeguards yell at people to stop running around the edge of the pool. It is extremely dangerous. This area is wet and slippery, and all it takes is one wrong foot placement for someone to slip and fall. Not only could your kid fall in the water and potentially get caught unexpected, they could also slip and hit their head on the edge of the pool or on the hard deck in front of them. Sure, they may want to get to the diving board before their friends do, but they need to slow it down for their own sake.
2. Swim Alone or Out of Sight
According to KidsHealth, nearly 1,000 children drown every year, and the majority of those incidents happen in home swimming pools. Those pools don’t have lifeguards who are professionally trained to supervise children in the water. Never let your child swim alone or without supervision, whether it’s your supervision or a trained expert. If something happens to them and no one is paying attention or no one can see them, they won’t get the help they need in an emergency, which could lead to a situation no one ever wants.
3. Push Other Kids Into the Pool
Of course, you’ve seen those funny videos of people pushing others into the pool in their clothes. However, this is actually dangerous for the person being pushed. When you’re not expecting it, you could end up hitting your head on the way in, or you could drown from not being ready to hold your breath. Additionally, if you let your child start doing this to others at a young age, you can be setting them up to seriously injure someone in the future and allow them to develop a habit that isn’t very nice. No one actually wants to be unexpectedly pushed into a pool, so make sure your kid isn’t that kid.
4. Not Wear Sunscreen
We all know about the risk of being in the sun without protection. It is incredibly dangerous for anyone at the pool to not wear sunscreen, especially your child’s delicate, growing skin. Make sure you get every single inch of exposed skin to protect them from the sun’s harmful rays. Sunscreen also needs to be reapplied often throughout the day, as well as any time your child comes out of the pool. Here’s a great tip – always apply sunscreen to your child before you get to the pool, because once you arrive and they see that water waiting for them, they’ll beeline for it. This makes it much harder to grab them and make them sit still while you apply sunscreen.
5. Pee in the Pool
No one should be urinating in a pool, and not just because it’s gross or makes the water warm. It’s actually quite dangerous. A study published in the Journal of Environmental Science & Technology actually found that when the nitrogen in urine is mixed with chlorine, it creates a toxic chemical called cyanogen chloride. This chemical is likened to tear gas, with the capability of poisoning and actually killing human beings in large amounts. While it would take a lot of kids peeing in the pool to create enough cyanogen chloride to actually harm or kill a swimmer, it’s best to just make sure your kid isn’t contributing to the issue in the first place.