Water safety month is here at Countryside YMCA. The warmer months of the year are filled with days at the beach and pool. Kids have ample opportunity to go to community pools, a friend’s house or one of the many lakes in the surrounding area. The important lessons learned during water safety month allow kids and teens to be confident in and around the water so that they can make life-long memories.

water safety month

What is Water Safety Month?

As the temperature rises, kids are going to look for a way to cool off, and this often includes spending time near water at the:

  • Beach

  • Lake

  •  Pool

  • Ponds

  • Streams

  •  Ocean

A lot of teens, as many as 2-in-3, depending on their ethnicity, never learn how to swim. The inability to swim can keep these children from enjoying many of summer’s most exciting activities, whether it be taking a dip in the pool or going to a water park with friends. Water Safety Month is an opportunity to review water safety tips. 

Parents will  play a major role in water safety by following a few tips:

  • Teach children, even if they’re good swimmers, to always swim with other people around.

  • Parents should always keep a close eye on children, especially before their teenage years, that are around any body of water.

  • Encourage the wearing of life jackets for children that don’t know how to swim or that are just learning the basics of swimming.

There's a lot to learn during National Water Safety Month for both children and adults. If you take an active role in your child's water safety, you’ll be teaching them lessons that will last a lifetime.

Why Water Safety Month is Important

Every day, two children aged 14 and under will die from drowning. In fact, drowning is the second-leading cause among this age group. If children live in areas considered ethnically diverse, this statistic can be two or three times higher.

Between 40% and 64% of children in this age group in the United States have little or no swimming ability.

Water safety month is an effort to help stop drownings in our local communities and provide children with the opportunity to learn this vital life skill. Countryside YMCA has provided water safety training for over 40 years, with multiple programs that kids can join, including:

  • Swim lessons, which provide all members with the opportunity to learn basic swimming techniques.

  • Lap swimming for members who are more advanced than what the basic class has to offer.

  • Recreational swim lessons that cover the basics and some additional techniques that will help all members improve their swimming skills.

Take the opportunity now to learn water safety tips and keep safe around water this summer. 

Why You Should Avoid Flotation Devices (Updated May 2022)

It is vital that children- from the moment they first get in the water- learn how to keep themselves afloat with only their arms and legs. When children are dependant on flotation devices to keep them above water, it is much more difficult for them to learn how to do it on their own. Flotation devices that surround both the torso and the arms- such as Puddle Jumpers- create a false sense of security in the water.

Our Swim Lesson and Water Fitness Director, Karla Toye had some eye-opening input when asked to comment on the safety and efficacy of flotation devices like Puddle Jumpers. Karla informed us that they simply are not as safe as a life jacket. These flotation devices will only hold your child afloat head up if they go into the water feet first. If the child goes into the water headfirst they will hold children upside-down head underwater. We tested this theory out with a swim team member (a very good swimmer) and it took everything she had to make herself upright.

Countryside YMCA is committed to keeping your family and our community safe by offering swim lessons to children starting at the age of six months.

Click here to check out our swim lessons!