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OT: Do Your Kids Know How To Swim?

The Chilling Drowning Video Every Parent Needs to See (VIDEO)

by Julie Ryan Evans 

wave poolOf all the videos that get passed around and shared on the Internet, this one, which has recently gone viral, is a true must see, especially for parents. In it you see a crowded wave pool, with kids splashing and having fun. A few seconds in, a child starts drowning, but it isn't until a lifeguard jumps in and rescues her that your attention is even drawn to the drowning child.

It's chilling because it's so easy to overlook this struggling child. There's so much action and commotion all around, that nobody seems to notice. Thankfully the lifeguard does, but it's a scene that could and does play out more tragically in pools and other bodies of water everywhere.

I was at a crowded water park the other day with a lazy river, wave pools, slides, and all the usual fun water activities. There were so many people, and so much activity that such a scene would be easy to miss even if you were nearby. According to an article on Slate, of the approximately 750 children who die in a year of drowning, about 375 of them do so within 25 yards of a parent or other adult.

The video was uploaded to YouTube as part of training for lifeguards, but it's such a vital example for all parents to watch. While lifeguards are invaluable, they simply can't see everything going on and aren't always there, so we all should know what the signs of drowning look like. Here's a great article that describes four signs of drowning, which coupled with this video really makes you rethink what you thought you knew about people drowning.

Watch it. Share it. And the next time you're near water, remember it.

Do you and your kids know  how to swim?

Have you ever seen a child drowning?

Were you able to spot the child drowning in this video?

by on Jul. 31, 2013 at 2:17 PM
Replies (11-19):
by Platinum Member on Jul. 31, 2013 at 9:43 PM

I almost drowned as a child. I was in a river and I was pulled under and away from my dad who was also basically blind without his glasses. I was saved by a lifeguard but it was a very, very near thing because I had ran out of energy. 8(

My older two can at least tread water if not swim confidently. Not my younger two. We just aren't around a pool enough for them to get really good.

by on Jul. 31, 2013 at 10:47 PM

I can't swim, I can't even float. I know I took swimming lessons when I was younger but got nowhere, now I just have so much anxiety I can't relax. I am incredibly fearful of what would happen if I were to get put in a situation where I had to swim to survive. I go into pools but only in the shallow end to cool off.

DD is still young but I am going to make sure she knows how to swim. I really wish my mom had made a bigger effort with me.

by Bronze Member on Jul. 31, 2013 at 11:05 PM
My 6 year old is learning to swim now and my 3 year swims but with a puddlejumper on. If my 6 year old wants to go on the deep side of the pool he wears a vest.
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by on Aug. 1, 2013 at 12:14 AM

yup i def saw her quickly..however it does bother me that my kids arent good swimmers one can swim under water but not once she comes up at all. she just dog paddles. the others we are still working on

by on Aug. 1, 2013 at 8:34 AM
I didn't read the article, it's not something I'm ready to deal with this morning. Lol! But yes, my 8 year old can, my 4 year old cannot.
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by Gold Member on Aug. 1, 2013 at 11:40 AM

I know how to swim....was even on a swim team as a kid.  My girls took lessons this past Spring.  They could both swim 10ft unassisted by the time they were done. Neither one of them has the confidence to get out there and swim on their own yet.  When we are at a friend's house with a pool they will both lay over top of those pool noodles and swim that way.  I tried teaching my youngest to swim at an early age, but a neighbor kid at the local pool kept getting in her face...she wasn't even 2 and it scared her so bad she never wanted to go back to the pool.  My girls do have the capability to tread water and recover should they fall in.  We are still working on the "swimming" aspect of things.

by on Aug. 1, 2013 at 5:09 PM

This summer, my younger two have really become confident swimmers. They go into water that is much deeper than their heads and have even been going off the diving board (12' water). However, most of their confidence is still connected to their goggles, especially for my son. With them he feels like he can be underwater and it's no big deal but without them, he sometimes freaks out. But yes, they all CAN swim.

We did YMCA swim lessons to death... and they just reach a point where that's not enough anymore. They just have to face it and go in the deep water! Of course DH and I were with them the whole time and never more than 10 feet away even now that they are more confident. 

I think that video is pretty easy to see the girl because you're looking for her. There was a story going around the interwebz awhile back about how a guy's wife was drowning a few feet from him and he didn't notice, until the lifeguard came and scooped her up - about how a person who is drowning doesn't normally thrash around or scream like on movies, they are silent because they can't get any air, and can barely get their limbs up out of the water. 

I think parents just have to be hyper-vigilant, all the time. At the pool I'm always counting off my kids in my head - not so much the oldest, though I do make visual contact with her at least every 3 minutes - but my younger two I am looking for them pretty much the whole time we're there, or else right WITH them, catching them as the jump in, etc. 

by on Aug. 1, 2013 at 5:13 PM

Am I just really hormonal, or does that video make anyone else cry?! LOL

by on Aug. 2, 2013 at 12:10 AM

Both of my boys have had swim lessons.  The oldest can swim, but is not a confident swimmer.  My youngest needs more lessons, but he is improving.

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