Outdoor pools are opening soon – including the outdoor pool and play areas at the Hogan Family YMCA in Madison on Memorial Day Weekend. As part of National Water Safety Month in May, the Heart of the Valley YMCA encourages parents to take an active role in fostering a relationship between their children and swimming, beginning with water safety. Following are safety tips to practice when in and around the water:
• Only swim when and where there is a lifeguard on duty; never swim alone.
• Adults should constantly and actively watch their children.
• Inexperienced or non-swimmers should wear a Coast Guard-approved life jacket.
• Parents or guardians of young children should be within an arm’s reach.
• Children and adults should not engage in breath holding activities.
In addition to learning lifesaving water safety skills, swimming is a great way to increase physical activity. Swimming also motivates children to strive for self-improvement, teaches goal orientation and cultivates a positive mental attitude and high self-esteem. It also teaches life lessons of sport and sportsmanship.
The Heart of the Valley YMCA continues to help youth and adults experience the joy and benefits of swimming, so they can be healthy, confident and secure in the water. There are a variety of programs to choose, including Mommy & Me/Parent & Child swim lessons for toddlers, progressive group and private swim lessons for all ages, family swim, swim team and 100-Mile Swim Club. To ensure that everyone has an opportunity to participate, financial assistance is available to those in need. Reach out to your local branch for more information about swimming at the Y!