Once you’re confident that your kids are water safe, you can breathe a sigh of relief. You’ve done your job. The swimming lessons are over. Teaching your kids to swim really paid off.
Don’t pour that margarita and lose yourself in a summer read just yet, though. When you understand what water safety means, it’s also important to have a good grasp of what it doesn’t mean.
3 Things Water Safety Doesn’t Mean
- It doesn’t mean that you’ve removed all risk. Swimming, like the rest of life, will never be completely without risk. Water is a powerful element. Even water that doesn’t look overly rough can toss large adults around. Have fun but be careful.
- It doesn’t mean being able to swim without adult supervision. No one, including an adult, should ever swim alone. One slip and a bump on the head on dry land is probably nothing more than a boo-boo. In the water, it could mean death.
- It doesn’t mean being a competitive swimmer. Mastering the major strokes requires many hours of committed training. The number of hours to mastery being thrown around these days is 10,000. That’s five years of forty-hour work weeks. Not many swimmers have that much training under their trunks.
Mastery also requires a high level of motor development. Your child’s level of coordination in the water will look a lot like his coordination on land. Before you find yourself disappointed with his crawl, ask yourself how good he is at jumping rope.