Staying Afloat: Why Kids Should Learn to Swim

Staying Afloat: Why Kids Should Learn to Swim

Learning to swim should be easy. It seems so simple. Bodies will stay afloat in water because they’re buoyant. But, in some areas, children and adults never get exposed to the water to learn to swim. A surprising number of adults in the U.S. can’t swim, and many are petrified of the water as a result. How sad! These adults then don’t teach their children to swim, and the cycle continues.

Learning the skill of swimming can be taught in a few lessons.

Saving Lives by Learning to Swim

In some communities, access to swimming pools and other bodies of water is difficult. But, when the time comes, not knowing how to swim can be deadly.


In states like Arizona with its deserts, it would seem unlikely that children would drown, but some children drown in canals and irrigation ditches, as well as swimming pools. Arizona children drown at twice the national average for children under age 15.

In Florida, surrounded by water, children drown because their community doesn’t have the community pools and other resources where children can learn to swim. In 2014, Florida led the country in child drownings with 50 children under 15 drowned.

Seeing these statistics, it reinforces just how important it is that children learn to swim. Acclimating children to water and teaching them to swim is not only a pleasurable activity, but it can be a life-saving one.


Here are some strategies to save a child’s life, since all children are vulnerable to drowning:

Fence Your Pool

Make it difficult for a child to get into the enclosure. It is too easy for children to slip into a pool enclosure if there is not a lock on the gate. Pools need to be fenced, even if your yard is enclosed because children can slip in. And, make sure that anytime kids are in your pool an adult is supervising — and paying attention. Don’t let your pool be the source of a tragedy.

Enroll Your Child in Swimming Lessons

Be there for them and support them in the effort. Cheer them on and encourage them to succeed. If you decide to enroll your child in lessons, check out the program. If the program shows children how to start swimming by teaching them the “Dead man’s float” you might consider a different program.


Get Involved

Participate in community efforts and partnerships to make swimming accessible to every child. Communities need partners from the business world to assist in this universal swimming project. By developing community pools and involving businesses, it builds a community. Businesses can sponsor swim teams, volunteer for coaching, and provide scholarships for swim classes. Children learn from example and by taking lessons, they have role models. They might even decide they want to be on a swim team, building physical stamina and self-confidence.

    Make Swimming Fun in Your Family

    A child who is fearful of the water needs role models to make the experience accessible. Take the kids to a pool or lake. Get your swimsuit on and be ready to stay with them for the experience. If you can swim, show them in easy steps how to begin. Begin with just getting in the water.

    For young children, use floats to give them a sense of security. Have them hold their breath out of the water, then make funny noises like a motorboat with most of their face out of the water. Ease them in gradually. Hold their arms and let them kick to get a rhythm. Make it fun.


    Take Lessons Yourself

    If you are not a swimmer, take lessons with your child so you can be confident and know the skill you are promoting. A whole new world will open to both of you if you can share the experience of learning as well as the fun experiences of a day at the beach or pool.

    While swimming can be a pleasurable pastime, remember to stay with your child. Children need to be watched because an accidental drowning can happen very quickly. Once they are a confident and experienced swimmer, you can all relax and enjoy the water. And, the child will be comfortable around the water. On a hot summer day, you’ll be glad.

    Featured photo credit: Frank McKenna via

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    Last Updated on May 15, 2019

    How to Tap Into the Power of Positivity

    How to Tap Into the Power of Positivity

    As it appears, the human mind is not capable of not thinking, at least on the subconscious level. Our mind is always occupied by thoughts, whether we want to or not, and they influence our every action.

    “Happiness cannot come from without, it comes from within.” – Helen Keller

    When we are still children, our thoughts seem to be purely positive. Have you ever been around a 4-year old who doesn’t like a painting he or she drew? I haven’t. Instead, I see glee, exciting and pride in children’s eyes. But as the years go by, we clutter our mind with doubts, fears and self-deprecating thoughts.


    Just imagine then how much we limit ourselves in every aspect of our lives if we give negative thoughts too much power! We’ll never go after that job we’ve always wanted because our nay-saying thoughts make us doubt our abilities. We’ll never ask that person we like out on a date because we always think we’re not good enough.

    We’ll never risk quitting our job in order to pursue the life and the work of our dreams because we can’t get over our mental barrier that insists we’re too weak, too unimportant and too dumb. We’ll never lose those pounds that risk our health because we believe we’re not capable of pushing our limits. We’ll never be able to fully see our inner potential because we simply don’t dare to question the voices in our head.

    But enough is enough! It’s time to stop these limiting beliefs and come to a place of sanity, love and excitement about life, work and ourselves.


    So…how exactly are we to achieve that?

    It’s not as hard as it may seem; you just have to practice, practice, practice. Here are a few ideas on how you can get started.

    1. Learn to substitute every negative thought with a positive one.

    Every time a negative thought crawls into your mind, replace it with a positive thought. It’s just like someone writes a phrase you don’t like on a blackboard and then you get up, erase it and write something much more to your liking.


    2. See the positive side of every situation, even when you are surrounded by pure negativity.

    This one is a bit harder to put into practice, which does not mean it’s impossible.

    You can find positivity in everything by mentally holding on to something positive, whether this be family, friends, your faith, nature, someone’s sparkling eyes or whatever other glimmer of beauty. If you seek it, you will find it.

    3. At least once a day, take a moment and think of 5 things you are grateful for.

    This will lighten your mood and give you some perspective of what is really important in life and how many blessings surround you already.


    4. Change the mental images you allow to enter your mind.

    How you see yourself and your surroundings make a huge difference to your thinking. It is like watching a DVD that saddens and frustrates you, completely pulling you down. Eject that old DVD, throw it away and insert a new, better, more hopeful one instead.

    So, instead of dwelling on dark, negative thoughts, consciously build and focus on positive, light and colorful images, thoughts and situations in your mind a few times a day.

    If you are persistent and keep on working on yourself, your mind will automatically reject its negative thoughts and welcome the positive ones.

    And remember: You are (or will become) what you think you are. This is reason enough to be proactive about whatever is going on in your head.

    Featured photo credit: Kyaw Tun via

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