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Family Sports & Fitness

Stay in the Swim

Swimming is a great way for the whole family to get active and spend time outside. Whether you’re in a public pool, a backyard pool or natural waterway, follow these important safety tips.

Protect yourself and others from germs in the water.
   • Try not to get water in your mouth or drink swimming water.
   • Make sure everyone is clean before swimming by taking a shower with soap.
   • Always wash your hands after using the bathroom or changing diapers.
   • Take kids on frequent bathroom breaks and check diapers often. Change diapers
      in a bathroom or a diaper-changing area, not near the water.
   • Responsibly dispose of tissues and other items.

Swim safely.
   • Swim near a lifeguard.
   • Never swim alone.
   • Don’t drink alcohol if you are swimming. or watching children.
   • Floating toys like water wings and noodles are for fun – not for safety. Don’t use
     them in place of life jackets.
   • Watch out for rip currents. A rip current is when the water pulls you away
     from shore.
     If you get caught in a rip current, swim along the shoreline until you are out
     of the current, then swim to shore.

Watch children and friends carefully.
   • Make sure at least one adult is watching constantly when children are in or near
     the water.
   • Don’t drink alcohol if you are watching children.
   • Never read or use the phone while you are watching young children.
   • Watch all children in the water, even if they know how to swim. According
     to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, children under five
     and adolescents between 15 and 24 have the highest drowning rates.

Check water and weather conditions before going to the beach.
   • Don’t swim after it rains as the water is more likely to be polluted after a storm.
   • Check for signs or warnings about bacteria or other pollution in the water.
   • Get out of the water right way if you hear thunder or see lightning.
   • Strong winds can also be dangerous, so get out of the water right away
     if winds pick up.

Protect your skin from the sun.
   • Wear plenty of sunscreen with a minimum SPF of 15.
   • Apply additional sunscreen every two hours and after swimming.

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