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Thread: Kids in the pool

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    Kids in the pool

    While soaking up Vitamin D yesterday, I started thinking about what age would be appropriate for the kids to be in the pool without a parent/responsible adult out there too. I know that this is highly subjective based on each kid, but what age did you (with older kids) think it was OK? For those with younger kids, what age do you think would be appropriate? What are the factors that go into your decision?

    I am not sure when it might be appropriate. This is further complicated by the fact that both my girls, aged 7 & nearly 9, are accomplished swimmers and swim competitively year around. I am a lifeguard and swim lesson instructor and they can tell me all the safety and swimming rules I teach my students. I still don't let them go to our home pool without a responsible adult.

    I am just curious what others think.
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    Re: Kids in the pool

    My daughter is nine and I don't let her swim alone. Not sure what age I would just yet. The current Rule is no one swims alone ever.
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    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
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    Re: Kids in the pool

    We didn't let ours swim unsupervised until they were in their teens. Things can happen to disable a good swimmer, and unless there is another responsible person there able to help, it could become tragic. Ours are in their 20s, and I usually go sit on the deck if they go out to swim even now.

    Our grandkids operate under the rule of never even entering the pool area alone unless they ask us first, and no swimming for the rest of the year if they do. My 6 year-old grandson hops around asking if he can go change in the poolhouse before everybody else gets out of the car because he knows this is a non-negotiable rule and punishment.
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    elwood58's Avatar
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    Re: Kids in the pool

    Nobody swims alone in our pool, even adults. We have nine Grandkids ranging in age from 9 months to 10 years old. They are allowed in the pool only when one of their parents is with them. On the odd occasion we have Grandkids without their parents, one of us is with them.

    I do not envision a time where anyone would swim alone. Too many things can happen, regardless of swimming skills.
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    Re: Kids in the pool

    Quote Originally Posted by JohnT
    Our grandkids operate under the rule of never even entering the pool area alone unless they ask us first, and no swimming for the rest of the year if they do.
    That's a very good rule. I will have to use it. My 2 1/2 year old grandson loves to come to Paw Paw's house and swim!
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    Re: Kids in the pool

    My 10 (11 in 2 weeks) and 13 year old girls swim alone. However, I have a 48 inch deep ABG pool, and both of them can easily stand in it.

    If there was any water that was over their heads, they would not be swimming alone.

    My 10 year old also has a love affair with snorkling. She will wear her snorkel and mask and swim around and surface dive all day long. When she is alone in the pool, she is not allowed to snorkel. She can swim, walk around, or use a float, but no snorkling.

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    Re: Kids in the pool

    My youngest is 13 yrs old, and I do let her and her best friend swim without me out there........although I do always check out the window every so often to make sure they are safe. I have alot of windows that look out to the pool, so it makes it easy to keep an eye on them.

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    Re: Kids in the pool

    I did not even let my kids in the pool without an adult in the water until they were about 9 or so, then I made sure I was always out there with them after that. I get anxious when my neighbor/SIL lets her 6 and 4 y/o in without a grownup in. (One can't touch but wears a life vest, other can touch but barely.) If I am not in the pool I tell her they can't swim unless she is right there. I am one of those overly cautious types.
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    Re: Kids in the pool

    I grew up on a lake. I could literally walk out of my bedroom door, through the back yard, and jump off the end of the dock at any time. To say I'm comfortable around water is an understatement.

    That said, I get nervous about jumping into my pool if nobody is home. I agree with the comments above, nobody swims alone, not even adults. Sure, me or my wife might jump in while the other is in the house, but we check on each other or stay in sight. It would be too easy to slip and hit your head, come off the diving board wrong, etc. Just not worth the risk IMO.

    I would not be uncomfortable having my daughter and another kid at the pool, even back when she was 10. I know she is an extremely good swimmer and has a level head. Just nobody by themselves.
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    Re: Kids in the pool

    I have had our AG pool for 7+ years and this is the first year for my daughter to be in it without an adult in the water. This is also the first year she was able to stand with her head out of the water. She is only allowed in while we can hear her. Hearing her is not an issue, she makes more noise than any 10 kids. She is also allowed in with her friends that are of the same ability and maturity. My pool is a flat floor pool with 48 inches of water.
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    Re: Kids in the pool

    My boys are 15 and 18- they can swim anytime they want, but if the 15 year old has friends over an adult needs to be home, and I don't mean the 18 years old!! I thought I'd worry less as they got older....HA!
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    Re: Kids in the pool

    My daughter is 6, we estimate she'll be able to touch bottom in 2 more summers so that will be a load of stress off, as for swimming alone, I have no clue right now about I honestly can't see that happening before something around 11-13 years old.
    Were also very non-compromising on rules, they are there to be obeyed by her and her friends.

    Our pool is close to our garage, close enough that I know that someday I'm gonna see some meat head boy up on it trying to impress the girls by jumping in from it. I'm already planting the seeds in her head that it's gonna be embarassing for her if I see that.
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    Re: Kids in the pool

    Sounds like maybe those seeds need to plant something tall enough to prevent roof jumping but not strong enough to support meatheads. LOL

    The idea of when to let your kids swim alone is a really kind of a tough personal decision that will make itself clear when the kid is ready.
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    Re: Kids in the pool

    Out here they are always telling parents to "watch your kids around water". Unfortuneatly, they DO need to do that because there are at least 10+ kids a year drown in the Phoenix area. We moved into our house with an inground pool when my son was 1y/o. We made it a priority to teach him to swim, I'm pretty sure by the time he was 3 maybe 4 he as able to swim underwater to get to the side of the pool. He's 10 now and does swim by himself, although he never does because it's only "fun" if someone else is in the pool with him. I'm not sure when we started offically letting him swim by himself, but it seems like he was 7-8.

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    Re: Kids in the pool

    All interesting perspectives.

    I agree with the never alone rule - that is one I teach in my lessons. This is the first year that they are allowed to get in before an adult, but only if they ask first. I guess I will know when the time is right for being out there without an adult, but it certainly isn't yet. I started them in swim lessons because I wanted them safe in the pool. Later I became and instructor then a lifeguard. I know how quickly bad things can happen. I also teach ways for kids to safely help those in trouble in the pool.
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    Re: Kids in the pool

    My 8 and 12 year old are both strong swimmers and I trust them in the pool together - one of them will come get help if they can't handle it. I won't swim by myself alone but I will with the two kids after having them show me that they could get me out of the deep end to the steps without help.

    Even when they swim alone we are watching off and on because they are - brother and sister and fight too often!
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    Re: Kids in the pool

    I have two 10 year olds in there now, I can hear them and I'm in the house
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    Re: Kids in the pool

    Hi,
    I'll put in 2 cents. We always have an adult watching no matter who is in the pool. I'm a nervous nelly, but I know a drowning person makes no sound. Even if there is another kid with them, they may not know what to do without endangering both. We might not get out of the house fast enough. Some times kids don't realize the games they make up to play aren't a good idea, and some one can get hurt.
    We don't let anyone in the pool with out one of us there. Our kids and their friends get that, fortunately.
    So we have a nice area for us to sit and drink ice tea with a fan on.
    Great discussion!

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    Re: Kids in the pool

    FYI - people can drown in less than 60 seconds.

    With that said, a friend and I swam without adults present from about 8 yrs old on.
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    Re: Kids in the pool

    No one is allowed in our pool alone. The kids were allowed to go in without an adult around 15. Depends a bit on maturity level. Way to easy to hurt yourself in the pool. Ours is above ground so no diving but my oldest still hit his head on the bottom just jumping in, he was 16 I think. He got a slight concussion. If he was alone and hit harder....yikes.
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