Miller Swim School Advocates Water Safety

Managing Editor

AVOIDING DANGER: Besides swimming lessons and other recreational water activities, Miller Swim School, 6415 S. Mingo Rd., also offers regular water safety instruction.

Courtesy Miller Swim School

Soon, the warm weather and sunshine will be back for spring and summer, and kids will be heading outside. This time of year especially, pool, lake and boat safety become of the utmost importance.

In preparation for the season, Miller Swim School, 6415 S. Mingo Rd., holds its annual Canoe Week, where instructors focus on safety around boats and bodies of water. They reiterate pool rules that children tend to forget, including no running around the pool, no swimming while chewing gum or eating candy, and allowing 30 minutes after eating before swimming.

Children also learn how to put on a life jacket in the water in case they fall into the water without a life jacket on. “People don’t realize how much harder it is to put on a life jacket in the water,” says Marketing Director Sarah Clavin.

Something that Miller Swim School instructors teach is the mantra “reach, throw, never go,” meaning reach out to grab the individual or throw something into the water but never go into the water, Clavin says, “because a panicked child can drown another.” She emphasizes that a person can throw anything in the water that will float long enough to allow the individual to get to the boat—a noodle, household items, a trash can, even an empty pop bottle.

Students are also told to always “look before they leap,” says Clavin. Jumping or diving into water before a person knows the depth of the water can cause major head injuries.

Of course, the education can’t stop with the child; parents must also be informed. Therefore, instructors make a point to educate parents in the waiting area while their children are learning in the pool.

Especially for families with young children and infants, water safety at home should be of high concern.

Clavin, who has a six-month-old daughter, is constantly reminding herself and her husband to “keep the toilet cover down, the shower curtain closed, the door to the bathroom closed,” she says—all things that can easily be overlooked or forgotten. These are reminders that mothers in Miller’s Mommy and Me classes regularly receive.

Families who own pools face another set off challenges.

Clavin recommends keeping toys far away from the pool, locked up if possible, to keep children from seeing the toys and wanting to take them into the pool unsupervised. Also, chairs and tables placed too close to the pool can cause danger if children sit on them and then fall into the pool.

If a child is small enough to fit through a doggie door, parents are encouraged to install a fence around the backyard and, if they own a pool, create a barrier outside between it and the door.

While many of these suggestions may seem logical or simplistic, oftentimes they are forgotten, says Clavin. However, if followed, Clavin can’t count the number of times that she’s heard about one of these practices saving someone’s life.

Recently, she was told about a young boy who fell through the ice while playing outside. He was able to use the heavy clothing he was wearing to stay afloat on the water until his mother pulled him out.

The family had received regular water safety instruction from Miller Swim School, and “that teaching is ingrained in them,” Clavin says.

Updated 02-25-2014

Back to Top


email (we never post emails)
  Textile Help

Back to Top

Contact GTR News

About Post Author