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Swim jackets for holiday with a pool on the doorstep

(35 Posts)
AmeliaToppingLovesShopping Mon 28-Jul-14 16:59:05

We are going abroad for the first time as a family this year. The house we are staying in has a pool literally on its doorstep.

I am thinking of getting the two youngest, non-swimmers, a swim jacket to wear but not sure if I am being over cautious or if they are actually any good.

There will be three adults, two near teens who can swim and the two complete non-swimmers who are 6 and 4. The pool is probably too deep for the youngest to stand in and the deep end too deep for the 6 year old.

Obviously I will keep an eye on them at all times but I'm worried about the times I cant, like when I have to go shopping for food and they are left with a grandparent.


specialsubject Mon 28-Jul-14 17:13:26

Be aware that unless you put them in a lifejacket with a neck collar, they will float the way they fall in if wearing a buoyancy aid - and they may fall in face down. So this doesn't help unless someone is actually watching and can take immediate action.

a lifejacket will be far too hot to wear if this is a sunny trip.

Shonajay Mon 28-Jul-14 17:14:48

Swim jackets are fabulous, we had them for the kids but weren't inflated round the collar. Worth every penny.

TSSDNCOP Mon 28-Jul-14 17:20:32

DS had a Sharkfin. It's Velcro round their waist, keeps their arms free but their heads up if they go in.

Nothing though compared to the vigilance you will need to employ. It's not an option to leave an unattended child by the pool even if you pop in to the loo or for drinks.

Sorry, that's probably teaching you to suck eggs.

Babiecakes11 Mon 28-Jul-14 17:47:00

When we went to my dads villa in Spain we went there with 6 kids (not all ours we only have a ds) under 5 and everyone of them had arm bands on from the minute we arrived at his until we came home unless it was bedtime or we went out, my ds was the only child that went in the water without clinging to an adult and he was two. We wanted to make sure if one of the kids escaped our view that they would be safe and yell for us if needed, none of them did get out our view but it have us parents peace of mind.

AmeliaToppingLovesShopping Mon 28-Jul-14 19:21:35

Thank you. I am planning on staying with them as much as possible but there are times that they will be left with just one adult and it is worrying me a bit. They aren't used to swimming pools as we don't really go swimming.

We are going to Cyprus so I think it will be very very hot!

I was thinking of something like this

BikeRunSki Mon 28-Jul-14 19:28:01

Dd had a similar vest to that recently. Brilliant for learning to swim under supervision, but it won't turn the wearer over if they fall in face down.

apermanentheadache Mon 28-Jul-14 19:29:14

I really, really wouldn't recommend the float jackets. As a pp said it is easy for a child to get stuck floating face down. I think you either have to not leave the little ones with GPs if you don't trust them, or have a very serious conversation with them about pool safety.

How long is it till you go? Any chance of teaching them before you depart?

Well the swim vests might be better than nothing but proper life jackets would be better - but never leave them unattended. Goes without saying!

AmeliaToppingLovesShopping Mon 28-Jul-14 19:48:45

It's not that I don't trust the grandparents I am just worrying for no reason I think.

I will take them swimming before we go to get used to being around a pool but there is no way that they will be able to learn to swim as it is only 2 weeks away.

The other DC are 12 (mine) and 10 (DNiece) and they will be with the younger 2 at all times as well I would imagine.

They will have arm bands available and lots of other floats and blow up toys as well.

I will speak to their grandparents and tell them I am a bit concerned. They are really good so I think they will try and reassure me. I have never taken any of the DC abroad before so a bit nervous and think I have focused it on the pool.

TheLeftovermonster Mon 28-Jul-14 20:11:01

Teach them what to do if they fall in the pool, and talk to the older kids about being careful around them.

TheIronGnome Mon 28-Jul-14 20:19:23

Those swim jackets aren't great, even with an adult in the pool children wearing them can end up face down. Could well work against you as a false sense of security.

You can get wristbands that set of an alarm if they are submersed- could be an option?

AmeliaToppingLovesShopping Mon 28-Jul-14 20:24:42

TheIronGnome thank you I will look into those.

specialsubject Mon 28-Jul-14 20:39:52

you are wise to think about this, the odds of a tragedy are tiny but it does happen.

those are float coats and will not support heads or turn the right way up. So house rules for the younger ones are:

- float coats worn near or in the pool
- adult watching at all times (and that is WATCHING, not reading a book or sleeping). Shift system so there is a positive changeover.
- if the adult couldn't help if the child is in trouble, one of the older ones could. It would only be a matter of pulling them to the edge and then out.

pool tragedies happen when someone doesn't notice in time. Keep watching.

but enjoy your holiday!

AmeliaToppingLovesShopping Mon 28-Jul-14 21:35:30

I was given a guide to drowning when the DDs were still in nursery and it said about how difficult it can be to spot somebody who is in trouble. You expect lots of shouting and splashing but actually they can be silent and motionless.

The older 2 have said that they will help with the younger 2 in the pool but they are far too young to have responsibility so I will make sure that there is at least 1 adult with them at all times.

TheLeftovermonster Mon 28-Jul-14 21:48:59

If you are sure you can react in time, you can leave them with no swimming aids while watching and see what they get up to. That way they may learn what their limits are, and you'll be able to assess the possible dangers.
Lifejackets may be uncomfortable if worn for a long time; they also won't help them develop water confidence, so I'd only use them when you can't watch them closely.
There really isn't a substitute for a responsible adult watching.

FoodieToo Mon 28-Jul-14 21:50:35

You just have to bring them shopping etc with you. We are just back from such a holiday. We always have a villa with pool.
We have five kids and never , ever take our eyes off them.
One adult at least,always on duty.

Or else ,out of the pool.

Why can't the kids take a break from the pool?

Tinymrscollings Mon 28-Jul-14 21:58:39

Whereabouts are you going? If it's France you're in luck

Tinymrscollings Mon 28-Jul-14 21:59:01
AmeliaToppingLovesShopping Mon 28-Jul-14 22:11:20

Most of the time I will be there or we will all go out but their grandma has said that on the first morning the kids will stay with their granddad while we go shopping.

No not France it is Cyprus and a private pool so nobody else around and no lifeguards.

Last time I took them swimming was very stressful so I haven't taken them since. I will make sure we go a few times before the holiday so they can practice how to behave while we are away.

Thank you for the suggestions.

TSSDNCOP Mon 28-Jul-14 22:17:43

OP I'm in Cyprus right now.

The villa pools here are very deep with quite high sides.

Seriously, if you haven't got a competent swimmer watching the kids, they shouldn't be in the pool. There's loads of non pool stuff to do here, and even the supermarkets are kid friendly vs the uk.

Don't risk it.

AmeliaToppingLovesShopping Mon 28-Jul-14 22:47:33

We aren't staying in a holiday villa it is a privately owned house. The deep end does look very deep though.

I would not describe myself as a competent swimmer but I can swim well enough to help if they get into trouble. To be honest I think it will be so hot I will spend a lot of time in the pool myself.

I will make sure that there is somebody sensible with them at all times while we are over there. There Granddad is very good and the older 2 will be able to help.

Thank you for all of the advice.

RonaldMcDonald Mon 28-Jul-14 22:57:35

We used these everyday before the kids could swim confidently
they are excellent in everyway and the kids seemed keen to wear them

steppemum Mon 28-Jul-14 23:08:15

we go every year to a private house with pool.

Our none swimmers always wear armbands outside. Armbands are not hot, easy to put on, and if the fall in they will float the right way up.
The one thing they won't do is float an unconscious person with head out of the water.

But with ours, we went with non swimmers and came back with swimmers every time. The youngest usually forgot by the next year, and then learnt to swim all over again on our 2 weeks away.

The most dangerous bit was when they could just swim. We would let them have their armbands off with us (to learn), and they would throw themselves across the pool and swim UNDER water, and we would have to pull them to the surface to breath!

You may find that their is a gate. Many European countries have laws about pools, where they have to have a fence and a locked gate, even pools in private houses, so that animals and kids can't accidentally fall in.

PPaka Mon 28-Jul-14 23:09:02

I would heartily recommend the speedo swim jackets

They aren't bulky like the ones with the floats in

When ours were 3-4 we just drilled it into them that there was no swimming allowed without them

Only ever found them in the US though

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