To think that 8 is a bit of a low cut-off age for paddling pools.

(38 Posts)

My DS is 9, and he loves park paddling pools/splashzones. Always has done. I have noticed a few signs and mentions on websites that suggest over-8s shouldn't be using them which (particularly on hot days) seems a bit mean. I can understand over-12s being frowned on, but a 9 year old is still a kid and, as long as he's careful not to barge into or scare the little ones, he's not doing any harm.

HeySoulSister Fri 01-Aug-14 11:17:53

12 is still a kid too...

Madrigals Fri 01-Aug-14 11:24:33

Ours is open to all ages - much nicer smile I like dipping my feet too!

scaevola Fri 01-Aug-14 11:30:13

Older DC are to younger ones. They're bigger and faster and their very presence does change what play in a particular place is like.

So you either have to find a place which goes up to 11 (one nearby us does), one at has no restrictions, or give up.

BTW, the same goes for letteing children under age limit into adventure playgrounds. Even if they "love climbing". Their presence changes it for the bigger DC.

There should be places for children of all ages to play, but that's not the same as having all places for any age.

CarbeDiem Fri 01-Aug-14 11:33:08

We don't have these in the arctic North East but if we did I'D like to go in.
Aw I find 8 or over a bit young to be banned from using one. I think it's fine, like you say - so long as he's aware of the little ones around him then YANBU.

wintertimeisfun Fri 01-Aug-14 11:36:36

who says children over ie 8 are too old? probably same parents who check on the sugar content on cereals. i am nearly 50 and if it is hot i would be more than hapy to go in a paddling pool. i bought one a few weeks ago (cheap at a car boot) and have had GREAT fun in it. dd had a friend over yesterday (both 11). it made me smile being inside hearing them laughing having such fun. some people are real controlling miserable sods. glad i didn't have a parents like that

wintertimeisfun Fri 01-Aug-14 11:38:44

oh, rethink. was op talking about PUBLIC paddling pools or privately owned garden ones? my apologies if op was talking about public ones (although i may be tempted to dip my toes in if i was in a park but certainly not run through it screaming....)

BackforGood Fri 01-Aug-14 11:47:38

There are places that have paddling pools open to the public, in parks ??? shock
How have we missed out on these?

RiverTam Fri 01-Aug-14 11:55:59

I suppose if there have been a lot of instances of big kids knocking little kids over then they've had to make this rule. I know you're saying your DS will be careful not to barge etc, but realistically, they're all going to be overexcited and try as you might, it could easily happen.

I still think it's a bit daft, btw, just trying to work out the thinking on this.

Fountains outside Somerset House yesterday had kids of all ages weaving around each other, but that is a huge open space.

Sirzy Fri 01-Aug-14 12:01:27

I think is nice to have somewhere smaller children can play without bigger ones knocking them over tbh

bruffin Fri 01-Aug-14 12:41:24

There are fountains at the Olympic park at Stratford and there were all ages running around in them including adults.

RiverTam Fri 01-Aug-14 12:47:00

ooh, are there? We're going next week <makes note to pack swimming cossie and a towel>.

zazzie Fri 01-Aug-14 13:00:08

I go by what is suitable for my son as his sn's mean many things meant for his age are not suitable or he has no interest in them. He is closely supervised.

bruffin Fri 01-Aug-14 14:45:59

Rivertam
There is also the tumbling bay park play area by the Timber Lodge which has sand and water

Its on the right as you walk towards the Velopark.

I was sad the my dcs are now late teens and they didnt have it when they were younger. Although my DS 18 sneakily had a go on the rolling log.

As yet, no one has chased us out of a pool and I have seen children who appear to be 9 or 10 using them too. TBH if a pool is full of toddlers I would probably suggest to DS that we wait, or go elsewhere. I am going to work (gently) on steering DS more in the direction of playing in the river on hot days, now he's getting bigger.

Pyjamaramadrama Fri 01-Aug-14 15:10:00

I think it's too low yes. 8 is still very young.

We don't have any paddling pools/splash areas by us, but when it was hot last week we were travelling to one, there were kids of all ages and even a few parents in there. No problems. Anyway easy solution is to create a little toddler area.

I find that so many places are just not friendly towards older children all of the parks by me are completely useless for over the age of 6-7. It makes me really hmm and angry

Even teenager want to cool down and have a splash in the hot weather.

Pyjamaramadrama Fri 01-Aug-14 15:12:46

Round here they got rid of any remotely decent play equipment/paddling pools years ago in a big health and safety sweep. Yet they've left huge duck ponds open without being fenced off.

Our local council is useless.

petalunicorn Fri 01-Aug-14 16:17:31

Yes I think it is low, probably should be 11 however I also think that if somewhere is busy mixed age groups don't work well. Ideal would be a little kids (under 4) end and a big kids end (over 4).

We went to a pond dipping activity today that was advertised as being 4+ although anyone passing could join in. Loads of people were pushing very small kids forward to have a turn and then hovering behind them to make sure they did not fall in when there were not enough nets to go round and there was not enough room on the bank. Tbh I probably would have pushed my pfb forward to do something like that when he was too small although I hope I wouldn't have shot older kids evils and kept telling them to be careful and made passive aggressive comments about taking turns like a lot of the mums did. Ditto little kids in the adventure playground.

Not sure what the answer is tbh. Yes big kids should be careful and ime the vast majority are but little kids (and their helicoptoring parents) shouldn't be in there.

mygrandchildrenrock Fri 01-Aug-14 16:29:03

We live on the East Coast and have an open air paddling pool with dragon shower jets and other fun stuff.
The only thing that has changed over the years is the big sign saying everyone has to be 'decently clad' and babies must wear swim nappies. 13 yrs ago I was there with my then 2 yr old who was naked and a council workman said she ought to be 'decently clad' and I said she was! I said she was 2 yrs old and being naked was perfectly decent. The pool is right next to the beach and many little children are still naked on the beach.

ErrolTheDragon Fri 01-Aug-14 16:47:26

It seems like a very young cut-off to me, if there aren't also facilities for older kids.

Do take him to the river - any water is fun but 'real' water moreso - but it's not so easy for parents with several kids who may need somewhere safer for the little 'uns but still fun for the bigger ones.

londonrach Fri 01-Aug-14 16:52:59

Patents in law are enjoying a paddling pool at the moment at the age of late 60s and early 70s. 8 too young for a cut off. I member being 12 and still enjoying it. Can't you ask council to explain why so young a cut off....

ElephantsNeverForgive Fri 01-Aug-14 17:09:00

Age limits on play equipment (bar because a child is actually big enough to break it) are often a grade A pain in the butt.

If you have two DCs and one parent, you often have very little choice, but to ignore them.

Clearly big sister will want to cool off too, or little sister follow her into the big ball pool.

What is required isn't age limits, it's good manners and common sense.

If your toddler is causing a huge queue on the big slide remove them. If your ten your old twins are having a massive splashy water fight amongst the five year olds, tell them to stop.

DD1 never stayed in the toddler area of any soft play, but she didn't care if the bigger kids sent her flying. She reappeared with a beautiful black eye once. No tears, she hadn't even noticed.

Likewise both of them are fish and totally happy to take their turn with the much older boys jumping off the pool bridge. They looked out for themselves and knew to swim clear politely and quickly.

The trouble starts when older or younger children take each other's space without respecting those who have most right to be there.

Teens, sitting on swings or playing football in the play area, when there is a pitch and benches, are my particular bug bear. Likewise if a tiny child took their scooter into the skate park and made everyone stand about that would be out of order.

Fixitagaintomorrow Fri 01-Aug-14 17:26:29

I would say it sounds about right. I have a smaller child and last time we were at our local paddling pool there was a group of boys aged 8-10 who shouldn't have been in there that were splashing water in the faces of the smaller children which really upset dd. Obviously I'm not saying your ds would do anything like that but I get quite nervous when dd plays in any kind of play area for small children and there are older children in there. This is due to a lot of incidents in soft play areas. It would be nice if parks could put two pools in for different age groups.

ErrolTheDragon Fri 01-Aug-14 23:11:47

>What is required isn't age limits, it's good manners and common sense

Yes. I was really touched when DD was small and bigger kids treated her with kind consideration - and this was far more the norm than the exception. I can still remember her first go on the Big Slide in the local playground (which weirdly looks about half the size now as it did to me then) - I was quite nervous about her wanting to go up it but then the 'big girl' behind shepherded her up and helped her at the top.

Having age limits and segregated areas may be required for some sorts of equpment, but a paddling pool seems more like the sort of thing where mutual enjoyment should be possible.

MrsWinnibago Fri 01-Aug-14 23:14:44

back we have one near us...it's fed by sprinkler things and filtered so it doesn't get dirty.It's ace! No rules about ages though most kids are under 10 in there and the older ones seem to pick their way about almost gingerly...while the toddlers scream and run under the spray.

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