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Swimming and kids, can you do this??

(24 Posts)
TurnItAround Tue 03-Jul-07 21:18:52

Me and my friend have been discussing weight loss for summer and she said she goes swimming around 3 times a week, she's a single parent and works so I asked how she managed to fit it in and so she said she takes the kids with her after school.

I said "cant imagine you get much actual swimming in then?" so she replied "no the kids are fine playing in the kids (kids) pool while I do a few lengths".

Her kids are 8 and 6 and neither of them can swim although they're both confident in the water. She says there are "floaties" around, body boards and they have arm bands on, lots of parents in there and a life guard and the kids can touch the floor easily so she thinks they're fine playing on their own for a bit while she goes into the big pool and swims up and down occasionaly checking on them!

She wants me to start going with her with my kids but am unsure at the way she does things, am I being over-protective?

pyjamaqueen Tue 03-Jul-07 21:22:09

In our local pool you can send 8 year olds in without an adult. Obviously all children are different, but if the children are confident swimmers and you're nearby and there's a lifeguard, why not?

TurnItAround Tue 03-Jul-07 21:24:27

They can't swim! she said they've just learnt how to "float" but only with armbands but her 6 year old takes his off whenever he gets the chance. The water in the kids pool is just past an adults knees at the deep end so I don't suppose theres much chance of anything happening, it just seems a bit "risky"

tortoise Tue 03-Jul-07 21:26:01

Why take them after school when she could go when they are at school?
Our pool you have to have 1:2 ratio for under 8's. After that, and if they were confident i would probably try it out.

CountTo10 Tue 03-Jul-07 21:26:11

I think it differs from pool to pool. In our local one under 8's are not allowed to swim unaccompanied. Like PJQ says though, if they're strong swimmers and theirs lifeguards about. Personal choice I think.

SconesandMajesticSandwiches Tue 03-Jul-07 21:26:43

At our pool under 6's have to be supervised at all times. I certainly wouldn't do it.

cylonbabe Tue 03-Jul-07 21:27:54

yes you are being overprotective.
a kids pool is rarely more than a glorified bathtub. and at 6 and 8 the water probly only comes to their thighs wehn standing.

TurnItAround Tue 03-Jul-07 21:29:13

she cant go during school as she works.

I think I'll leave it tbh, I'd be too frightened that something happened whilst I was at the other end of the pool.

RosaLuxembourg Tue 03-Jul-07 21:29:19

Our pool under-eights are not allowed in unaccompanied. DD1 is nine and fine to go off and do her own thing while I stay in the baby pool with DD3. DD2 is seven but will wait till she has her 50metre badge before I let her wander off alone - will be any time soon.
Non-swimming children no, and I think your friend is irresponsible. Wouldn't go with her if I were you because you are obviously uncomfortable about the situation so will be stressed anyway.

NotQuiteCockney Tue 03-Jul-07 21:30:17

Our pools make sure you're actually with your kids. I've managed a bit of swimming with DS1 (5), but I've always been within a few feet of him, and able to see him.

MorocconOil Tue 03-Jul-07 21:30:51

The 8 year old is probably ok , but the 6 year old could be at risk. I would worry some older kids might play roughly with them if there's not an adult supervising. Children can get stuck and then panic under those big floaty things. I think you are right to feel uncomfortable about it. Water can be so dangerous.

christywhisty Tue 03-Jul-07 21:59:54

My 2 could swim by the ages of 6 and 8 (they had lessons from babies) but I wouldn't have left them on their own.
There is no way I would have left 2 non swimmers by themselves even at that age.
It use to annoy when there were non swimmers in the pool and their parents just sat on the side chatting fully clothed not even watching them.

macdoodle Tue 03-Jul-07 22:34:35

Blimey can't swim ...why not my 5 year old is in level 5 has been able to swim more or less since 3.....COI grew up in South Africa pools every where kids had to swim before walking or risk of drowning high....so prob a bit paranoid..
So saying I wouldn't let her swim alone whilst I was doing lengths (nor would our local pool) and she is confident capable swimmer ..

Reallytired Wed 04-Jul-07 13:30:04

it seems a pity that she can't pay for her kids to have swimming lessons in the little pool and then go off for a swim while they have their lesson. The difference between the cost of entry into the swimming pool and the cost of a swimming is just couple of pounds. The children would be a lot safer than left unsupervised. They would also gain a good life skill.

Its what I do with my son. I know my five year old son is safe because he is with the swimming instructor and I can enjoy a swim on my own.

TurnItAround Wed 04-Jul-07 15:54:17

That would be ideal but the kids pool is so small it's not really big enough to actually swim in, or deep enough as the kids just put their feet down constantly rather than learn to float so the lessons take place in the big pool.

I suggested swimming lessons to her but she thinks they're too expensive (£40 every 6 weeks or something) and her youngest did them for a while and the instructor kept leaving him clinging to the side whilst she spent more time with the better swimmers.

kslatts Wed 04-Jul-07 16:39:46

If you go with her, could you stay with the kids while she swims and then swap. I do that with a friend and it works quite well.

jackie2kids Wed 04-Jul-07 16:41:54

I'd say they'd be fine in the kids pool as long as not out of their depth.

lucyellensmum Wed 04-Jul-07 16:55:05

remember that you can drown in a ridiculously small amount of water.

Why dont you suggest that you both go to the pool, take turns to look after the children in the little pool and go off and do lengths. That way the children are supervised adn you both get to swim. I wouldnt trust that the lifegaurds could see if there were a problem, 95% would be ok but they dont have eyes in back of head and the pools can be really busy.

lucyellensmum Wed 04-Jul-07 16:57:26

kslatts, i stole your advice

SoupDragon Wed 04-Jul-07 16:57:35

I wouldn't send a 6 year old non-swimmer into any pool alone!!

Reallytired Wed 04-Jul-07 18:20:44

I don't think that any child under 8 should be left unsupervised however good at swimming they are.

All you need is for them to do something a bit silly like dive into shallow water, knock themselves unconcious and drown. Its not fair to rely on the life guard who has to watch a lot of people.

Are there any other other swimming pools near your friend?

Reallytired Wed 04-Jul-07 18:20:45

I don't think that any child under 8 should be left unsupervised however good at swimming they are.

All you need is for them to do something a bit silly like dive into shallow water, knock themselves unconcious and drown. Its not fair to rely on the life guard who has to watch a lot of people.

Are there any other other swimming pools near your friend?

JoMa Wed 04-Jul-07 18:23:42

i went with ds1 yesterday, i did widths in the leisure pool with him playing next to where i was swimming, it was deep enough to swim but he could stand up too, and i could see him at all times, no way would i have left him in a different pool.

Hulababy Wed 04-Jul-07 18:33:11

I wouldn't leave any non swimmung children in a swimming pool by themselves, unsupervised. 6 year old is definitely of an age where supervision is required regardless. A confiden swimming 8 year old would be fine properly, not none that has only just learnt to "float" with an aid.

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