Teach children how to SWIM SAFE in open water.
As with all aspects of life parental example is crucial in teaching life's lessons. Wild Swimming is good for children.
Learn to swim well
Even good swimmers are not drownproof. Children who cannot swim well should wear a life jacket. Non swimmers, poor and intermediate swimmers should be within arms reach of a responsible adult at all times whilst swimming, even if a swimming pool or beach has lifeguards.
Children are naturally drawn to water, but they often don't see danger. The following advice is provided so that adults can help their children avoid the risks that swimming can pose and keep safe whilst having fun in the water.
Don't swim alone
Take parents and friends with you. It is best to swim at well used places rather than secret swimming spots.
Clean and Clear?
Stay away from weeds (the circular motions of swimming can lead to entanglement).
In and Out
Think about where you will get in and out.
If there is a current or tide and you get swept along where you will get out then? (It can be great fun to swim along with the current; the beach at Aberdovey for example has a very strong cross current but it is still safe for swimming on the main beach).
Don't swim out too far!
Depth: is the water too deep or too shallow?
The depth of water in swimming pools varies; you should never jump or dive in unless you have checked how deep it is, the same is true in open water. Make sure the landing area is deep enough and free of obstructions.
Be careful not to jump onto someone already in the water by mistake.
If the water is likely to be very deep and you are not a competent swimmer, wear a life jacket.
Temperature: get in slowly and let your body adjust
Many lidos have unheated water and on a hot summers day the temptation to strip off and jump in can be overwhelming. The shock of the cold water, can though, be dangerous. Get in slowly and let your body get used to the cool water. The same is true for open water or wild swimming.
Don't stay in cold water for too long. Get out after a short time and warm up or wear a wet suit.
Reader's responsibility: Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information presented here, anyone who decides to swim in open water should remember that this is not entirely without risk. Neither the author nor the publishers will be held legally or financially responsible for any accident, injury, loss or inconvenience sustained as a result of the information or advice contained herein.