Use caution and common sense in and around the pool to prevent injuries that can result from slipping on wet surfaces or hitting the bottom of the pool.
- Develop a safety action plan for the facility and have the plan visibly posted.
- Inform swimmers and spectators of the location of the first aid room and trainers who can help in case of an emergency.
- Make sure coaches are certified in CPR and first aid.
- Keep pool decks and other floors as dry as possible. Use signs to warn people of areas of potential danger.
- Wear sunscreen when swimming outdoors.
- Prevent insect and bee stings by making sure trash cans have lids and are placed away from high traffic areas.
- Learn to dive off the starting block properly. A coach can instruct you how to perfect a shallow entry into the pool to avoid head and neck injury.
- Perform racing starts in water four feet or deeper (according to USA swimming regulations) during practices and competitions. If a swimmer is learning a racing dive, the water depth should be greater than five feet.
- Secure starting blocks. A coach, lifeguard or swim meet official should be notified of wobbly or shaky blocks.
- Know the distance your teammates are swimming during a relay race. For example, know if he is swimming 50 or 100 yards. Don’t get up on the block too early and risk diving into the water on top of your teammate.
- Enter the water feet first during the warm-up period, unless the coach has designated a lane for practicing starts.
- Get out of the water if lightning is seen or thunder is heard—all activity should be suspended.
- Instruct everyone in the area to seek shelter in a safe place, preferably a sturdy building or a hard-topped vehicle with closed windows.
- Stay indoors 30 minutes following the last thunder or lightning.
Read more about staying healthy in the pool.