Water Safety


Kids swimming at Gills YMCA

Do you know your child's true ability in the water? As a leader in drowning prevention, the YMCAs of Tampa Bay are teaming up with the Florida Blue Foundation and the YMCA of the Suncoast is joining forces with the Juvenile Welfare Board to teach FREE safety around water lessons. 

Annually, more than 3,500 children are treated in emergency rooms due to a drowning-related incident. Approximately 75% of child drownings occur because of a lapse in adult supervision of less than five minutes. Most drownings occur within 10-30 feet of safety.

You are your child's best lifeguard. However, without proper training or strong swimming ability, you could put yourself in danger. If possible, only swim in areas where a lifeguard is present. Use barriers around the pool and assign an adult to supervise pool activities even when a lifeguard is on duty. Never jump in to save someone. Throw out a flotation device or use a pole to reach a drowning child or adult.

We believe the ability to swim is a critical life skill for every child, teen and adult. In swim lessons, we use a variety of methods to help overcome fears, build confidence in the water and develop skills that last a lifetime. Qualified instructors meet kids and adults at their own level, help families set achievable goals and celebrate all successes.

We offer free swim testing to Y members under the age of 13 that include:

  • Treading water for one minute
  • Swimming the length of the pool
  • Floating on front and back
  • Jumping into water over their head

If your child is unable to complete this test, they should remain in the shallow end of the pool and within arm's length of an adult at all times.












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