Myth: You need to wait 30 minutes after eating before swimming.
Fact: This is one of those messages that holds some truth. Eating a full meal directly before a lesson or training session is not recommended, particularly if it is an unhealthy choice (think fast food, greasy or fried food). This is because it can be uncomfortable to swim on a full stomach, and if a swimmer had eaten excessively, may lead to vomiting.
Instead, experts recommend a small, nutritious snack before swimming such as a piece of fruit, a muesli bar or sandwich. We personally have found that those swimmers who have felt unwell have consumed foods such as cakes. That means donuts and hot chips are a no-no! Following their swim, the Gatorade Sports Science Institute advises that swimmers ensure they eat a healthy meal rich in protein and carbohydrates to aid in recovery.
As always, water is always suggested for our squad swimmers before, during and after their session. It is sometimes easy to forget that swimming is a workout and students need to replace the fluids they have lost naturally through sweating.
Summer may have ended but the risk of drowning still remains. It is so important that parents remain vigilant with their children around water, not just at pools and beaches in the warmer months but around the home, especially the bath year-round. Ross Gage, Chief Executive of the Australian Swim Schools Association (ASSA) states that “drowning doesn’t discriminate, and as accidents can occur in nearly any body of water, in any season, and to almost anyone, maintaining skills is paramount.”
According to Royal Life Saving Australia, the majority of bathtub drowning deaths occur when there is an interruption to routine, such as the phone or doorbell ringing. Many parents and carers believe that they’ll only be gone for a minute - but this is enough time for a tragedy to occur.
In Australia, on average, 5 children under the age of five drown, and 47 are hospitalized due to bathtub drowning incidents each year. One in four hospitalizations results in permanent injury such as brain damage. As a parent or carer it is hard to be in all places at once and bath time poses one of the highest risk of drowning for babies and toddlers.
Like Col Jones Swim School, Royal Life Saving are committed to educating parents to reduce the number of drownings. They have developed the Keep Watch @ Bath Time program which informs parents and carers on ways to prevent their children from drowning through Active Supervision. It has four key elements:
Actions to help prevent your child drowning during bath time:
AUTHOR Josephine Moss, Swim School Coordinator.
Josephine and the team at Col Jones Swim School at Hurstville are committed to educating our families on water safety. To see more of the Royal Life Saving Society's bath time safety advice, please visit www.keepwatch.com.au.