Summer is almost upon us and that can only mean one thing: paddling pool season is about to begin.
Over the next few sun-drenched months, kids across the country will don their swimming gear and take a refreshing dip in their back garden. For parents, that means a soggy lawn and an above average water bill – but both will be worth it when you see how much fun your little’uns are having.
To help kids enjoy a spot of aquatic fun, we’ve put together ten top tips for safe paddling pool play. Parents, take note.
Sorry to be gloomy, but did you know it’s possible for young children to drown in just a few inches of water? That’s why it’s important not to overfill your paddling pool. As a rule, go for 5-10cm of water – that should be plenty deep enough for your little ones to enjoy a good old splash.
It goes without saying that children should be supervised at all times whilst playing in a paddling pool. If you need to step away for a moment to answer the phone, switch the kettle on or check on dinner – be sure to take the kids out of the pool while you’re away.
You wouldn’t chuck your little ones in the bath without checking the temperature and the same goes for paddling pools. Water from outdoor taps is infamously chilly; add a kettle or two of boiling water to the pool and check the temperature is comfortable before setting your brood loose.
After an hour or so of splishing and splashing, the area around your paddling pool will be slippery as a fish. To prevent slips and trips, carry your kids out of the pool and dry them off where it’s safe. Alternatively, place a couple of towels near the pool to absorb excess sogginess and reduce slipperiness.
Doubtless your paddling pool won’t have seen much use since last summer, so give it a thorough clean before filling with H20. Cobwebs, bird droppings and other muck can collect on neglected pools, so hose yours off before and after each use.
Exposed to the elements, all sorts of debris can end up in your paddling pool – including sharp objects like thorns, twigs and litter. To avoid any nasty cuts and grazes, check the pool for sharp objects before filling and keep an eye out for rogue debris whilst the kids are larking.
Spot a puncture, tear or rip? You’ll need to fix the issue before letting your kids take the plunge. Empty paddling pools may look OK, but once filled with water they’re known to collapse or deflate – sending water and bathers sprawling across the lawn. Not good.
Many creepy-crawlies are attracted to paddling pools by the polarised light reflecting off the surface – as well as the pool’s bright colours. To prevent insects from ruining your little bathers day, spray your kids with bug spray and have your fly swat to hand.
Before your offspring venture forth for an afternoon dip, make sure they’re wearing the appropriate clothing. Waterproof swimming costumes are the normal attire for paddling, but if it’s cold – you may want to invest in a couple of child-sized wetsuits.
Whatever the activity, kids should wear sun cream when playing in the great outdoors. For paddling pool play, use a high factor, waterproof cream to prevent sunburn and reapply on a regular basis.
All set for the paddling pool season? We hope so. If you’re yet to buy a paddling pool, check out our range of paddling pools by clicking here or contact the All Round Fun team on 0800 043 0437.
Images sourced via Flickr Creative Commons. Credits: The JR Janes Archive, Patrick Mc Donald, just1snap and Joysaphine.