|Type of paper:||Research paper|
|Categories:||School Sport Healthcare|
Swimming and swimming lessons are considered part of the norm of growing up in middle-class American societies. Most children learn to swim from their neighborhood's YMCA, summer camps or swimming programs in the park and recreation departments. In studies of activity preference, most adolescents consistently identify swimming as a top favorite. At the backdrop of these preferences are many adolescents who do not know how to swim. The assertion is evidenced by increasing cases of swimming in Bridgeport. Though many may self-report swimming, this does not necessarily mean swimming. Instead, it could translate to standing or playing in the water. This heightens the risk of drowning. Adolescent's forms part of the population that is the most risk for both fatal and nonfatal drowning.
Apart from a lack of knowledge in swimming, other issues include lack of swimming pools, lack of adequate supervision, and risky behaviors among adolescents. To address these challenges funding for the projects is crucial. Cost for swimming classes needs to be addressed as families are middle-income families. Commitments to the fees should address issues of fairness and equality if some will not be subjected to low fees. This research paper seeks to answer questions as well as issues of concern, that will help families in Bridgeport get funding for swimming classes.
The city of Bridgeport is responsible for licensing swimming pools and enhancing standards of these pools. The city's website exempts prefabricated pools that are less than 24 inches deep from requiring a permit. Most institutions in Bridgeport have swimming pools and offer swimming programs. These range from schools, restaurants, churches and recreation facilities. One such institution is the Cardinal Shehan Center which offers weeklong swimming camps for adolescents and children.
Among the high profile cases of drowning in Bridgeport include the drowning of a 2-year old in a backyard pool in Charron Street in 2018. O'Neil and Burgeson reported that family members gave an estimate of 20 to I hour since the child missing (They also note that the 20 to that 30 people at the scene were ranged from 4-17-year-olds appeared confused (O'Neil and Burgeson 17). This shows that adolescents are unaware of safety procedure on drowning cases or how to handle such scenarios. The authors also report the case of 5-year old Brianna who similarly drowned in (O'Neil and Burgeson 18). Her brother who was seven years old could not help her sister and had to witness her drowning. The incident happened in Waterbury, Bridgeport. It thus stands to reason that most of the adolescents in Bridgeport do not know how to swim.
Though the City of Bridgeport has not published statistic regarding those who know how to swim, statistics from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported that there were 356 annual average deaths in the US between 2012 and 2014 of which 77 percent involved children younger than the age of 5. Fatal drowning involved children under the age of 5 and is the leading cause of unintentional death for children aged 1 to 4.
Children are ready to swim at any age at any pool that is warm and properly maintained. However, admission is subject to management's admission policy. Warmth is essential as young babies get cold quickly and easily. For babies under three months of age and weighing no more than 5.5 kilos, the recommended temperature of the water should be at least 32 degrees Celsius (Brenner et al. 203).
Though drowning is thought to be violent with victims splashing calls for help, it is different in that it is characterized by being quiet and undramatic accidental events (Roberts). Signs that a person is drowning include hyperventilating and gasping. The victim is seen gasping for air as they swallow huge amounts of water. Children might be in a horizontal face-down position unable to keep the mouth open about the water surface. In some instances, a drowning person may lift their arms while pressing down to lift their mouth out of water. The most important indicator is that they look up at the sky, shore, pool deck or the dock. If shouted at, they give no response returning a blank stare. All efforts by a drowning person are dedicated to strictly getting air.
The feet first is safer than head first entry as it allows the feet to feel for unseen obstacles below the surface (Cortes et al., 28). This is especially so when the water has debris floating on it. Several techniques for feet first exist. This include walk/wade, slide entry, safety step, compact jump, and accidental fall. The walking technique requires the swimmer to enter the water by walking or sliding their feet along the bottom while getting progressively deeper. The sliding entry is used when the depth of the waters is unknown; hence one enters from the edge using their upper body to slowly lower into the water with feet for water. The safety step technique is used in pools of known depth and conditions. To use the safety step, one should, from a standing position extend one leg some distance, slightly bending their knees then lean forward and extend arms sideways. Compact jump is entry calls for heights greater than one meter into known depths.
If one visits the swimming for the first time, he or she should note whether there is the presence of a lifeguard or a supervisor regardless of whether they know how to swim. One should know both the shallow end and the deep ends and if possible the actual depth. Moreover, note whey should not where the deep end begins to dip. Most swimming pools or spots have warning signs; these should be noted and were not understood; one should clarify. The surroundings of the pool are very important as they can tell whether the pool is well maintained. One should check out for uneven or slippery tiles in or around the pool. The pools should have showers around to clean before and after swimming sessions.
In an interview with Keith Montana who doubles up as a lifeguard and a swim instructor, she acknowledges that drowning incidents are on the rise in Bridgeport. She asserts that adolescents are the ones affected. She attributes the cases to a lack of skill and the huge fees charged by instructors. She charges a fee of $35-$50 for a 30-minute lesson and $55-$80 for a 60-minute lesson. She, however, agrees that the fee is burdensome especially for lower middle-income families. Montana says that most people are not responsible when they visit swimming for the first time. She particularly notes that swimmers coming with babies along should remember to enquire the presence of baby pools and that lifeguards are generally busy and may not necessarily keep a check on each child around. Those attending swimming for the first time should avoid drinking alcohol as it can impair their judgment. Additionally, she advises swimming with others.
It is evident that cases of drowning are on the rise in Bridgeport. The funding will be essential for rolling out swimming lessons at no fee or a subsidized fee. The lessons will be essential at minimizing the risk of drowning among adolescents. This assertion is confirmed by Brenner et al. whose research concluded that participation in formal swimming lessons had reduced the risk of drowning by as much as 88 percent among children aged 1 to 4 years (209). Their study was focused on children aged 1 to 19 years and was conducted in states of Maryland and North Carolina, one county in Texas, one county in New York and 14 counties in Florida. In an article by Brenner et al. the authors noted that the strategy to increase swimming ability (through swimming lessons) in the population was attractive since it would decrease the drowning risks on several occasions and situations across all age groups.
Disabled teens just like normal teens have a preference for swimming. The families in Bridgeport with disabled children should not be left out. Additionally, disabled kids left behind by their siblings would develop the behavioral problem as they feel left out or stigmatized for their disability. Swimming can also be used by disabled kids to improve their physical activeness as well as interaction with peers. Kumara et al. noted that hydrotherapy intervention was effective in improving social interaction among adolescents aged between 3 to 12 years (99). The study by Kumara et al. investigated the effect of hydrotherapy on social interaction and behaviors of children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The argument is supported by Balan whose study designed swimming lesson for the disabled by arguing it offers many advantages (1682). The study notes that swimming is essential for disabled adolescents so as they can maintain their quality of life and help them in their social integration (Balan, 1682).
The swimming lessons in Bridgeport will involve safety programs geared at minimizing avoidable accident that could lead to drowning. The programs will teach proper use of lifejackets and pool safety equipment. In anticipation of cases where swimmers will experience drowning cases, the programs will teach the students on safe-monitoring best practices and how to respond to an emergency. The response to the emergency lesson will teach Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation. It is expected that safety programs will reduce cases of drowning significantly.
The targeted families in this project are the middle class. Most of these families are characterized by parents having multiple jobs to support their family and their needs. The families are concerned with the amount of fee and the fairness of the lessons. The programs once rolled out, they will be free or subsidized for all children. Those who might feel they deserve more may opt for private lessons. Tyler argues that drowning is a significant cause of injury-related deaths in low and middle-income families (5). It thus follows that the need for funding of swimming lessons is justified and called for in Bridgeport.
In conclusion, the paper has argued the need for funding swimming lessons in Bridgeport. Those directing the funding should address the need for swimming classes, the benefit to the disabled, and the safety programs associated with the lessons. The funding for the swimming lesson will cover the fees. The program as a whole will be essential in curbing drowning cases in Bridgeport.
Balan, Valeria. "Aspects of the Swimming Lesson Design at Disabled Children." Procedia - Social and Behavioral Sciences, vol. 197, 2015, pp. 1679-1683.
Brenner, R. A., et al. "Association Between Swimming Lessons and Drowning in Childhood." Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, vol. 163, no. 3, 2009, p. 203, doi:10.1001/archpediatrics.2008.563.
Cortes, L. M., et al. "Recommendations for Water Safety and Drowning Prevention for Travelers." Journal of Travel Medicine, vol. 13, no. 1, 2006, pp. 21-34, doi:10.1111/j.1708-8305.2006.00002.x.
Kumar, Saravana, et al. "The effectiveness of hydrotherapy in the treatment of social and behavioral aspects of children with autism spectrum disorders: a systematic review." Journal of Multidisciplinary Healthcare, 2014, p. 93.
Montana, K. (2019). Swimming in Bridgeport [In person]. Bridgeport.
O'Neil, T., and J. Burgeson. "Details emerge about Bridgeport drowning death." 17 Jan. 2018, www.ctpost.com/local/article/Details-emerge-about-Bridgeport-drowning-death-13164367.php.
Roberts, Catherine. "How to Spot the Real Signs of Drowning." Consumer Reports, 27 June 2018, www.consumerreports.org/outdoor-safety/how-to-spot-the-signs-of-drowning/.
Tyler, M., et al. "The epidemiology of drowning in low- and middle-income countries: a systematic review." US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health, vol. 17, no. 1, 2018, p. 413, PubMed. doi:10.1186/s12889-017-4239-2.
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