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Aqua-Tots Drives Awareness on Dangers of Nationwide Lifeguard Shortage

World’s largest swim school franchise warns that children are more likely to enter water unsupervised, encourages families to only swim with an adult present and enroll in lessons

PHOENIX (June 30, 2022) – Aqua-Tots Swim Schools has been saving lives for over 30 years and is voicing its concern that the country’s current shortage of lifeguards is putting more lives in danger.

The American Lifeguard Association has stated that there is a critical shortage of lifeguards, with eight out of 10 of the country’s parks and recreation departments reporting they are short-staffed at their public beaches, pools and water parks. This decline in numbers of lifeguards is leading to more people – particularly children – going to unsupervised places to swim.

Aqua-Tots aims to raise awareness of this ongoing summer challenge by encouraging families to only swim when adult supervision is present and by offering swim lessons to combat child drowning statistics.

“The shortage of lifeguards is something that should be a real concern for all of us,” said Aqua-Tots CEO Craig Wright. “Statistics tell us that approximately 900 children die from unintentional drownings each year in the U.S. When you add in fewer lifeguards at pools and beaches across the country, it becomes even more concerning – especially during the summer when everyone is trying to stay cool in the water.”

A recent survey by the Center for Disease Control (CDC) reported that swimming is the fourth most popular form of exercise in the country. Children’s ability to swim doesn’t rank as high, however, with 64% of African-American, 45% of Hispanic and 40% of White children having little or no swimming ability.

Aqua-Tots encourages families to choose pools and beaches where lifeguards are present to swim this summer. Additionally, adult supervision by a designated Water Watcher in each family is vital for drowning prevention. A Water Watcher is an adult who agrees to watch children play or swim without any distractions for a set period.

Signing children up for swim lessons is also important as CDC studies show that participation in formal swim lessons reduce unintentional drownings by 88% in children ages one to four. Aqua-Tots offers swim lessons for children of all ages, including those as early as four months old.

Aqua-Tots currently has 125 locations worldwide, including 22 international locations, teaching five million swim lessons a year. Every swim instructor has completed more than 40 hours of intensive in-water and classroom training and has their CPR certification.

The Aqua-Tots Swim Journey is comprised of eight levels of comprehensive curriculum that is tried, true and trusted all over the world. Each level is designed to build upon the next, taking each child on a journey toward becoming a safe and confident swimmer for life.

Aqua-Tots offers swim lessons for children as young as four months all the way through 12 years old. Children can participate in private lessons or small group classes to help ensure a safe environment for proper swim instruction.