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Let’s Talk About Stupid Pool Rules #thesearethedays #stupidpoolrules #thumbsdown

The kids and I recently spent some time with my cousins in Northern Alberta. Because we had a few errands to run in Edmonton on one of the days, we decided to find an outdoor pool and make a day of it. ย So we (my cousin lol) googled *fun outdoor pools* – and the first to come up was Oliver Outdoor Pool.

Check out this photo!

Now, I don’t know about you but we thought this pool looked awesome! The blow up*obstacle course* is what really caught our eye. Something different but also something we were sure all of our kids would enjoy.

My cousin, Kari and I drove together and met up with Radelle after our errands. Radelle arrived at the pool first with her 4 kids, 6 and under. She asked about the inflatable obstacle course and was told they no longer have it. Not their fault, as it was in for repairs, but still a bummer. Apparently it was too loud and swimmers were unable to hear the lifeguards over it.

The cashier also mentioned that she might catch some grief for having 4 kids under 6 in her care, so she was sure to stay in one corner of the shallow end with them until we arrived. Each of her kids was wearing a life jacket and, in fact, her two youngest had life jackets AND water wings (to keep their faces more above the water). They were well protected…plus, she was RIGHT there. But even still a lifeguard came over to check in on the situation, but left it alone once she learned that she had two other adults coming as well.

We arrived and got the kids situated and ready for some fun. HA!

The pool is seriously just a rectangle, with a slide in the deep end (plus a kid one in the shallow end) and the photo makes it look way bigger than it is. I quickly took my kids to the deep end so they could enjoy the slide. Asย per the pool rules, with Jonah being 6, it is required that he be within my arms reach. I’m totally fine with that, and although he can swim decently well – certainly from the slide to the pool edge – I still prefer to be close enough to keep an eye on him.

About the third time down the slide, he was asked to get off by the lifeguard. {insert sobbing child}

His day was officially ruined in that moment.

The lifeguard explained to me that he could not be in the deep end unless he passed the swim test. In order to be in the deep end, each swimmer must swim from one end of the pool to the other in the marked off lane on the side. They can do this test with or without a life jacket, but obviously if they do it with, it means they must have a life jacket on in the deep end. I was irritated by this test, but tried to be supportive of the rules so I explained to Jonah that he could do the test. Which he and his cousin, R, both did with life jackets.

The testing lifeguard then proceeded to take a big black permanent marker and write a large L on their arm with a 6 below, to indicate the need for them to have life jackets…and that they are 6 years old. sigh

Can someone please explain to me in what circumstance a child would ever need to swim the entire LENGTH of a pool to save themselves?

Okay, so whatever. I go back to the deep end with Jonah and R, because despite the life jackets, they still need an adult in the deep end. (I would have gone anyway for the record). They were having fun going down the slide and Radelle decided she wanted to come and watch. Her second son had an appointment and was with his dad, so she just had the two younger kids….life jackets AND water wings, remember?

The lifeguard tells her the girls can’t be in the deep end unless they, too pass the swim test. They are 2 and 3.

They had life jackets and water wings on….and she was HOLDING them.

Seriously.

So if she ever wanted to come on her own, well she couldn’t. Their 3:1 child to adult ratio (for kids 6 and under) automatically prevents her from this…until her oldest turns 7 later this year at least.

BUT, even with a life jacket on he can’t be in the deep end without an adult…but she can’t go to the deep end with him because the other kids are not allowed there until they have passed the swim test.

Here’s the thing…If I am a parent and am up on the tanning deck (their tanning deck is beautiful!), then have every possible rule you want to have to keep those kids safe. As parents, we should not be putting our kids in situations where lifeguards will have to save them. I don’t want that for my kids or for the lifeguard, nevermind me. But when I am WITH my kids….swimming WITH them….watching them go down the slide, etc….do you think you could ease up a little?

They had SO many lifeguards on duty, and switched up their station in regular intervals….but we had to wonder just a little bit…

WHAT IS THEIR JOB EXACTLY?

I’m all for rules and keeping everyone, especially children safe. BUT WE WERE RIGHT THERE!

UGH! Clearly I am still irritated by it….such a waste of $15, an hour (it’s all we stayed), and for Radelle specifically, who drove into Edmonton JUST for this, a waste of 2 hours of driving time. At the very least, it’s not a pool to go to if you have young kids.

Stupid. Pool. Rules.

 

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