Category Archives: Aquatics

The Aquatic Art

Photos Courtesy of Camps Awosting and Chinqueka

Formerly, the term “aquatic” in organized camping meant teaching swimming and boating—period. Rowing, canoeing, and swim classifications included “beginner” and “advanced.” As an old-school Water Safety Instructor (WSI), I taught strokes like the inverted breaststroke and the double trudgeon crawl! Only one organization offered certification programs for WSIs, lifeguards, and boating instructors—the American Red Cross (ARC). Now, I don’t consider myself old, but the aquatic experience certainly has come a long way since I took my first swim class more … Continue reading

Posted in Aquatics, Camp Business, Departments, Mar/Apr 2014 | Leave a comment

On Guard

Be on your toes when supervising lifeguards. © Can Stock Photo Inc. / sonofakinger

The possibility of a missing swimmer or drowning victim is one of the most stomach-churning thoughts of a camp administrator. Consequently, it is vitally important for lifeguards to have the proper tools, training, and supervision. Here are some key factors to ensure that aquatic staff members provide a safe experience: Certified lifeguards should be trained on specific aquatic practices and equipment. Lifeguards have, indeed, been tested in emergency recognition and appropriate rescue techniques. However, the curriculum of various certifying organizations … Continue reading

Posted in Aquatics, Camp Business, Departments, Issues, March/April 2013 | 1 Comment

Just Add Water

One way to grow a camp aquatics staff is to implement a training course for older campers. Photo Courtesy Of Scott Paulus

Any camp director can hire staff members and then provide lifeguard-, boating-, and swim-instruction certification prior to the start of the summer season. However, there are certain drawbacks to staffing a waterfront with newly certified staff members. Questions may arise as to their preparedness: • Will they be ready to respond in an emergency? • Having had little actual practice, will they be able to successfully instruct the camp’s specific swimming/boating curriculum? • Will they be able to adapt to … Continue reading

Posted in Aquatics, Camp Business, Departments, Issues, March/April 2013 | Leave a comment

Wading Through Possibilities

Take time for proper planning before implementing a new waterfront activity. Photo Courtesy Of YMCA Camp Timbers

Your supervisor has just asked you to implement a new activity for the camp’s aquatic program. Excitement starts to build as you have been looking forward to this project for a long time. Will you bring in new sailboats? Maybe start a whitewater kayak program or possibly a sea kayak program? The camp down the road has a “blob,” and all of your campers are asking for one, too. Where do you begin? Brainstorming Phase Brainstorming is the most exciting … Continue reading

Posted in Aquatics, Camp Business, Departments, Issues, March/April 2013 | Leave a comment

Camp Aquatic Safety

Everyone loves being on the water! Make sure all of your staff are trained in aquatic safety. Photo Courtesy Of Falcon Camp

Whether the camp has a pool or a lake, most staff members will say the water is a favorite place for campers. After campers have been running around in the sun most of the day, the local watering hole is a great place to cool off. It’s also one of the most dangerous places on camp grounds. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, drowning remains the second-leading cause of death for children ages 1 to 14; … Continue reading

Posted in Aquatics, Camp Business, Departments, Issues, March/April 2013 | Leave a comment