To me, summer means being the first to dive into the cool waters at the local pool or having an evening swim at the local lake.
Both destinations provide some relief to the hot weather, but many might forget the dangers that go along with entering the water.
Check out the information below to make sure you keep your summer free of swimming mishaps.
Drowning is the second most common cause of death from injuries among children under the age of 14. Both at the pool and the lake, always watch your children closely. Even if life guards are on duty, they can’t possibly see everything. Drowning can happen so fast — sometimes in less than 2 minutes after a person’s head goes under the water. That leaves very little time for someone to help. Make sure your children wear safety vests and stay in the shallow water. Floating toys are fun, but can’t save lives.
In order to avoid trouble with the “Bademeister,” or life guard, adhere to some common sense rules. Obviously, there is no eating in or next to the pool as nobody wants to swim next to your leftovers. However, open air pools usually have designated picnic areas, and snacks can be bought at a kiosk.
Generally, signs will tell you about the do’s and don’ts, such as diving, eating or smoking, so just stick to those. Visitors are expected to shower before getting into the water, and some pools have admittance with a time limit. If you stay longer, you will have to pay extra.
Swimming in lakes, streams or ponds can be great summer fun, but make sure you are not entering private property or prohibited areas. The greatest danger of natural water is the unknown. Be cautious of strong currents or undertows, and always stay close to shore. Also, never jump into the water at unknown spots. If the water depth is low, this can lead to injuries.
The good news is that neither shark nor Portuguese man-of-wars will threaten your fun. But weeds and grass underwater might trap you. Don’t try to yank yourself free; this may get you even more tangled. Instead, shake and pull your arms and legs slowly to work yourself loose and call for help.
While at the pool or the lake, wearing flip-flop sandals, or other types of shoes, to protect your feet while walking around is a good idea no matter where you go. Wearing protective footwear will keep you from stepping onto broken glass or stinging insects. Bees can be found buzzing all over clover meadows, while wasps tend to be found around garbage cans. Move calmly or else they will get aggressive. If stung, remove the stinger and cool immediately. Suggestions range from using white vinegar to freshly cut onion halves to help with the swelling.
Finally, to beat the heat safely, stick to this rule: Never jump into cold water when your body is heated or you have drunk alcohol. The temperature shock can cause heart failure, so cool down slowly.
Check out these nearby swimming pools and lakes!
Swimming pools around Kaiserslautern
Landstuhl: www.neb-landstuhl.de/index.php/zeiten-und-preise (nature adventure park)
Otterberg: www.schwimmbadcheck.de/14310/Naturfreibad-Otterberg.html (Natural outdoor pool)
Rockenhausen: www.rockenhausen.de/vg_rockenhausen/Kultur,%20Tourismus%20&%20Freizeit/Natur-Erlebnisbad%20Rockenhausen/ (Natural outdoor pool)
St Ingbert: www.das-blau.de/index.php?id=103
Gelterswoog, Kaiserslautern: www.kaiserslautern.de/leben_in_kl/freizeit_und_sport/schwimmbaeder/00432/index.html?lang=de
Bostalsee, Nohfelden-Bosen: www.bostalsee.de/freizeitzentrum/
Bärenloch, Kindsbach: www.badegewaesser.rlp.de/servlet/is/1163/
Seehof Erlenbach: www.badegewaesser.rlp.de/servlet/is/1185/
Saarbacher Hammer: www.badegewaesser.rlp.de/servlet/is/1188/
Sägmühlweiher, Trippstadt: www.badegewaesser.rlp.de/servlet/is/1165/
Swimming lakes in the Wiesbaden area
This link is for five council run outdoor pools, www.stuttgart.de/kbb2/menu/187511
Suttgart – Sindelfingen: http://www.badezentrum.de/
Swimming lakes in the Stuttgart area