Largest swimming lesson in Southwest Florida focuses on safety for all ages

Reporter: Jolena Esperto Writer: Carolina Guzman
Published: Updated:

The world’s largest swimming lesson took place in Southwest Florida, launched by the World Waterpark Association for a global Drowning Prevention event.

On Thursday, at Sunsplash in Cape Coral, the crowded swimming lesson focused on safety for all ages.

Kids were seen with their life vests and floaties in the water, and for Elanya and Amelia, it’s more than just a lesson.

“You can only open your eyes underwater if you have goggles on… we’re going to go down the lazy river,” said Elayna.

“I can swim on my back. I learned that today. It’s really fun,” said Amelia.

This is the 14th year for the global Drowning Prevention event started by the World Waterpark Association, and Sunsplash is one of many water parks offering a free swim lesson all over the world on June 20.

“It’s one of my favorite days of the year to get all the kids in here and see how excited they are to learn a new skill, to see how excited they are to be really safe,” said Hollie Reed, Activities Director at Sunsplash.

“Just important for kids to be comfortable in the water and to know what to do in the water so they don’t freak out and learn how to swim. This is all to raise awareness about drowning, and the fact that swimming is a vital life-saving skill every child should learn,” said Lexie Gerant, Elayna’s mom.

The American Academy of Pediatrics shows the risk of drowning can be reduced by 88% if children participate in formal swimming lessons between the ages of 1 and 4 years old.

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