International Learn to Swim Day™
With the launch of its International Learn to Swim Day™ program approaching on Saturday, May 18, Swimways Corp., a subsidiary of Spin Master (TSX: TOY; www.spinmaster.com) is encouraging parents and caregivers to take steps to ensure their kids learn to swim not only for fun, but for their safety. Held on the third Saturday of May each year, Swimways founded its National Learn to Swim Day™ program in 2012. This year, Swimways has expanded its program internationally and teamed up with the six heroic PAW Patrol™ pups to convey the importance, benefits and fun of learning to swim to kids around the world.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, drowning is the leading cause of unintentional death for children ages one to four, and the second-leading cause for children under 14. Furthermore, according to research conducted by the USA Swimming Foundation, 64% of African-American, 45% of Hispanic/Latino, and 40% of Caucasian children have little to no swimming ability.
“While swimming is an important life skill for kids to learn, it’s also a fun activity for families to enjoy together,” said Monica Jones, Vice President of Marketing, Swimways Corp. “Swimways is passionate about making sure kids are safer in and around the water, and believes the pool should be a special place where families and friends can connect and relax.”
For the past three years, Swimways has partnered with the USA Swimming Foundation, the philanthropic arm of the national sports governing body, whose mission is to save lives and build champions – in the pool and life. Elizabeth Beisel, two-time Olympic medalist and USA Swimming Foundation Ambassador is serving as the spokesperson for Swimways’ International Learn to Swim Day™ program this year.
“One of the most special, lifesaving gifts a parent can give their child is teaching them how to swim,” said Elizabeth Beisel. “With the summer swimming season quickly approaching, it’s vital to spread the message about the importance and benefits of learning to swim.”
The benefits of learning to swim don’t stop with fun and safety. According to a national survey commissioned by Swimways¹, more than 4 out of 5 parents understand that learning to swim by age 5 increases a child’s self-confidence, but 88% of parents are unaware that it can also aid in the development of mathematical skills. In addition, only 14% understand it can help develop oral expression, and less than half understand that it can boost children’s social skills.
To celebrate Swimways’ International Learn to Swim Day™ events, Beisel recommends these activities for parents and caregivers:
- Get educated with the best resources available:
o For learn to swim and water safety resources, visitwww.teachmetoswim.com
o To find swim lessons in your area, parents and caregivers can visit www.usaswimmingfoundation.org to see a list of USA Swimming Foundation Make a Splash Local Partner swim lesson providers
- Participation in formal swimming lessons can reduce the likelihood of childhood drowning by 88% (Archive of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, 2009)
- Incorporate swim training gear, water toys, pool floats and pool games to make learning to swim a fun activity for the whole family to enjoy together
o To help kids learn to swim, Swimways has developed the Swim Steps program, which offers products for all skill levels, from water introduction to water exploration to swim training. Products range from infant and baby pool floats in Swim Step 1, to swim trainer life jackets in Swim Step 2, to graduated swim training vests in Swim Step 3. Families can learn more about Swimways and its Swim Steps products by visiting www.Swimways.com.
- Practice, practice, practice! In order to develop a love of the water and a comfort with swimming, children need to consistently practice in order to enhance their skills and boost their confidence in the water
To celebrate Swimways’ International Learn to Swim Day™ events, countries across the globe are partnering with local water safety organizations, joining up with the PAW Patrol™ pups, and promoting the Swimways Swim Steps and PAW Patrol™learn to swim products, in an effort to spread the message of the importance of learning to swim.
In the United States specifically, Leslie’s Pool Supplies, Service and Repair will kick off its Pool Safety Campaign in support of the USA Swimming Foundation at an Aqua-Tots Swim Schools location in Phoenix. Local children will receive free swim lessons from two-time Olympic medalist and USA Swimming Foundation Ambassador, Jessica Hardy, play and pose with PAW Patrol™ characters and more. Additional celebrations include Hardy and the PAW Patrol pups throwing out the first pitch at the Arizona Diamondbacks baseball game on Sunday, May 19.
¹The Swimways Survey was conducted by Wakefield Research among 1,000 nationally representative U.S. parents with children under 18 living in the home, between April 3 and April 6, 2018, using an email invitation and an online survey. Results for the interviews conducted in this survey are accurate to within plus or minus 3.1 percentage points with a 95% certainty.
About Swimways Corporation
Swimways, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Spin Master (TSX: TOY;www.spinmaster.com), is a leisure and recreational water products manufacturer striving to make free time more fun through innovation. Swimways is rich in traditional values and is respected for the quality and integrity of its products and services. With distribution in over 20,000 storefronts, Swimways markets four unique brands: Swimways™, Kelsyus™, COOP™ and Aerobie™. The company’s diverse staff is passionate about developing fun and engaging products for kids. Swimways is equally passionate about making sure kids are safe in and around the water and believes learning to swim is an important life skill. For more information about Swimways, visit www.Swimways.com.
In 2012, Swimways founded National Learn to Swim Day, held on the third Saturday of May each year, which is dedicated to educating parents and children about water safety and the importance and benefits of learning to swim. Swimways has been helping kids learn to swim for over 50 years – longer than anyone else (except parents, of course!).
About the USA Swimming Foundation
The USA Swimming Foundation serves as the philanthropic arm of USA Swimming. Established in 2004, the Foundation works to strengthen the sport by saving lives and building champions— in the pool and in life. Whether we’re equipping our children with the life-saving skill of learn-to-swim through our Make a Splash initiative, or providing financial support to our heroes on the U.S. National Team, the USA Swimming Foundation aims to provide the wonderful experience of swimming to kids at all levels across the country. To learn more, visit www.usaswimmingfoundation.org.
About Spin Master
Spin Master (TSX:TOY; www.spinmaster.com) is a leading global children’s entertainment company that creates, designs, manufactures, licenses and markets a diversified portfolio of innovative toys, games, products and entertainment properties. Spin Master is best known for award-winning brands including Zoomer®, Bakugan®, Erector® by Meccano®, Hatchimals®, Air Hogs® and PAW Patrol®. Since 2000, Spin Master has received 103 TIA Toy of The Year (TOTY) nominations with 30 wins across a variety of product categories, including 13 TOTY nominations for Innovative Toy of the Year. To date, Spin Master has produced nine television series, including the relaunched Bakugan: Battle Planet and current hit PAW Patrol, which is broadcast in over 160 countries and territories globally. Spin Master employs over 1,800 people in countries around the world including Canada, United States, Mexico, France, Italy, United Kingdom, Russia, Slovakia, Poland, Germany, Sweden, the Netherlands, China, Hong Kong, Japan, Vietnam and Australia.