Recreation: For Community Water Safety, SKWIM is the Name of the Game

Wednesday, January 24 | 1:30 - 2:45p.m.

Session Description:
Problem 1: The community is ill prepared to enter open-water environments because swim lessons focus only on pool safety and preparation for swim racing

Problem 2: The City Parks and schools have no available organized recreational team sports game for the water, whereby the greater community can engage and enjoy.

Solutions: SKWIM - (pronounced like swim with a "k" = swim & skim) is a new and growing team water-disk sports game for all ages and abilities, which teaches open-water safety skills in the context of game play. SKWIM is engineered to meet the needs of both non-swimmers and swimmers alike, with game gear and action that prepares youth and adults for lifesaving situations and drowning prevention.

Need for Session: 
The national water safety focus is on life-jackets because it is an easily implemented campaign, however, aquatic classes that teach open-water safety can prevent more accidents by providing valuable practical experience that stays with you for life. Such open water safety classes are infused into SKWIM programming by using game play that emulates lifesaving mechanics, and incorporating the use of swim fins like all other open-water rescuers use. Proper swimfins increase a person's ability in the water by 50-100%. Training with these swimfins transforms players into experienced water safety experts, and prepares them for lifesaving.

Kevin McCarthy, SKWIM USA

Kevin McCarthy is Board Chair for SKWIM USA 501c3 of Sammamish Washington. Kevin is a 10-year volunteer youth swim instructor, a lifeguard, and ergonomic design consultant to companies including Nike Swim, Speedo USA, Jacuzzi, Finis eLifeguard and others.