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Helping Seniors Take to the Pool Safely

Caitlin Morgan Insurance

The summer months are upon us, and it presents an opportune time for residents of retirement homes to flock to the outdoor swimming pool for some exercise and recreation. However, while swimming is considered one of the most effective and beneficial types of physical exercise that seniors can engage in, providing a low-impact way to move the body without putting undue stress on aging joints while improving flexibility, it also requires a high level of observation in order to ensure the safety of the swimmers-as much oversight as one would give to children. The professionals at Caitlin Morgan Insurance have programs that can cover the retirement home for the good work it does; likewise they can offer risk management information that can aid these facilities in offering recreational activities with an eye to safety, too.

Why swimming is so good for the senior body

This activity benefits young and old alike, but seniors can really be invigorated by this form of aerobic exercise. Just thirty minutes of exercise a day can help build up heart-healthy aerobic capacity, increase muscle size and strength and reduce fat; even those who cannot actually swim can benefit by simply walking, dancing, or kicking in the water, which has twelve times the density of air-thus allowing folks to activate all of the large muscles of the body at the same time. The increased resistance helps build muscle strength without putting undue stress on bones and joints. Also, residents can safely practice balance exercises in the water without the danger of falling down. And the social aspect of swimming can be a tonic in and of itself-getting people out of their rooms and interacting with each other is good from a physical, mental and emotional standpoint.

Safety at the pool

  • Ensure seniors are accompanied by one or more vigilant caregivers (who can swim and know CPR) when using the pool-no solo swimming should ever be allowed
  • Have a sturdy pool rail next to the steps to aid getting in and out of the pool
  • Consider adding an ADA pool lift to further ease disabled seniors’ entry and exit from the water
  • Keep the pool area free of any obstacles or items that could cause someone to trip and fall (e.g., extension cords should be tucked out of the way, carpeting should be tacked down)
  • Install nonslip treads on the pool stairs to provide additional traction

Talk to the team of professionals at Caitlin Morgan Insurance, who have the expertise and experience to guide you in selecting the best coverage for your facility.