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Scuba Diving

Junior Open Water Diving (Scuba Diving)

Have you ever been to the coast? There are many things to hold your attention, from the white sandy beaches to the deep color blue water of the ocean. What is even more amazing is the whole worlds of fish, coral, and exotic fauna underneath it. Now, even children can experience this magic for themselves thanks to the junior open water diving and scuba diving lessons. Additionally, your child will get to learn something cool and new in the process.

What is junior open water diving?

Junior open water diving involves teaching children how to discover the ocean’s secrets and have fun while at it. This consists of a series of scuba diving lessons by the Professional from Lifesaving Africa Rescuers 

We know scuba diving for your kid sound fun and exotic. However, junior open water diving and scuba diving courses are not for every child. 

The most obvious requirement is that the child must be a competent swimmer. The scuba diving program is also only available to children aged ten years or older. Divers between the ages of 10-11 years are only certified to dive for a distance of 12m only. They must also dive with a LAR Professional or a certified parent or guardian. 

Divers of ages 12 to 14 must dive with a certified adult and dives cannot exceed a depth of 18m. Children up to 16 years old are only allowed to do so in the company of certified divers, after which they officially become open water divers.

Junior open water diving training

LAR  junior open water diving has three sections. These are knowledge development or theory, confined water or pool dives, and open water or sea dives. 

To be certified as a junior open water diver, the first skill to learn is basic scuba diving. This involves a series of swimming pool diving 3  open water boat dives to test your skills. You must spend a total of at least 31 hours taking the junior open water diving training before you can get LAR certification. This can take 4-5 days to complete. 

Once inside the water, we teach the children how to focus on their breathing and making sure that all the scuba diving equipment is working perfectly. Junior divers learn how to be aware of what is happening around them at all times. This helps them to monitor their air and keep at the right diving level, as well as know where everyone is in case they need to call for help. 

They also learn a little about underwater photography, identifying the fish, and get to enjoy all that the ocean has to offer. After the training, some of the scuba diving benefits that the junior diver enjoys include better fitness and flexibility, sleep, and getting to interact with the wonderful sea life regularly. 

Survival Swimming

Survival swimming from a sinking car

The third cause of death through unintentional injuries in the world is drowning, according to the World Health Organization, WHO. This is around 7% of deaths caused by injuries. Individuals with increased access to water bodies, men, and children have the highest risk to drown. 

In Kenya alone, we have had our share of sorrow, with the recent incident at the Likoni Channel in Mombasa leaving a family grieving over the drowning of a mother and a daughter. It is quite an unfortunate incident, but in such instances, there are chances of survival. 

Much has been said about how to escape from a sinking car. But what happens once you and other passengers are out of the sinking vehicle? You will need to stay alive until help arrives. 

Here are some of the things to do once you have escaped from a sinking car:

  • Stay calm

You might have escaped from a sinking car, but being in a large and deep-water body could still be scary. Your first action is to remain calm. Panicking will fill you and any other passengers with fear, which translates to weakness and drowning. 

Stay as calm as possible while you look for ways to stay afloat. If there are other passengers with you, give them encouraging words to keep them calm, too, and increase their chances of survival. 

  • Swim to safety

If you are not too far from the shore, try to swim to safety rather than waiting for help. 

  • Use survival swimming strategies to stay afloat

If there is no land in sight, then you need to preserve your energy. So, do not try swimming to the shore. Instead, use survival swimming skills like survival floating on the back, survival floating of the front, treading water, and disrobing to stay afloat.   

  • What if there is a non-swimmer passenger? 

In the unfortunate event, you have another passenger with you, and they do not know how to swim, then you will need to help them swim ashore too. 

To keep both of you alive, you will have to use the chin grab strategy to help them swim ashore. Dive under the water, swim towards the passenger, turn towards their back, and grab their hips. Then, you will need to lift their chin using your least dominant hand. This strategy ensures that nothing is inhibiting your limbs from swimming. It also ensures that your dominant hand is free to help both of you swim to safety. 

The best swimming methods to use in such an event are the sidestroke and the elementary backstroke. 

But what would happen when you are not the victim but a bystander? Your quick response and survival swimming skills will help save a life or two. Below are some of the things to do if ever you are a bystander when a vehicle plunges into deep water:

Use throwing assists at the victims, e.g., a rope or piece of clothing, etc.

  1. You can try reaching out to the victim with your hand if they are not far from the shore. Another option would be extending a tree branch or a pole for them to grab at. However, you need to ensure that you are not too close to the edge to avoid the victim pulling you inside. 
  2. NOTE BETTER: Do not jump into the water if you are not sure you could save a life. Jumping into the water will give the victim hope that they have help. With this, they can cling onto you, making it impossible for both of you to swim. 

Survival swimming skills are necessary, not just for swimmers, but for everyone else. These skills can come in hand in the unfortunate event you are in a sinking car, or you are a bystander when a car plunges into the water. 

Lifesaving and survival swimming skills have not received the attention they deserve in Kenya, Lifesaving Africa Rescuers has and is at the forefront in training lifesaving courses, CPR, and first aid. We also focus on sensitizing the public on water safety standards, drowning prevention, and survival swimming in case you or someone falls into deep waters. Escaping from a sinking car and surviving in the water after the escape are two different scenarios. Both scenarios need much attention for us to ensure both the victim and the rescuer survive the ordeal. 

Some of the techniques we teach include treading water, survival dead man’s float on the back, survival dead man’s float on the front, mushroom float, starfish floating, and disrobing in the case where you have your clothes on making a floating device out of them.

Lifesaving Africa Rescuers remains committed to drowning prevention, sensitizing the public on water safety standards, and survival swimming in the country. We urge the government and the relevant authorities to come together and join us in this prevention measure before they happen…. #preventionispossible.

 

Swimming

Drowning prevention campaign in Kenya

There is nothing as harrowing and painful as losing a loved one to drowning. Worldwide statistics show that over 300,000 people die as a result of drowning annually. 90% of these cases happen predominantly in third world countries especially Kenya. However, the figures are not ironclad. Children and young adults are at a greater risk of drowning. Despite the gravity of the situation, very little has been done towards the prevention of the same. Little or no resources are geared towards this end. Lifesaving Africa Rescuers’ drowning prevention campaign was started in 2016.

 The aforesaid campaign was meant to sensitize and help in the implementation of preventive strategies. This was to be as outlined in the WHO Global report on drowning. The report aptly pointed out that little has been done to address this issue.  The government has been tasked with the responsibility of implementing the report. There are many such preventive measures outlined in the report. 

The report is timely and points out what can be done by implementing the following measures. Installing barriers to limit access to water. The provision of safe places for preschoolers away from water and the engaging of capable caretakers for the same. Teaching children swimming and other water safety requirements. The report also requires bystanders to be trained in safe rescue techniques and resuscitation. Setting and enforcing safe boating, Shipping and ferry regulations. There is also the managing of flood risks and other natural occurrences and disasters.

Public sensitization via strategic communications and developing a national water safety plan is the government’s purview. The above has been touted as the best way to intervene and prevent drowning which is rated as a leading cause of death.  It is along these lines that the Lifesaving Africa Rescuers has taken an active role in teaching children on how to swim and thereafter engaging them on junior lifesaving courses and even lifesaving competitions. This is all going to be an ongoing campaign on water safety and survival swimming. This project will go a long way in curbing and reducing deaths that are the outcome of drowning. All this is aimed at sensitizing the general public that some of the cases are preventable through the concerted efforts of the community and other relevant authorities.  

Swimming

Lifesaving course training in Kenya

Over 360,000 people die annually from drowning. However, taking a lifesaving course can help one reduce the statistics. With lifesaving skills, one stands a higher chance of keeping an individual from drowning.

There are a number of lifesaving courses that one can take to help them better their life saving skills. Qualified coaches and institutions offer these courses in the country. Here at Lifesaving Africa Rescuers, we will provide you with life saving training courses to help you keep yourself and others safe from drowning.   

By training with us, you can learn the below lifesaving skills:

Basic Lifesaving

The basic lifesaving course will equip you with personal survival skills and noncontact reserve methods.

Through this course, one learns how to enter into the water during emergencies, lifesaving strokes, and survival skills like HELP, treading water, clothing and the use of PFDs among others

Advanced Lifesaving

With the advanced lifesaving course, you will learn more rescuing techniques.

The course covers supervision skills, contact rescues, releases and escapes techniques, defense techniques, communication systems as well as responding during emergencies and action plans.

Senior Lifesaving (SNL)

For anyone looking for a course that trains on rescue techniques in any setting of aquatic, then the SNL course is the one to go for- from inland to open waters, surf, poor and open waters.

In SNL, you will learn how to manage spinal injuries, risk management & legal obligations, special rescues, how to keep records, lifts in water and how to do the first aids in aquatic settings.

Scuba Diving

This course is for anyone interested in learning how to operate scuba diving equipments and other such equipments used in diving during search, rescue and victim recovery operations.

Apart from learning the above survival and lifesaving skills, you will get

  • A certificate- done by Kenya Lifesaving Federation (KLF)
  • Employment- in places with pools or life saving organizations
  • Attachments and internships

Give us a call today and get your certification in any of the above lifesaving courses.

Swimming

Lose weight through swimming

Swimming can be more than a hobby. If you want to lose weight and the common cardio exercises seem a bit much for you, then swimming is your alternative. In fact, swimming will provide you with a full body workout.

There is no specific amount of weight one can be promised they will lose through swimming. However, your weight, swimming speed, and strokes will determine how much weight you will lose. With a few swimming sessions every week, you will start seeing a difference.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends at least a two and a half hours of moderate exercise, swimming included, to help one lose weight. Sure, cutting down the calories in your diet will work but to accelerate the speed, you will need to exercise. But swimming to lose weight does not end once you have shed that fat. To maintain your new weight and body size, you need to keep swimming on the regular.      

Burn those calories

You might not believe it, but swimming will help you burn calories. A 30-minutes swimming session for someone weighing 70kgs (154lb) will burn approximately 255 calories while an hour swimming session burns around 510 calories. This is if one is swimming slow freestyle laps at a moderate rate.   

The more you weigh, the more calories you will burn and vice versa. Additionally, first swimmers tend to burn more calories than veteran swimmers. A veteran swimmer already knows how to move through the water with minimal resistance. However, they can burn more calories by adding a few sprints.

Tone those muscles

Swimming will also help you lose weight by toning your muscles. As mentioned earlier, swimming is also a cardiovascular type of exercise. It will put most of your muscles into work, some more than others, but they will get a burnout.

Your back (latissimus dorsi), shoulders (deltoids) will get most of the workout due to pulling to get your body through the water. Other muscles include your butt (glutes), pecs, and thighs (quads) due to the kicking.

It is important to note that your swimming strokes also play a significant role. Here are different types of strokes and the muscles that will be affected:

  • Freestyle- biceps, triceps, forearms, chest, neck, and middle and upper back.
  • Butterfly- neck, chest, shoulders, abs, upper and lower back, hamstring, trapezoids, calves, lateral hamstring, and quads.
  • Breaststroke- chest, calves, quads, and the back of your shoulders.
  • Backstroke- middle and upper back, quads, trapezoids, and glutes.   

In conclusion, hitting the gym is not the only solution to losing weight. Swimming is an alternative you can go with since it also involves putting most of your muscles into work. Learn the different styles of swimming and incorporate them into most of your sessions. This will ensure your whole body gets worked up. Most importantly, do not give up swimming once you start shedding off the fat.

It is highly recommended for you to work with an organization that has a team of professional coaches and instructors that will be with you throughout your weight loss journey. Feel free to contact us for any inquiries.

Swimming

Why Swim To Survive?

Survival swimming is a life skill that every child should have. The goal is that one day, every person in Kenya will have access to survival swimming. The world health organization WHO identified 10 actions to prevent drowning. The importance of teaching Survival swimming to children was one of them.

Survival swimming generally consists of learning the minimum skills needed to survive an unexpected fall into deep water. Roll into deep water and surface with head above water with the airway open, any action to keep head above water for a period of time, including treading water for 30 to 90 minutes. Swimming in a controlled direction in any manner for 10 to 50 meters.

Arming children with these life-saving skills can have a long life immunization-like effect against Drowning.
Survival swimming which has proven to be an effective drowning prevention strategy has been implemented in many countries including, Bangladesh, India, Canada, and others.

Survival swimming is not meant to replace traditional swimming lessons, but rather to teach the basic fundamental skills necessary to survive an expected fall into deep water-an important step to been safe around water. The focus is on survival and getting to safety. The skills do not include “styles points” aiming to have everyone learn to swim remains a worthy goal. But survival swimming can be acquired easily. By more people in less time and at low cost than the traditional swimming lessons.

In a perfect world, everyone would take lessons to learn to swim. Unfortunately, and for a variety of reasons the vast majority of people do not have this opportunity. , meanwhile, the world’s non –
swimmers who live, work play in, on and around water-especially young children-are at high risk of drowning. The more we work together in implementing survival swimming program guide, the more life’s can be saved. We urge all the concerned to join us and protect the most vulnerable without delay.

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