While doing my weekly run in the deep water of the diving well, I witnessed the young life guards at the Herndon Community Center Pool rescue a participant in a water aerobics class this morning. The aquatic exercise instructor and 2 lifeguards responded immediately to the first signs of distress. They were able to get a water safe wheelchair down the indoor pool ramp quickly, without interrupting the other activities in this busy public athletic facility. The several children’s swim classes, the lap swimmers and private lessons continued with minimal interruption. The Herndon Commanders Swim program head was also dispatched and the entire incident was dealt with professionally and efficiently, no doubt due to extensive training and vigilance. While life guards and pool service employees get negative publicity when there is an aquatic accident, pool drowning or community center injury, it is important to catch these young workers when they are doing something right. In this case, their quick thinking and excellent training came to the aid of an older class participant in need. I am glad that these life savers work at a pool where I regularly swim, jog in the water and have taken my 4 kids. Good work Herndon Community Center Aquatics staff !
The Aquatic Exercise Association ("AEA") is a not-for-profit educational organization committed to the advancement of aquatic fitness worldwide.
The AEA has posted the following guidelines for exercise classes in swimming pools:
Lifeguard: Country, State, County and Local codes relating to lifeguard regulations should always be followed.
For maximal safety of participants and limited liability for the Aquatic Fitness Professional and facility, AEA recommends that a certified lifeguard, in addition to the Aquatic Fitness Professional leading the class/session, should be on duty at the pool facility when aquatic fitness classes are being held.
If an additional certified lifeguard is not present during the aquatic fitness class/session, AEA recommends:
- The Aquatic Fitness Professional to be certified in water safety and basic water rescue techniques.
- The Aquatic Fitness Professional to remain on deck while leading the class/session unless it is a one-on-one session or small group training (2-5 participants) that requires in-water assistance or guidance.
- The Aquatic Fitness Professional to be fully aware of the facility’s Emergency Action Plan (EAP) and his/her role in this plan.