I was wondering what people do AFTER a person has passed their facility swim test to go to deep end, diving board, slide.
In the past we have just always asked the kids numerous times "have you taken the test and if so who passed you" "show me the guard" ect
This year we want to mark the kids each day visually for quick identification. Maybe a wrist band, stamp ect?
I would love to hear what you guys use
We have 2 separate pools and use very different systems for each because of the way they are run and the groups they serve. Our outdoor pool is open to the general public and we don't really have a record of who comes and goes. People pay the entrance fee and can come in for the day. We then test the kids and give them a handstamp to signify that they can go in the deep end. We have a separate stamp (different color) that we give to children over 48" to show that they are tall enough to use the slides. We usually have 1 lifeguard on duty whos only job is swim testing. For our indoor pool, we generally do not have a large number of walk ins for our open swim programs. Because of this we can individually test them. Members have a note by their names on the check off list that designate they have passed the test. Any guests who are visiting for the day are supposed to be tested at either pool, however it is hard to enforce this rule with guards who saw them the day before.
i have 5 outdoor pool and 1 indoor pool which is all free to the public...so people will travel pool to pool and each one has a different deep end..ie diving board, slide, nothing ect
plus my staff of 65 guards could be working at a different pool each day (not the norm but i they are subbing or something)..so they dont know the kids all the time
so im looking for quick visual aids
I would probably suggest the bracelets like you see at amusement parks. For us they dont make sense because we don't have nearly the same volume as you so they aren't cost effective. I have around 20-25 guards on staff. We also generally don't see people going between pools.
At my last three facilities we have used something like these linked below. A guard can take a huge bundle of them and quickly label kids who have passed the test. I like bright neon green for passed. They really are pretty cheap. I'm a small facility and even at the most expensive rate of a box at a time they go a long ways. In the summer when I get repeat kids every day they usually keep them on for a few days and then get a new one.
That is where I got my last few orders. I've used the seconds and leftovers before (like old beer garden type from events) but its really pretty cheap to just buy a few boxes of a bright color. If you want to you can spring for custom printed ones to help build your brand awareness.
You can also keep a list of those who have passed your test at the admissions point for community type facilities or pass holders so they can just be banded at the door. I've done this at my last two smaller community facilities. We start the list over again twice a year (Start of summer and start of fall). The list gets to be a big mess by the end of those seasons.
You can also use a red bracelet to indicate a child that must have a supervisor. So if a kid has a red bracelet and they are not with an adult/supervisor they quickly are recognized and directed to get out until they are re paired with their supervisor. The red bracelet also serves as a reminder to parents to stay with their child.
To prevent backlog of children who have passed the deep water swim test we do the following at our 2 pool facility: all children may enter shallow pool without taking swim test. To move into the big/deep water pool and use diving boards they must swim 25yds across the pool (comfortably w/ face in water, horizontal position, able to turn or lift head to get a breathe) and tread water for 1 min.
The Guard giving the test records their name and age and gives them a plastic wristband (less than 10 cents each). At the end of each day a Head Guard enters all the names into our computer (excel spreadsheet for easy sorting) and sorts them by last name, first. When a child returns to the facility without their band, they check in at the Aquatics office, if their name is confirmed in the computer we issue a new band. This keeps the lines for the swim test shorter for the remainder of the summer. At the end of the season we start a "new list".
At Redwoods, we recommend a system called "Test, Mark, and Protect." Most use a bright wristband or breakaway neck band. Most important though, is to be sure to add an additional layer of protection to the kids that don't pass the test, even in the shallow end.
We discussed this issue in depth during our 2013 State of Aquatics webinar, and we have a resource page available here: http://www.redwoodsgroup.com/safety-resources/aquatics-guidance-and....
I hope this is helpful.