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Krystal Lara is one of very few Latinas in her class at Stuyvesant High School, and in the pool. She’s backstroking her way toward the Olympics.

From The New York Times:

Her Parents Thought Swimming Lessons Were a Good Idea

Krystal Lara is one of very few Latinas in her class at Stuyvesant High School, and in the pool. She’s backstroking her way toward the Olympics.…

Former Yale swimmer Siphiwe Baleka

Good video about former Yale swimmer Siphiwe Baleka

http://www.foxsports.com/video?vid=396080195760

Rebecca Wear Robinson's Blog (80)

Make A Splash!

The USA Swimming Foundation raises funds to support programs that save lives and build champions–in the pool and in life.

As the philanthropic arm of USA Swimming, the USA Swimming Foundation works to strengthen the sport from grassroots to gold medals. Whether we’re equipping our children with learn-to-swim skills, or providing…

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Added by Rebecca Wear Robinson on May 21, 2013 at 12:45pm — No Comments

Happy International Water Safety Day!

Happy International Water Safety Day!  Did you know that today, May 15, is International Water Safety Day?  The members of the U.S. Congress know, because a group representing drowning prevention efforts in the U.S. is meeting with them today to alert them to the hidden epidemic of…

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Added by Rebecca Wear Robinson on May 15, 2013 at 10:17am — No Comments

No Funding? Can Crowdfunding Help End Drowning?

Have a great program but no way to fund it?  Crowdfunding could be the answer.  Social media is changing how we do business in more ways than one.  The old way of doing business meant funding programs by applying for grants, hosting charity runs or selling candy to raise money.  Traditional ways of tapping into established pools of money, getting…

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Added by Rebecca Wear Robinson on November 28, 2012 at 10:58am — No Comments

Child Safety Products - Which Should You Use?

Are you a ‘buy every child safety product on the market’ parent or a ‘well, a few bumps won’t kill them’ parent?  Is every table in your house surrounded with foam padding or do you silently curse when you are visiting someone with an indecipherable toilet lock? 

We all want to keep kids safe, but the huge range of options can be…

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Added by Rebecca Wear Robinson on November 21, 2012 at 2:34pm — No Comments

I'm A Mom and I'm Pissed Off!

I

’m a mom and I’m pissed off.  Not a bit concerned.  Not even angry.  I’m pissed off as in, ‘I have a flame thrower and I’m not afraid to use it’ pissed off.  Why?  Because child safety is about as big a mom issue as you can get, and yet children keep drowning and no one is talking about it.  We all know ‘stop, drop and roll’, but did you know that…

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Added by Rebecca Wear Robinson on November 1, 2012 at 12:48pm — No Comments

Using social media to teach swimming.

 

How can I teach thee?  Let me count the ways....

  1. Traditional swimming lessons  - through your Y, park district pool, community pool, local swim instructor or any other well-regarded program.  The classes should be fun and not at all threatening or frightening to your child.  Start early and…
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Added by Rebecca Wear Robinson on October 17, 2012 at 10:20am — No Comments

Do you have a social media policy?

I recently wrote about a group of lifeguards was fired for posting a video of them lip-syncing to the wildly successful Gangnam rap song. Variations on Gangnam have garnered over 300,000,000 hits to-date on YouTube.  Thanks to the ham-handed…

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Added by Rebecca Wear Robinson on October 10, 2012 at 11:12am — No Comments

7 steps to end drowning.

 

“If you set sights high and you stick with it, you can make real progress.”  Dr. Paul Farmer

Dr. Paul Farmer is a medical anthropologist and physician.  He is a founding director of Partners in Health (PIH), an international non-profit organization that provides direct health care services and…

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Added by Rebecca Wear Robinson on October 3, 2012 at 1:00pm — No Comments

Make Stone Soup.

Are we ‘Too many cooks spoil the soup’ or ‘Stone soup’?   (Stone soup is the fable where the hungry soldier puts a stone in a pot of water and convinces the townspeople to add to the ‘delicious’ stone soup by adding a turnip, a potato, a carrot, until it really does become a delicious soup for the whole town.)

Too many cooks spoil the soup…

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Added by Rebecca Wear Robinson on September 26, 2012 at 10:24am — 2 Comments

Shallow Water Blackout

Even the best swimmers are not drown-proof, and Shallow Water Blackout can be the cause.  I’ve had some inquiries about Shallow Water Blackout recently which led me to develop a list of resources.  I thought I’d share them here, starting with a description of the issue from …

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Added by Rebecca Wear Robinson on September 19, 2012 at 3:33pm — No Comments

Should you fire people for being happy?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8ohqy7aAwMc

 

A group of lifeguards was fired for creating a video on YouTube.  This link has over 1,000,000 hits so far.  Yes, that is 1 million people who now know what a lifeguard uniform looks like.  It’s 1 million…

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Added by Rebecca Wear Robinson on September 12, 2012 at 11:50am — No Comments

Wet cell phones don't work.

That’s right, cell phones don’t work when they are wet.  I’ve heard the trick about putting them in a bag of rice to dry them out, so if you leave your phone outside during a rain storm or it tips out of your pocket into a puddle, you can bring it back to life in a day.  That’s great, but what if you need to call for help?  What if your phone gets…

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Added by Rebecca Wear Robinson on September 5, 2012 at 11:32am — No Comments

Are you a bad mom (or dad)?

I am.  Why just last week, while picking up school supplies for my kids, I expressed eagerness that school is starting soon.  Judging from the shocked looks on the other mom’s faces I might as well have said I hate my kids and am miserable being around them.  (For the record, I love them intensely, but after 12 weeks we are ALL ready for school to start!)  And the list…

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Added by Rebecca Wear Robinson on August 29, 2012 at 10:30am — No Comments

Bullying and Water

 

My kids and I headed to one of our favorite places last weekend, the Millennium Fountain in Chicago.  After a week of blistering temperatures, the fountain was packed with kids (and adults) splashing with joyful abandon.  The Fountain is brilliant in it’s design, huge slabs of rough granite with water running continuously over them with huge LED…

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Added by Rebecca Wear Robinson on July 11, 2012 at 12:20pm — 1 Comment

Making a Social Impact

Social Impact bonds are “a new strategy for improving the performance of government programs. In short, private investors — typically foundations — pay the costs of a new program in its early years, and the government later repays the investors, often with a bonus, as long as the program meets its goals. If it fails, taxpayers pay…

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Added by Rebecca Wear Robinson on June 27, 2012 at 11:05am — No Comments

Programs that work.

Measurable results.  Sustainable results.  Analysis.  Cost-benefit analysis.

These aren’t just buzzwords.  These are the criteria that all drowning prevention programs should be measured against.

I was thrilled to read the just-published…

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Added by Rebecca Wear Robinson on May 23, 2012 at 2:53pm — No Comments

Update on Global Initiatives

I’ve highlighted several initiatives in the past few months.  Time for an update.

1.  Petition to the United Nations:  Add Drowning to Millennium Development Goal #4, Reduce…

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Added by Rebecca Wear Robinson on May 9, 2012 at 10:00am — No Comments

Get some respect.



We don’t get no respect.

One of the most common themes I hear from aquatics professionals is, ‘Why don’t people realize this is important?  Why don’t they understand?’.

The next most common theme is ‘should we or shouldn’t we adopt standards, issue licenses, and have…

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Added by Rebecca Wear Robinson on April 18, 2012 at 2:13pm — No Comments

Adopt these 16 key tasks for water safety.

There are as many messages about water safety as there are organizations and individuals working on the issue - which makes it pretty confusing to the general public.  The irony is that all the messages are pretty much the same.  I think we need to make them uniformly consistent - globally. 

Below are the Open Water Drowning Prevention Key…

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Added by Rebecca Wear Robinson on April 11, 2012 at 10:45am — No Comments

End drowning with 3 words.

How do we end drowning?  We change people’s behavior around water. 

How do we change behavior?  We change intrinsic motivation, how someone acts even if no one else is around. 

How do we change intrinsic motivation?  Tell people what to do.  Motivate people to do the right thing.  Make it easy…

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Added by Rebecca Wear Robinson on March 21, 2012 at 11:01am — 2 Comments

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