Spending a day at the water park is one of the best ways for your kids to enjoy the summer. While splashing in the water may be their primary focus, it’s your responsibility as a parent to ensure that the safety of your kids is not compromised.
Here are my top safety tips to keep your kids safe at an indoor water park.
Safety Tips for Visiting an Indoor Water Park as a Family
Sharpen Those Swimming Skills
No matter how easy swimming in an indoor water park may seem, for young kids, it’s often anything but.
If your child doesn’t already know how to swim, then it’s a good idea to enroll them in swimming lessons before taking them to the water park.
Your child will be able to confidently jump into the water and return to the surface by themselves. If they do struggle, a lifeguard is always on duty, which should give you peace of mind as the parent.
Always Keep an Eye on The Kids
You should never let your little ones out of your sight, no matter how perfect they are at swimming and even if a lifeguard is around.
If you have more than one kid at the indoor water park, encourage them to swim together and keep an eye on each other as best they can.
You should still watch in the wings so you can easily spot any potential danger and act immediately.
Make Them Wear a Life Vest or Floaties
If your toddler is just earning their water wings, they will need a floaty or a life jacket when visiting the water park.
Some water slides can be challenging for young kids, even if the slides are designed for little ones. The best way for your child to stay safe is by equipping them with protective floating gear.
Many indoor (and outdoor) water parks have life vests and floaties for rent, but it’s better to bring your own to ensure a perfect fit for your kids.
Always Wear Water Shoes
The wet pavement in indoor water parks can be a breeding zone for bacteria and viruses.
As if that’s not bad enough, wet, smooth pavement can be a slipping and tripping hazard for kids and adults alike!
By wearing water shoes, your kids will be protected from any potential infections on their feet such as warts.
Water shoes also keep them from slipping while walking on the pavement so you don’t have to deal with any scraped knees or elbows.
Make sure your kids take off the water shoes as soon as they are done for the day to prevent fungal infections. As breathable as water shoes are, they shouldn’t be worn for longer than needed.
Wash Faces and Hands
Playing in the water at an indoor water park is fun, but remember that the pool water is stagnant and not all that clean.
Your kids may be exposed to bacteria and viruses that thrive in stagnant water.
To keep your children healthy, tell them to wash their hands and faces with soap whenever they step out of the water, such as to have a snack.
Agree On a Meeting Point and Stick With It
This is a critical tip. Getting lost in a water park is very easy, even in an indoor park.
By establishing a meeting point ahead of time, your family can reunite if you get separated. Hopefully, it doesn’t come to that, but it’s always better to be safe than sorry!
Understand The Water Park Rules
Each indoor water park has its own set of rules that you can read on the park’s website as well as at the entrance.
Ensure you read all the rules, regulations, and safety precautions regarding height, age, medical conditions, and swimming abilities. Confirm that you fully understand those rules before your kids ever dive into the water.
There are different water slides and water features in an indoor water park, each of which has different age limits. It would be wrong for your nine-year-old to go on a water slide that’s meant for toddlers and vice-versa.
Follow the rules, and if you need clarity, always ask the staff or lifeguards. They’re there to help!
Know What to Do in a Water Emergency
Sometimes water emergencies are inevitable, and so your kids have got to know what to do in case of one.
Let them know that contacting the lifeguard or an adult should be the first thing they do.
As a parent, you also need to understand basic water emergency skills so you can step in if your kids are in danger.
Be Armed With a Water Watcher
Indoor water park lifeguards can easily get overwhelmed, especially when there are too many kids around.
This means you can’t always rely on them to watch over your kids. We’d recommend a water watcher on your team to monitor the waters without any distractions.
The water watcher should not engage in any conversation online or with other people, read a book, or even visit the shop to get a snack when the kids are in the water. Their sole job is to watch the kids.
Since the water watching task is tiring, it would be wise to appoint at least two people in your group so they can alternate in 15-or-20-minute increments.
Keep Young Kids in the Shallow Areas
Since your younger kids are not safe nor skilled in areas of deep water in the indoor water park, ensure they remain in the shallow areas at all times.
If the water park you are visiting features entry pools with zero depth and is equipped with water games, sprays, and fountains, these are the best and safest places for your small kids.
No Running Around on The Pavement
Running on slippery sidewalks or pavement can be dangerous. Your kids can slip and fall, bump into other people, or tumble into the water.
You should encourage the children to walk whether they are visiting the restrooms or picking up some snacks in the car. You don’t want to go home with a limping child whose leg was twisted while they were running.
How to Enjoy a Visit to an Indoor Water Park
Keep Time and Get Tickets Early
The best way to enjoy your day at an indoor water park is by buying the tickets in advance and arriving at the park early.
Your family will avoid the long lines and have enough time to enjoy all the rides you want to check out!
Early arrival will also give you enough time to read and understand the water park’s rules and get familiar with the place.
Additionally, you can inquire about the available foods and prices, which may not be possible when crowds start streaming in.
Pack your Bags In Advance
Don’t wait until the morning of the indoor water park trip when your kids are pestering you to leave ASAP. Pack your bags the day before.
You don’t want to forget the water park tickets and spoil the day for everyone. Ensure you pack the money you will spend (and waterproof money storage), the snacks and drinks, towels, a change of clothes, and a padlock for your locker.
To save time, you can have your kids wear their swimsuits under their clothes, but if you do this, don’t forget to pack some extra underwear and clothes for them to wear after the water activities are over.
Choose Which Water Rides To Start With
Take a look at the map of the indoor water park in advance to choose the rides you want to start with. You can hit all the rides on one side of the park and then proceed to the next.
Take Water Breaks
Water breaks are necessary for everyone because they allow you to rehydrate, refuel and rest.
During the breaks, you can enjoy lunch together as a family or explore anything else the indoor water park offers besides water rides and features.
However, if you take lunch or snacks during your break, give everyone time to digest before splashing back into the water. Otherwise, your child may suffer from nausea or cramps.
Although indoor water parks are a blast, they come with a variety of safety challenges. With the tips I discussed in this guide, you’ll be ready to tackle water park challenges efficiently and enjoy your day!