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Fitness & Sports

Avoiding Water Sports Accidents

Water sports, like water skiing, jet skiing, boating, and swimming, are great ways to have fun, cool off, and stay fit. They also present a set of unique dangers, however, so be sure that you are aware of all the safety rules before trying them to prevent serious injury. While you should always research the specific safety rules for each sport you try, here are a set of basic guidelines to get you started:

Stay Aware

It is critical in any water activity to be very aware of all activity going on around you. If you are swimming, you will be mainly looking out for the obvious things, like boaters or jet skiers. Make sure to keep a safe distance, and be sure that you remain as visible as possible if you end up uncomfortably close. If you are a boater or jet skier, keep a constant lookout for other boaters (especially when turning), as well as more difficult to spot swimmers. This is just common sense, but it can be easy to get caught up in the fun and miss something important.

Follow Local Rules and Regulations

If you see a sign telling you not to swim or boat past a certain point, there is probably a reason. Rules like that exist because others have been injured or killed there before. Perhaps it is a deceptively high traffic boating area, or a common spot for rip tides. Just remember that the signs outlining which areas are safe know what they are talking about, and going a little bit further is not worth drowning or getting hit.

Sports are Sports

Remember that even though water sports like skiing and swimming can be laid back beach activities, they still carry risks like any other sport, and you should be properly prepared to prevent them and deal with them. Things like cramps can be extra dangerous when you are swimming far from land or when you are being pulled behind a boat at high speeds. Always keep in mind what your limits are and be sure not to take part in high risk activities without someone nearby to ask for help.


Unfortunately, no matter how cautious we are, accidents do happen. In the case that you or someone you are with does sustain an injury, your response time is critical. First, make sure you are in a safe as location as is possible to prevent a repeat of the accident you just had. Call 911 immediately. If you know basic first aid or CPR, use them as needed until more help can arrive.


After all immediate medical concerns have been addressed, you will need to think about the future. Unfortunately, once you have sustained an injury, it will take time to heal. You may even have to undergo a lengthy recovery period depending on the extent of your injuries. It is a good idea to seek out a good physical therapist that can advise you on your best plan to a complete recovery, and prevent reoccurring instances of the injury.

Kitchi Joyce