So you are dying to know why a paddling pool is essential for your garden?
To be honest, if you don’t have one, you are missing out. They are some of the best pieces of kit you can get to keep your toddlers busy and entertained during the summer months.
They are a brilliant way to kill time during the summer holidays, and we are all aware of how long that they can feel! If you go for a big enough one you can leave it up all summer long (with regular cleaning of course) so the kids can spend the hot, long summer days by splash around and having fun.
They also double up as an awesome base for a water fight which is bound to kick off at least one day of summer.
Although a paddling pool might look out of place in your garden, you can’t deny that they provide several amazing positives for your kids.
Learn to Swim
Even the smallest paddling pools can promote learning to swim in infants. It creates a natural environment and a comfortableness with the water. You can lead on a larger paddling pool and eventually, teach your child to swim from the comfort of your back garden.
Swimming is a great form of full-body exercise and it’s no different for toddlers. Swimming will help them build muscle which in turn will help them in other areas in life. Swimming can be so natural that they don’t even realise that it’s exercise.
Learn to Play Together
If your paddling pools are of a large enough size to fit more than one child in (most are) then they are a great way to promote playing together and sharing.
It might take a little while and a few telling offs but eventually they will get there.
Confidence In Water
For lots of children, it’s natural to be scared of the water. Aquaphobia, as it’s less commonly called is a fear of water and we get it similarly to the fear of the unknown.
Starting with a shallow paddling pool or even just a water slide can help your child get over this natural fear and gain confidence in the water.
Can Reduce Risk of Drowning
Swimming in a paddling pool will naturally increase your child’s water-based strength and confidence which in turn reduces the risk of drowning. Year on year this will increase until you have a dolphinesque child, diving and splashing.
I don’t know about you, but after a hard session in the gym, I always sleep better, and its no different for toddlers. A day in the pool and garden will knacker them out and lead to an earlier night (great for the parents) and a better sleep which is great for the kids.
It’s no secret that it can be difficult to get kids to eat sometimes. But all this splashing around in the pool can mean an increased appetite which is not only helpful for the kids but makes the parent’s lives easier too.
Things to Think About When Choosing a Paddling Pool
The size of your garden will restrict the available size of your swimming pool. Its always wise to have some space around the pool in case children slip whilst getting out. Saying this, the pools size wont be to much of an issue for your children.
Even the smallest size paddling pools can offer the greatest of fun, so regardless of the space available in your garden a pool is a great choice.
Does it need a pump
If you need a pump to blow up your pool you will need to think about the access to power you have in your garden. If you need to run an extension from the house then have you got a long enough lead?
Also filling it with water should be done once you have put all the electric components away.
Can you heat it
Sometimes a pool can be heating with a paddling pool heater. They are quite expensive but great bits of kit that usually work from solar power using the natural power of the sun.
As a matter of safety, don’t use these whilst swimming as they are electric.
Inflatable or Hard Standing
You can get some pretty large inflatable pools as well as some small hard standing or framed pools. Choosing which one is best for you will depend on storage space available whilst not in use and who will be using it.
If you need something that suitable for the whole family and you have the room, a framed pool will be a better option.
You might think that the pool water level is okay as you used it yesterday you didn’t know that it rained overnight. The pool can have a much higher water level after rainfall and you should check it before each use.
On the other side, if it’s due to be a sunny day, the level might be lower or hotter than expected.
Does it need Chemicals?
Some of the bigger size paddling pools need chemicals to balance the water PH levels. If this is the case you need to make sure you are following the guidelines to make sure the chemicals aren’t unbalanced and cause harm to anyone swimming.
It’s important to think about the position or placement of your pool. If there is a tree overhanging your pool you could find yourself with a morning cleaning job each time you want to use the pool. This can also make the water unsafe to play in.
If the pool is in an overly shaded part of your garden, you can find that it’s very cold and not very fun to play in even in the hottest part of the day.
Too close to a fence, outbuilding, or patio/decking can cause a hazard. Not only will water from the pool splash out and cause decking to become slippery, it’s very easy to fall out of a paddling pool for children.
Making sure there’s nothing they can hurt themselves on surrounding the pool is a smart move.
Things to Think About When Choosing a Paddling Pool
Any body of water can be a danger to children and pools are no different. Children can drown in as little as 5cm of water so making sure they are always supervised. Preventing accidents in children should be a priority.
Constant supervision – when a child drowns, they don’t splash around like in the movies, they can’t control their arms.
They just slip quietly under the water and likely will be the quiet that makes you notice.
Don’t leave them alone in the pool – You might not think anything of leaving them alone whilst you go pour a drink or answer the door but even the shortest amount of time can be fatal.
You should never leave your child play on their own whilst there is a filled paddling pool in your garden.
Temperature – Check to make sure that the water isn’t too cold, or even, at the end of the day, too hot.
Babies are very little and even that slightest of temperature fluctuations can be cause for effect.
Suntan Cream – Ensure your little one has suntan cream on. When they are splashing around they are getting wet which can amplify the sun’s rays.
The sun also reflects off the water so can be extra powerful whilst they are playing in the pool.
Slipping Hazards – The area around a paddling pool can get very wet and become slippery. Be aware of the state of the grass around the pool and slow the children down if it’s a hazard.
This also applies to the inside of the pool and care should be taken to ensure children are aware it will be slippery.
Insects/Animals – Be sure to keep an eye of if any bees, wasps, or other animals get into the pool and remove them instantly. They can be can still be harmful even if they seem like they are dead.
Also, a pool filled with dead bugs isn’t the most hygienic for children, you can use a slotted spoon or fishing net to remove them.
End of Play – At the end of each play session be sure to remove all toys and games from the pool.
This is to ensure that no wandering children will accidentally try to reach in and grab something and fall as a result.
You should also consider changing the water in your paddling pool to keep it from going stale.
Is a swimming pool better for your garden? You might find that building a physical swimming pool is going to be better for you in the long run, especially if you are going to be using it for the whole family.
Finding a paddling pool that can fit mum, dad, and two children can work out pretty expensive so if you want to buy something for everyone you might want to consider doing it properly.
Should you buy a paddling pool?
This is a resounding YES! You should definitely invest in a pool.
A pool can be a favoured chew toy for the animals of the night so make sure to get a decent one. We have put together a guide on buying the best paddling pool for a toddler that you can read to help make your decision.
You should also take the time to look after your pool, clean it and store it properly for years of fun to come.
Another tip for your pool owning connoisseurs out there is to make sure you properly dry your pool before storing it.
Excess water can quickly turn into mold if left in the folds of a paddling pool.