Swimming pool season is almost here again. Each year across the country there are injuries reported related to swimming pools. In almost every situation the injury could have been prevented if someone would have used common sense.
Each year people injure themselves by diving into pools head first. It is unfortunate, however it still happens. Granted some of them are a result of someone acting stupid and diving off of the top of a slide or a house. However, unfortunately some of these injuries are a result of someone doing what they know to be okay, and that is diving off of a diving board. A diving board is made for diving from, so it makes sense that someone would end up going into the water head first from one. The thing about them is that they are somewhat dangerous and even more so if you don’t know what you are doing. Lets face it there are very few of us that have actually been trained on how to properly dive into a pool. In addition to that the codes regulating the depth and distance to the slope of modern day pools are in my opinion a joke. They don’t allow adequate room for a novice diver to safely dive without the threat of a head or neck injury. To safely dive into a pool they would need to know proper technique. Proper technique is taught in a much deeper pool than what most residential dive pools are. So every time someone dives into a residential pool, they are running the risk of injury or worse. That is why it is my personal opinion to never dive into a pool.
Many of the pools being built today are just not adequate for diving into even though they are advertised that way. In many places, building codes state that a pool must be a minimum of eight feet deep if it is to be dove into. To save time and money the eight foot deep mark is what many builders stop at. How often is the bare minimum a good thing? Eight feet is only two feet taller than myself, and there are many people who are taller than I am. That would leave only two feet between my head and the floor of the pool if I dove in wrong. That is a little too close for comfort. Especially if you consider the facts that I would be moving toward the floor of the pool and that I weigh about 200 pounds. I definitely do not want 200 pounds coming down on my head and neck, especially if I am under water. That is seriously the stuff that nightmares are made of. Unfortunately for a number of people each year this nightmare is a reality.
It is not my intention to scare anyone. I am simply trying to raise your awareness of the danger associated with entering a pool head first. I know that more and more people are getting pools and that they are probably under the impression that diving into a pool off of a diving board is completely safe. The danger increases as the depth of the pool decreases. To put it plainly, eight feet deep is not deep enough. Even if you think you know what you are doing a dive can go wrong in a second.
All that being said I want to take this opportunity again to say that it is my opinion to never dive into a pool or any body of water.