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Safety Rules


Baby Club
The Virtual Magazine
of the First School



At pools

  • Keep a constant watch on the kids nearby water, whether they know how to swim or not.
  • Look for a lost kid inside the pool first.
  • Be sure that the adult person to look out for kids knows how to swim as well as basic rescue standards.
  • Do not try to rescue a person who has accidentally plunged into the water if you do not know how to swim, unless you can give him or her a life-ring or jacket or any other device. On the contrary, try to get somebody else to help.
  • Place near the phone, where easily seen, the EMERGENCY numbers and teach children to make these emergency calls as soon as they are old enough.
  • Avoid floating devices. It is advisable to hold children in your arms. Floating devices are not only useless in case of an accident but also can cause the accident by deflating or turning upside down making the child stay with his or her head immersed. Many accidents are produced by children who plunge into the water on the belief that they are wearing the floating devices.
  • Make a clear distinction between floating devices and life-preservers as authorized by the Prefectura Naval Argentina or similar official naval entity in other countries as certified by their seal on them. Unauthorized devices are only dangerous toys that might cause an accident.
  • Avoid children to get totally immersed provided they do not have full underwater breathing control, since water can pass to their lungs with serious consequences. Make sure children learn this technique as soon as possible.
  • Forbid categorically pushing and fist or hand blows in the water, as it is difficult to predict when these games may become dangerous. Generally, when somebody falls into the water accidentally, he or she grasps firmly whoever is besides him or her and both of them fall into the water without being able to surface.
  • Forbid running around the pool (this causes sliding and tragic plunges).
  • No shouting must be allowed, as this may cover a true call for help and avert a timely rescue. Naturally, grown-ups must give the example as children tend to imitate easily euphoric attitudes mistaking joy and happiness with uncontrolled expressions.
  • Avoid dangerous games such as pushing someone to the bottom in order to prevent him or her from surfacing.
  • Trust only teachers who have a qualifying degree and experience, in this way you will be preventing your children from suffering emotional or physical injuries. Check the personal data accuracy. Those who work with babies or young children must be specialized and must have taken post-graduate studies. Non-specialized teachers are not able to teach Matroswimming.
  • Specifically determine who, among the grown-ups in the pool, will be in charge of supervising the children. Many drowning accidents take place when someone does not pay attention to children on the wrong belief that someone else is taking care of them.
  • Always be sure of where the children are in countries or closed residential areas where there are several pools around. Check not only the pool of the house where you are staying but also those pools in neighbouring houses, as many accidents take place in surrounding pools which lack a fence when children are alone or playing with others and do not let their parents know that they are leaving the house.
  • Oblige children to ask for authorization to go into the pool and this will become a habit. On the contrary, impose severe punishments (although this may make you sad or it is very hot) in the case that children go into the pool without permission. Tell them they are to stay outside the pool for the rest of the morning or the afternoon. This is an effective way of avoiding undesired accidents. Generally, only once is enough for the children to understand.
  • Do not take a sunbath if you are supervising children in the pool.
  • Always check you can hold a baby properly, especially if suntan lotion has been applied.
  • Avoid going into the water after having had an abundant meal.
  • Avoid going into the water after having drunk alcoholic drinks.
  • Avoid sleeping on floating mattresses that drift away without anyone else around.
  • Avoid trying to ride on big inflatable toys (such as crocodiles, whales, etc.) or platforms near the pool edge as in loosing balance a serious bump may be the consequence.
  • Try to observe that swimmers´ nails are properly polished and not excessively long in order to protect other swimmers´ eyes.
  • Watch out particularly aquatic space under big inflatable toys or platforms, as children can get trapped without possibility to swim to the pool surface. Once the game is over, take these devices out of the pool as they avert a clear sight of the pool bottom.
  • Teach children to ask for help shouting in a loud voice, held from pool edge, and do not allow them to utter false alarm playing.
  • Avoid shouts and loud music in the space nearby the pool during a noisy party when kids are invited, since help requests may be lost in the confusion of sounds.
  • Check that people in charge of watching are really responsible and reprimand them if found distracted, sleeping, reading or doing something other than watching. Sound professional people will never lose attention although the pool may look calm or there are few persons. Life-guard duties must include a continuous watch on the pool surface and surrounding spots. Institutions and users must be strict on the compliance with these services.
  • Follow and make others follow life-guard’s instructions.
  • Expressly forbid children to leap standing-up or hugging both knees with bent legs from pool edge. It is dangerous since they may have a failed plunge and bump their heads against the edge. Likewise, it may be dangerous for other swimmers who are swimming under water unaware of the risk. Remember that kids are not capable of distinguishing correctly what they perceive from the true speed of other swimmers under water, so they may plunge at the wrong moment, believing the space is empty and the swimmer far away. Some persons have suffered from quadriplegic shock caused by a medullar trauma originated by this type of accidents.
  • Forbid that a distracted person, or one who is sitting or lying peacefully on the space surrounding the pool, be pushed into the water. A great number of people have become unable to enjoy water benefits and pleasure due to a past negative experience.
  • Avoid forming a “pyramid-like” human figure, since there are reports of children drowning when they were in the base of the pyramid and could not let others know they had exhausted their air capacity and this also was unnoticed by others.
  • Watch the slide when children are playing. Using a slide to get into the water or when it is already in the water demands a strict control on the part of adult people. Although it may be very funny, the slide must be solid enough. Besides, children´s lack of skill must be taken in to account. The slide surface must be wet in order to be used, because if dry it may cause skin flaying.
  • Take care that the trampoline is correctly used, leaving an empty space right under it. Allow only one child at a time avoiding that the bounce of the one leaping makes others fall down unexpectedly. Strictly forbid kids to push a child who hesitates to leap from the trampoline.
  • Avoid swimming in open pools if it rains and especially during thunderstorms due to the risk of lightning.
  • First, try to take off the shoes in case of an unexpected fall when dressed up. Already submerged, try to take off uncomfortable clothes that hinder free arm strokes and kicking, and think it over if the clothes are to be transported to dry on the pool edge, or directly abandoned there. Bear in mind that trying to undress with the head outside water takes longer and demands much more energy. It is easy to be done totally submerged.
  • Wait for three seconds in case a child has fallen into the water to check whether he or she can surface, on the contrary get quickly into the water through the stair case or from the edge.
  • Get smoothly into the water and do not plunge head first in order to rescue your child, because your body will stir a great volume of water and this can move the child far away from the place he or she was last seen, making the rescue more difficult. It is worth taking two more seconds and getting into the water without stirring it.
  • Remember to transport the child in the usual way practiced in the pool in the case of having to take him or her out or rescuing him or her. While the child holds the grown-up´s neck or clothes, you will be able to swim more freely. On the contrary, try to hold the child with his or her head out of the water while trying to move forward.
  • Chose red or orange swim-suits preferably, since they are clearly seen even in unclear water.
  • Avoid swimming at night in pools which are not well lighted.
  • Place emergency lights in closed pools with artificial light, in case an electric cut occurs.
  • Avoid swimming in pools with deficient sanitary conditions. Even transparent water does not warranty sound bacteriologic control and may be contaminated. Periodic laboratory analyses are necessary in order to secure water purity. Poor sanitary or hygienic conditions may cause serious diseases and infections, such as: dermatitis, the so called “pool ear infection”, skin and mucosa irritation caused by wrong chlorine use and Ph can be easily avoided in a pool with strict controls. Liquid chlorine is difficult to dose and if excessive can produce eye injuries and reduce a clear vision (already reduced by the water itself). In most cases it may produce conjunctivitis. Besides, previous shower and medical control must be obligatory. Water must be filtered and purity must be ensured through chemical products that do not irritate skin or mucosa. Chlorine and Ph levels must be checked at least twice a day. It is advisable to reinforce the use of bleach in sanitary facilities, showers and dressing-rooms for older children and adult people.
  • Forbid your children to enter into a pool when the bottom cannot be clearly seen. Unclear water make difficult or prevent successful rescues. When they become of age, teach them they must not swim in such condition even though their friends do.
  • Keep water clear all year long, even if the pool is used only in summer.
  • Avoid leaving toys or other objects floating on the pool surface as this calls the children´s attention. Inexperienced kids may try to bend beyond the 45o. angle and fall unavoidably. Surface must be free when the pool is not used. Teach your children to keep toys away when they leave the pool.
  • Check the slides and trampoline condition.
  • Place fibre or canvas pools on a sand or foam bed (at least 10 cms. width) in order to absorb potential falls.
  • Check and control the lids on filters or sub-aquatic water intakes.
  • Check for possible cracks along the pool coating.
  • Be sure that paint is no toxic (if pool is painted).
  • Check electric connections to and in the pool. Electric appliances must be adequately protected by automatic circuit-breaker devices, double if possible in case one of them fails. The circuit must be checked and updated periodically and far from children´s reach, as they are attracted by switches.
  • A safety screen over the pool surface is advisable. Fences are not enough protection since kids love to climb and jump over them (See “Facilities”)
  • Have life in high regard. Never swim on your own and do not allow children to swim on their own. A shock caused by a sudden temperature variation, a clamp, an emotional breakdown may cause an accident in the water.
  • Remember: Experienced swimmers never swim on their own.
  • Learn CPR techniques and teach them to kids over 12 years old.

At home

  • Teach children to swim as soon as possible. They can learn to swim as from 12 days old with the pediatrician´s authorization.
  • Watch them during their daily bath. Never let them unattended. A young child may drown in 30 cms. depth in a few seconds.
  • Get ready all the bathing elements (soap, shampoo, sponge, and towel) before getting the child into the water.
  • Let the phone or bell ring if you are bathing a child, or get him or her out of the bathtub if you are going to answer.
  • Do not give older children responsibility over younger ones during bath time. Children are not to take care of younger sisters or brothers. To leave younger kids under older brothers or sisters supervision might become a serious mistake.
  • Assume full responsibility for your own or other children when they are in the pool or nearby.
  • Watch and be alert even when children are playing is swallow depths (such as buckets or washbasins) since they can get drown.
  • Cover the toilet. Many fatal accidents have taken place when a kid who was playing with the water inside fell being unable to get out.
  • Learn CPR techniques and teach them to children over 12 years old.

Open sea or river

  • Avoid plunging in unknown water. The bottom may be nearer or farther than supposed. There may be rocks, cutting elements or other dangerous material. A previous exploration may be necessary. Even clear waters may be tricky when trying to ascertain how near or how far the bottom is.
  • Respect flag instructions at seaside or at deep sea. Do not try to cheat them since you would be exposed to possible drowning.
  • Avoid camping nearby water streams or rivers without previous information on swellings.
  • Local people advise on streams or rivers must be followed. They know better the changes according to the time of the year. Some rivers look peaceful but can suddenly become fierce without giving time to react.
  • Carry dry clothes over your head in case you have to cross a water stream which is swelling. It is important to do this in order to have dry clothes after getting to the opposed bank.
  • Be sure about the watch personnel skills and complaint in case you see them distracted, sleeping, reading or doing something else. Good professional staff never gets relaxed even when the pool, sea, river or stream may look calm or there are few swimmers. Hiring a lifeguard means having people watching at all times. Both individuals and institutions must be strict on demanding that this service be rendered with maximum care.
  • Obey and make others obey lifeguards instructions.
  • Pay close attention when surfing tables, boats and inflatable toys are used to move along the water with waves impulse. Do not allow people on them to fall asleep as an accident might occur.
  • Read minutely instructions on the back of the seats when travelling by plane if you have to cross the sea or ocean. Make clear any doubt by consulting the crew.
  • Do not swim while it is raining and especially during thunderstorms due to the added risk of lightning.
  • Follow the instructions on what type of clothes must be worn to practice certain water sports, in order to avoid hypothermia in case of accident.
  • Do not go into severely cold waters. Some streams and especially lakes in southern regions are very cold and you may be subject to hypothermia and drowning. Even though in some cases cold water prevents quick brain deterioration due to lack of oxygen and people have been successfully rescued after being submerged for some minutes, this must not be taken as the rule.
  • Avoid walking along, skating or practicing sports on frozen surfaces since ice layers are not always the same width and in some cases they can crack.
  • Never swim on your own. Skilful swimmers never do this.
  • Learn CPR techniques and teach them to children over 12 years old.

When sailing

  • Go on sailing only if you know how to swim.
  • Learn survival techniques and how to swim as soon as you can.
  • Demand that children and grown-ups wear the life-vest or jacket obligatorily since it is vital in case of sinking or unexpected plunge. Test life-jackets in a pool before using them in open water or in case of emergency. Every country has official organisms where the rules on life-jackets or vests are listed.
  • Check that the boat has enough auxiliary devices to be used in case of accident (boats, life-rings, life-jackets or vests and extinguishers). The Captain in every country will be in charge of showing these elements to the passengers. Demand a drilling on how to use these elements correctly especially with children.
  • Follow the instructions on what type of clothes must be worn to practice certain water sports, in order to avoid hypothermia in case of accident.
  • Have life in high regard. Never swim on your own or allow children to do this. The skilful swimmer never swims on his or her own.
  • Learn CPR techniques and teach them to children over 12 years old.


  • Never dive without previous training that will give you sound knowledge and techniques.
  • Check carefully the equipment condition and have it checked by one of your mates.
  • Set clearly the alarm indication to be lifted with the people on the surface.
  • If you are to watch on the people who go diving, do not get distracted, and in case of using the life-rope watch it closely.
  • Never dive on your own.
  • Learn CPR techniques and teach them to children over 12 years old.


Soldado de la Independencia 1352 (1426) Ciudad Autónoma de Buenos Aires
Teléfonos: (54)(11) 4785.5565 / (54)(11) 4783.3976
Horarios de consulta telefónica: Martes a viernes de 9:30 a 13:00 y de 16:00 a 19:30
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