Bad behaviour at the Kits Pool?

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The Vancouver Sun reports that swimmer Rebecca Sharp nearly gave birth 32 weeks into her pregnancy after being head-butted in the stomach at the Kitsilano Pool. Sharp is now calling for a crackdown on bad swimming behaviour.

“What happened last year was that a guy was in front of me and he got to the end … and he just did a tumble turn straight back,” she said. “He went straight into my stomach.”

Sharp said she was helped out of the pool and taken to a lifeguarding station where she waited for an ambulance to arrive, soaking wet and cold from the breeze.

“I was in a lot of pain,” she said, adding that she began having contractions.

She was taken to hospital, where a midwife was called just in case Sharp began to give birth.
“Eventually everything subsided,” she said.

“The baby was born on time and I had a girl; she’s wonderful.”

Obviously, swimming isn’t a contact sport. To Sharp, the rules for lane swimming are pretty simple. She compares it to driving saying:

“You give way, and then you move across and then you swim back the other way.”

Appropriate pool etiquette w/length swimming

So what is appropriate pool etiquette with length swimming? According to Sean Healy, the supervisor of aquatic services at the Vancouver Park Board, lifeguards are well aware that poor lane choice can lead to problems, and they work hard to correct bad behaviour in the pool.

The rules are simple: If slower swimmers are repeatedly passed, it’s appropriate for them to move down a level. In the case where faster swimmers are constantly passing people, they should move up a level.

Traffic at Kits Pool

When I’m at Kits Pool, the lifeguards seem very interactive and aware of lane traffic. Perhaps, if swimming is like driving, then the occasional merging incident is both unfortunate and  inevitable.  But maybe you’ve had a different experience? And it never hurts to brush up  manners.

At last, the summer sun is out. What are some common pool rules that need reinforcing?

Last modified: August 2, 2011

2 Responses to " Bad behaviour at the Kits Pool? "

  1. john says:

    The lifeguards could take a more active approach to explaining the rules to partons at the Kits pool. After all, it is a very unique and seasonal facility that is only open part of the year; people forget! They would be assisted by improved signage which explained the rules of the road to swimmers. Currently, the signs explaining how things work are only located at one of the two ends. Additionally, they are only posted in English. Some additional instructions, could easily be placed on the ends/bottom of the pool the next time it is painted. There used to be text on the yellow paint at each end reminding people not to stand in that area…

  2. Heinz Doppelganger says:

    The LAST thing we should be doing is applying rules of driving to other activities. Have you seen how badly driving habits in Vancouver have deteriorated in the past decade? The turn signal is now registered with the WWF as an endangered species.