Summer is just around the corner, and for many of us, that means it's time to break out the slip and slide. However, what starts as a fun activity can quickly turn into a fiasco if proper precautions are not taken. In this post, we'll provide slip and slide safety tips for both adults and children, as well as some healthy recommendations for minimizing the risk of injury and illness.
What is a Slip and Slide?
When it comes to slip and slides, there are many different versions. The official version is the Slip ’N Slide. According to Wikipedia, this children's toy was invented in 1961 by Robert Carrier and manufactured by Wham-O. In a nutshell, it is a soaking wet plastic sheet that becomes very slippery. When placed over the grass, it allows someone to slide across its surface.Here’s one of the ads for the product:
Some versions, like Crocodile Mile, also include an inflatable pool for the user to slide into.
Is it Safe To Use Slip and Slides?
Slip and slide safety depends on caution and active supervision. Otherwise, these products can pose a potential risk of danger. As a responsible parent or caregiver, make sure to observe all the necessary safety guidelines.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) provide recommendations for slip and slide safety that can help reduce the risk of injury and illness.
These recommendations often include:
- Ensuring that the slide is placed on a level surface with adequate clearance on all sides.
- Using a soft landing surface at the end of the slide.
- Avoiding use if the slide is too hot, or if the water is too cold.
- Showering after using the slide to remove any contaminants from the water.
Slip and Slide Safety for Adults
In addition to the basic slip and slide safety tips above, there are some other factors to consider. While slip and slides are often seen as a “kids toy,” adults can, and often do, enjoy them too. In some cases, adults may face greater hazards. Due to their higher body weight and ability to run faster, there is a much higher risk factor. It is generally advised that you do not slide headfirst so as to avoid any impact on your face, head or neck. To minimize this risk, it's important to wear proper footwear, like swim shoes. As in all water situations, avoid consuming alcohol before using the slide.
Additionally, and we cannot stress this enough: TAKE IT EASY! Don’t run or slide at full force. Your potential impact is significantly more powerful than when you were a kid. Use caution when landing at the end of the slide.
Looking Out for the Kids
As we’ve seen, adults have their own potential dangers with these products, but children also face risks. These can include slips and falls, collisions with other children, and drinking too much contaminated water. To ensure child slip and slide safety, active supervision is essential. Additionally, using age-appropriate slides and avoiding overcrowding on the slide can help minimize the risk of injury.
Slide Into the Landing
It's important to remember that the information provided here should not be considered medical advice. Before hitting the slip and slide, it is always a good idea to consult with a medical professional.
Slip and slides can provide hours of fun, but it's important to follow proper safety precautions to avoid injury or illness. By following the tips and recommendations provided in this post, both adults and children can enjoy the thrill of the slide without the risk. So go ahead and break out that slip and slide, but remember to stay safe!