City Nippers educating children about water safety

City Nippers registrations are now open for the 2015-2016 season. Photo: Supplied
City Nippers registrations are now open for the 2015-2016 season. Photo: Supplied

With summer just around the corner, families everywhere are gearing up for the beach season.

The dangers around beaches are often overlooked. With a lack of education, what starts off as a great day at the beach, can turn into a bad day very quickly.

City Nippers is an Auckland-based programme run by Surf Life Saving Northern Region, which aims to introduce children to the open water environment and build their confidence in and around the ocean. They accept enrolments from as young as five-years-old right up to 11-year-olds, which makes it perfect for primary school children.

The programme, which is run by qualified surf lifeguards, teaches children fundamental water safety skills, equipping them with the know-how to safely enjoy New Zealand’s beaches.

Children take part in:

  • Wading and duck diving in the water
  • How to use a body board correctly
  • Going around buoys
  • Running races on the sand, beach flags
  • Education on surf safety, sun smart, rips and waves

Each City Nippers course runs for five sessions over a series of five weekends during terms four and one, or during the week from Monday to Friday in the summer holidays.

Parents are welcome to assist with the water activities if they wish, otherwise they are invited to stay and watch, or just drop the kids off.

As a one-off experience, City Nippers is great for reinforcing the important lifesaving messages to children, but for consistent progression it’s recommended that you contact a Surf Life Saving Club and ask for information about their Junior Surf programme.

Click here for information about Junior Surf at the 17 clubs in the Northern Region.

Click here for programme dates and times.

Click here to book a City Nippers course now.

Samantha-Jane Harding
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