A for Athlete

Parent and Guardians Health Survey

NEEDED: HEALTH INFO form NEEDED: Web form installed and working

How Are You?

Tip: When the lifeguard asks that simple question, “How are you?” Be honest.

Lifeguards and swim coaches need to know more about those in their charge than a typical lunch lady. Furthermore, the younger, little people don't know how to self-evaluate, self-diagnose nor filter a simple question from a stranger, perhaps minutes before EMS is even called.

Kids get snacks after a run. Does your son or daughter have any food allergies? Those crunchy Klondike bars get their crunch from peanuts and that would hurt Max. Even the smooth ones have a chocolate coating and needs to be avoided by the head coach, or he'll get a headache and rash.

http://Rauterkus.com/cloh/GUARD See logo on page above:

When a basketball player gets fouled and steps to the line to shoot a free throw in a basketball game and sends up an bad shot, or worse, an “air ball” – no big deal. Nobody dies with a missed attempt on a basketball court. But when a swimmer fails to get to the other side of the pool while in the deep water, that's different. Mistakes at the pool can turn fatal in a matter of moments.

We push, pull and challenge the kids. A bee sting in the middle of a run for one kid is something to notice and shake off. But for another kid with a bee sting allergy, we'll be calling 9-1-1 and rushing to Childrens Hospital. The coaches need to know all the kids and their conditions before we run a mile away from the school nurse.

Parents and guardians, and others who have a keen interest in the children and our participation in Swim & Waterpolo Camp are asked to do these four things.

  1. 1. Fill out the health form provided by PPS in detail. Give that to the school. All schools have a nurse on duty as Summer Dreamers occurs.

To get a copy of that form.

  1. 2. Sign a letter that says: Dear PPS Administrators and School Nurse. I am the legal guardian of (insert your child's name) and I grant you permission to share with the LIFEGUARDS and COACHES all health-information matters of already provided to you about my child (or children). Thank you. Sign your name and note your phone number if there are questions.
  1. 3. Use the WEB FORM designed for guardians to communicate health information to the coaches. This information goes directly into the Swim & Waterpolo Attendance Application and is used on a daily basis by LIFEGUARDS at every site.

Health conditions for the kids change. We want to know about the upset stomach ache or was that a broken rib? Did she have a bad splinter in the foot obtained prior or does she just want to talk with friends instead?


Through the course of weeks, the coaches and teachers can develop a relationship with the kids, but that can't happen with two squads of 40 on the first day, and we'll be swimming and running every day. For a camp organizer to call parents and ask about prior medical concerns that we should be aware of could take a full-time employee three weeks to accomplish given an average time of 30-minute to find, contact and converse with 200 people. We'd rather be at the pool working on skills and drills.

Parents and guardians, we're sorry if we ask you to fill out another form and offer sensitive information again and again, but what PPS knows and can share with outside activity partners is not as forthcoming as we'd like.

Asking for personal health information sounds a bit like a SCAM on STEROIDS, so beware. Understand that our lifeguards may encounter serious life-and-death situations and we all need to be as prepared as possible. With our special events and running in races, we'll need to make calls and reach out to parents/guardians. It helps if we have your email. We want you to join us at the Liberty Mile, but you'll want to confirm the entry and that you'll meet us at the right time and place so there are fewer worries. If we dash to North Park, Sandcastle or assemble an All Star Team for a meet at Pitt, we'll want to communicate, mobilize and keep everyone on the same page. An injury or illness should be communicated to us, hopefully with the form so it can be noted in our constantly updated database and organizer we call the Attendance Application.

We need every ounce of cooperation to make this work well.