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In a breath, your safety can change

School is out, the sun is shining and we’re all thinking of the fun we have during summer. We think about safety — have the children buckled up in the car, wear life jackets when boating, use sun block when we’re out and about — but what about first aid and CPR training?

Here at the YMCA, we consider all aspects of being healthy, not just exercising and learning to swim. We are concerned with member safety, as well. Our staff is required to maintain current CPR/AED and oxygen administration certifications as well as current first aid. Why do we feel this is so important as part of healthy living? Simple everyday accidents can end up being a life threatening experience — falling and hitting our head, tripping over a ball and breaking a leg, enjoying a snack with the family and a simple laugh can cause a choking incident. A simple Red Cross CPR/AED and first aid course can give us the knowledge to save a life. We feel so strongly at the YMCA about this fact of life that we offer training to our staff so our members and our staff and their families will have those simple life saving skills to help them remain healthy.

I was blessed last week that there are two other members in my home besides myself that are current with all of these skills. I was having a snack with my children and had some rye chips in my mouth when one of the kids said something funny. I sucked the food in, and I was trying to cough it up and tried to swallow. My daughter asked me if I was OK; I nodded. She asked me again, "Are you OK? Do I need to do the Heimlich on you.?" I shook my head no and continued to try and cough. I realized that things were getting worse. I put my hand to my throat and she came behind me and started doing the thrust to my abdomen. It took about 10 for my airway to clear. Think to yourself what you would do. Do you know?

At the YMCA, we consider mind, body and spirit all a part of a healthy lifestyle. Enjoy the summer months — use sun block, buckle up, wear a helmet when biking, send your children to the YMCA for swim lessons, tennis camp, volleyball camp and take a Red Cross CPR/AED and first aid class. Stay safe.

Summer classes

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Our summer programs began Monday. Summer swim lessons are offered mornings for two-week sessions. New are our two-days-a-week morning lessons, which run for five weeks on Mondays and Wednesdays or Tuesdays and Thursdays. We also offer Tuesday and Thursday afternoon/evening lessons. This summer, we have six two-week sessions. Wonder what swim team would be like? Try swim camp from 1 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. June 15-June 18 to see. We still have openings in our Summer Daze program — a safe, healthy fun-filled environment for children. Swimming lessons are included in Summer Daze, as well as field trips, arts and crafts and gymnastics. There is trained staff to look over your child’s safety.

The summer tennis camp started on Monday, too, Summer Volleyball Camp starts Saturday and runs every Saturday through the end of July. It’s not too late to sign up for any of these programs. Call 433-1804 or stop by the YMCA for more information.

Have a fun and safe summer.

Kristi Stasi is fitness director at the YMCA of Austin.

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