Originally Posted by PDXrafter
Carvedog, first that is an awesome profile pic! I was practicing that with my kids this morning, just in the kitchen instead of real water. Now my 5 year old can't wait for me to "throw her in the pool" to practice a flip.
I think you raise a fair point about teaching them with a standard white water pfd. My kids are just not good swimmers (or even at all) yet. So I personally feel more comfortable with the head support. Have your kids ever fallen out in a rapid? If so how did their bodies handle without the head support?
Popping them back up face first is one thing. Teaching them when to breathe in a rapid is another. But again, the safest choice for me is to just keep it to easy water and take the safest route.
Thanks again for the good conversation. Sounds like a bunch of parents that take their kids safety seriously.
Thanks. The profile pic is my oldest when she was five?? or so. I was trying to get her to dunk her head completely. I told her I would take the picture when she went completely under. In a hot tub on the banks of the Upper Main Salmon.
As most if not all PFDs the NRS youth has more flotation on the front than the back. So it will roll you over onto your back naturally. I have had my kids test these out to see how they float when totally relaxed on their back and their face is out of the water. This is simulating unconscious floating. God forbid. I also think the oversized collar and front inhibit swimming. While great swimming without a pfd is the goal it is ok if they just swim well for now in their pfd.
Like openboat said - a crotch strap can be improvised if their is any doubt. At 2.5 you want to make sure nothing happens but the just in case factor must be looked at. I did use different and more cumbersome PFD until they got a bit older, so my comments are more directed to your older child who is able to make more of a difference in a self-rescue situation.
For your younger it should be more about learning the steps of rafting as there should really be no chance of you putting them in the water.
My youngest did fall in paddle boating about 2 years ago. She was goofing and did a complete whiff on a backstroke and went in completely inverted head first. I would pay a lot of money for a pic of the look on her face when she first popped up. She was fine and the PFD popped her right up. We have been using these jackets at our swimming hole since they were around five and seven so they have swam in them a lot.
learch - there have to be other good youth pfds out there. These have just worked out really well for us and I feel like they have kept our kids very safe.