That's very interesting cruisingdad,
I didn't know about those methods of saving drowning people,
I especially like the one with the extra life-jacket to tow them in.
Admitedly I never had any kind of lifesaving or swimming classes,
guess it's just a commonly accepted urban legend around here method I shared.
Indeed going immediately into freezing water without previous experience probably isn't a good idea.
That's where people get those "under 5 minute" statistics, it's when people succumb to cold-shock,
true hypothermia take s amuch longer period of time. for freezing water, and it doesn't get much colder than that, it's 10 minutes for fine motor, half an hour for large motor, and about an hour till unconsciousness, afterwhich there is still a chance of ressucitation, espeically children.
In terms of acclimating to cold water, it's done in stages, in terms of starting with bath warm water, to simply warm water, to cool water, cold water, and only then freezing water.
When I was a baby my parents acclimated me in a similar manner, and said they even bathed me in water that was too cold for them :-S, anyways but now I have a very high cold tolerance, and ability to generate heat.
Usually even now when it's hovering around freezing temperatures outside I only wear a sweater, gloves and hat. If it gets to +5C or more I don't need the hat or gloves.
Anyways ya, also perhaps living in Florida and such it may seem foreign to you, but winter swimming is a tradition amongst hardy northern folk, typically in accompanyment with a hot sauna. We break a hole through the ice in the winter and dunk ourselves or swim for under a minute or so to be on the safe side. Afterwards hurrying back to the sauna to warm up. It's great fun and can be quite exhilerating both physically and socially.
Anyways also I guess since your in florida it's quite warm there,
so perhaps the tradiitonal solid vests are too hot for you, I dono.
In Canada generally people are much more safety conscious,
everyone puts on a seat belt when they get into a car,
and obeys traffic lights even in the middle of the night.
Also at every dinghy and educational yacht club I've been to,
everyone puts on a PFD before stepping on the dock.
Though admitedly when poweryachting at family events on my spouse's dad's boat nobody wears a life-jacket/PFD, and he also drinks beer rather freely.
I personally find PFD's quite comfortable, and don't see why I wouldn't wear them for safety, at least on our family boat. Typically what everyone else is doing does little to effect how I do things, since I make conscious decisions about my actions, based on facts and evidence. If I make a good habit of doing something in a safe way, then on the off chance that I'm inebriated or tired and trip, i'll be safe.
Besides, lots of people drive cars, drink alcohol, eat meat, become obese and malnutritoned, so what? There are clearly better and safer ways of living, such as a primarily plant based diet with calorie restriction and optimal nutrition. My only drugs are nutrients lol, mmm raw sunflower lecithin - enhanced attention and dream recall.
btw our kids are still on the way, have a baby boy due in late April.
we're saving up to buy a boat, likely in spring of 2014.
I'm taking some boating essentials coarse and
getting more sailing experience next year.
Can take family for first yacht sail :-).
With all due respect, and I know you Canadians have thicker skin than us South FLorida boys, but I sure hope you discuss washing your child in freezing water with your pedi before doing it. I would be shocked if any physician were ok with that. And quite frankly, I still don't see the point. Sounds uneccesarily dangerous to me, and painful for the child. Also sounds like a great way to catch a horrendous cold.
Is your wife ok with that? Mine would hit me over the head with a skillet and throw me
into the bathwater.
None of my business, I guess. I am just surprised by some of the customs of my Northern Friends. Maybe I live a sheltered life where we wear sweaters when the temps hit 70 and a full wet suit when the water is 75!