I Am Not Drowning Project by The Lifesaving Foundation in Ireland

Why Swimmers Drown, Presented By John Connolly & Nuala Moore

Courtesy of Nuala Moore, Waterford City, Ireland.

Nuala Moore and John Connolly presented at The International Drowning Prevention Research Seminar with The Lifesaving Foundation on Why Swimmers Drown on June 15th at the Waterford Institute of Technology.

John Connolly gave an overview of reasons why swimmers get into difficulty in the open water and drown. He has published a number of research papers on this issue.

Connolly has studied why swimmers drown and published papers on two possible reasons: The First Time Problem and The Exit Problem. He leads self-rescue strategies for common drowning situations. “Most people drown because they don’t know how not to drown. This is called the I Am Not Drowning Project.”

Moore gave an presentation on the proper preparation for extreme swims. A faculty member of the Ocean Extreme Medicine course, Moore explained, “We have become completely desensitized to the concept of open water and concept of cold water. Both bring with them their own risks. There is a new category of swimmers who are at risk of drowning – the unprepared novice swimmer in extreme events.

I was honored to share my thoughts on areas of how ‘Extreme Has Become Mainstream’ and, most importantly, how areas of social media reporting has appeared to have desensitized our responses to preparation for the extremes of open water by assessing the risks as they exist, and how security has develop without full understanding of the challenges of open water in its extreme form.

Planning and preparation should include the safety plan of extraction and how swimmers themselves should look at teams with the capacity to rescue and recover and not just fill numbers.

Much of the reporting of extreme swims fails to identify risks and, in this, lies areas of learning.”

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