Splashes and smiles filled the pool at ’s Aquatic Center in Lawrenceville Tuesday.
Thirty-seven swimmers came out to the Gwinnett County pool to take part in the “World’s Largest Swimming Lesson.” This group made up just a tiny fraction of the record seekers across the globe—from to Lawrenceville, Georgia to Hamburg, Germany and beyond.
“Facilities all over the world will hold the same lesson simultaneously,” explained Kristin Hahn, aquatics director at the center. “And we’ll attempt to break the world record while promoting .”
According to the Centers for Disease Control, drowning is the second leading cause of all unintentional injury deaths in children between the ages of 1 and 14.
In its inaugural year in 2010, the Guinness World Record was set with 3,971 participants. Public and private pools in 34 states, five countries and three continents dove into the fun last year. The group hopes to top that number this year.
After watching a brief swimming safety video, the group was divided up by age—from tots to teens—and even adults.
Melanie Kinard of Lawrenceville took part in the event, along with her two children, Cameron, 8, and Lacey, 6. She said her family signed up primarily because of the excitement of being a world record holder.
“I know they’re not going to learn how to swim in one day,” said Kinard. “But learning techniques to be safe around the edge of the pool, don’t dive into shallow water, things like that,” she said, were important lessons.
Kinard’s kids also found lots of fun in just being in the water.
“It was fun swimming and I had fun swimming with my friends,” said big brother Cameron with a wide grin that was missing several teeth.
“Jumping in the water!” added his sister, Lacey.
When the 45-minute class was over, participants had not only learned valuable lessons in swimming safety, but they also took home a certificate saying they are an official world record breaker.