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Former Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels Helps the Swimming Saves Lives Foundation
Kick Off Adult Learn-to-Swim Month
Sarasota, Fla.—April 1, 2014 Mitch Daniels, Indiana’s former governor currently serving as the president of Purdue University, joined U.S. Masters Swimming’s executive director, Rob Butcher, at the Purdue University pool Monday to help kick off April as, “Adult Learn-to-Swim Month.”
Mitch Daniels says swimming has become an integral part of his fitness regimen and he gets in the pool whenever he can.
“After many years of running and weight lifting, about 20 years ago, I began integrating swimming into my workout schedule. I find it a great complement to other forms of activity. It is easy on the joints and tremendously relaxing. I swim a mile once or twice a week; more when I get the chance," Daniels says.
Indiana is one of seven states to issue a proclamation in support of Adult-Learn-to-Swim Month—the governors of Florida, Nebraska, Washington, Vermont, Massachusetts, and Maine have also issued declarations in support, and other states are processing proclamation applications.
With nearly 19 million pools and hot tubs in our country, “water does not discriminate” says Butcher. “We invite adults who desire to learn to swim to visit one of our 1,500 program partners, where they can receive lessons that will help them learn basic swimming skills.”
Alarmingly, 37 percent of American adults cannot swim the length of a 25-yard pool, according to the Centers for Disease Control, putting them at risk for becoming one of the 10 people who drown every day in the U.S. When adults can’t swim, they often pass their fears and water avoidance behaviors on to their children, thus perpetuating the risk of drowning in another generation.
To reduce accidental drowning deaths, which the CDC cites as the fifth leading cause of unintentional deaths, it’s recommended that children and adults learn to swim.
In addition to helping to prevent drowning, swimming skills provide long-term health and fitness benefits. According to the Sports and Fitness Industry Association, more people aspire to use swimming for exercise over all other fitness activities.
“The grants provided by the Swimming Saves Lives Foundation are supported by contributions from our 60,000 Masters Swimming members, with many of those same members also volunteering their time to teach others,” Butcher says. “Once an adults learns the lifesaving skill of swimming, we want to encourage them to keep swimming, like Mr. Daniels, and enjoy the lifetime health, fitness, and social benefits of swimming.”
To find out more information or search for an adult learn-to-swim program in your area, go to usms.org/learntoswim.
About the Swimming Saves Lives Foundation
The Swimming Saves Lives Foundation is the charitable arm of U.S. Masters Swimming. USMS has been promoting the health and fitness benefits of swimming for more than 40 years. The Foundation provides grants to USMS’s local programs for adult learn-to-swim classes. For more information, visit usms.org/giving.