For most kids, summer is all about sunshine and free time! And what better way to spend that free time than out on the water with you? Boating with kids can be a great way to share your passion with them and create great summer memories together.
But while boating can be one of the most fun and memorable summer activities for kids, it can also cause stress and frustration. Don’t worry – we have tips to help you have a successful boating trip and keep the summer fun going!
Prepare for the Day
To go boating with kids, you need to prepare, especially if this is their first time out on the boat. A few of our recommendations:
- Start Early – Don’t wait until you’re on the water to discuss safety tips or set expectations; talk to them several times beforehand. Hopefully, by the time you’re on the water, they’ll only need gentle reminders.
- Run Through the Logistics – How often will you use the restroom, and where? Who sits where, and who gets which lifejacket? Include these details when talking to the kids to lower the chance of fights during your summer fun.
- Make a Grab-And-Go Bag – Gather everything you’ll need ahead of time so it’s not a scramble in the morning. All ages need sunscreen, sunglasses, snacks, and water; younger kids may also need diapers, a change of clothes, and toys.
- Safety First – When you’re selecting life jackets for kids, consider one that is U.S. Coast Guard approved and rated. Make sure their life jacket is in good condition and fits them properly prior to leaving the dock.
Put the Kids in Charge
What better way to make boating with kids a success and create lifelong boating fans than to give them a sense of ownership?
- Follow Their Lead – Start by asking questions: Do you want to know more about any part of the boat? What do you love about being out on the water? These conversations can lead into ways to involve them.
- Give Them (Some) Autonomy – Instead of assigning tasks, let the kids create their own. Lean into their natural interests: if one loves lists, they can complete the checklist of boat tests (lights, engine, etc.). If another is wary of being on the water, make them Safety Inspector and put them in charge of life vests and checking the weather.
Take Care of Yourself, Too
Kids take cues from the adults around them. If you’re having a rough time, chances are they’ll pick up on it.
Do what you can to make sure you’re comfortable. Just like the kids, you’ll need sunscreen, sunglasses, water, and snacks. But you should also think about the physical endurance of boating, particularly if you suffer from back pain.
Smooth Moves Seats Helps Create a Memorable Summer of Boating
Instead of bringing along aspirin, try installing a shock-absorbing seat suspension system like the ones from Smooth Moves. Our seats absorb the harsh bumps of the waves, keeping you comfortable and helping you avoid back pain so you (and the kids) can stay on the water longer! Shop our store here or reach out to us with any questions you have.
Here’s to a summer of successful boating trips with your kiddos!