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Am i the enemy of fun?
Merfins for a 4 and 7 year old


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#1 gasgirl

Posted 21 November 2012 - 11:18 AM

SIL is buying these for my DDs age 4 and 7 for Christmas

http://oceanikamerfins.com/welcome-to-oceanika

my girls are adequate swimmers for their age, and are safe under supervision in our backyard pool

I think this looks dangerous. It's basically taking a 4 yr old and putting her in water with her ankles tied together.
I wasn't asked if this would be an ok gift for the girls (never am) and when I voiced my concerns to hubby he said he would call SIL. Which he didn't for 3 days and now she has bought them. And is planning to give them regardless.

Hubby says i can always not let the girls use them unless we are in the pool with them but anyone with young girls knows that you can't give a mermaid fin to a 4 or 7 yr old and then expect to take it away without tears. They will love them.

So what should I do? should I tell SIL that this is a big NO and she should return them? or do you think I am being overly cautious and girls of this age should be ok with Merfins? THey are never unsupervised in the pool but often swim with us watching from the kitchen or back yard (a matter of metres away).
I do not like to be the enemy of fun but my girls' safety comes first.

#2 gasgirl

Posted 21 November 2012 - 11:21 AM

any experience with this toy would be appreciated. Rawr I think it looks dumb too but I am thinking as an adult not as a seven yr old. Even on land they wouldn't be able to walk. Let alone the cost .

Edited by gasgirl, 21 November 2012 - 11:22 AM.


#3 Feral Becky

Posted 21 November 2012 - 11:22 AM

It scares the crap out of me, but I have a drowning 'thing'

#4 MissM86

Posted 21 November 2012 - 11:23 AM

Looks really dangerous, not to mention ridiculous! I wouldn't let the girls wear them because if they panicked (sp?) under water things could go wrong really quickly.

#5 gasgirl

Posted 21 November 2012 - 11:27 AM

nothing wrong with a drowning thing. I hate family conflict but this is something i think i need to make a stand on.

#6 Broxie

Posted 21 November 2012 - 11:27 AM

Looks dangerous to me and I'm one of the most relaxed parents out. Not appropriate or safe.

#7 girltribe4

Posted 21 November 2012 - 11:27 AM

My girls would love these , shame I already have their Christmas presents !!  

They already wear fins for swimming lessons and in Grandma's pool , these are pretty similar just stuck together . You do need a lot of strength to swim with them though so it would make a difference if they were ''heavy'' ??
I would be fine for my older girls to wear them for supervised pool play original.gif My 4yr old is no where near a strong enough swimmer .

#8 Guest_Sunnycat_*

Posted 21 November 2012 - 11:32 AM

I think one would have to be a really good swimmer and supervised if using these. They don't look very safe.

#9 FeralFerretOfDoom

Posted 21 November 2012 - 11:34 AM

I think they could be very dangerous, particularly for young children who aren't confident swimmers.

I'd definitely be pushing back on this.

#10 AnnoyingAnt

Posted 21 November 2012 - 11:36 AM

Can't see that they'd be a drowning hazard.  Ankles/feet are not strapped in and feet could easily be slipped out (it's just just like a rubber sandal).  That said, I'd certainly be supervising with young kids.. especially your 4 year old and making sure she's comfortable with sliding her feet in and out (personally it wouldn't even stay on my 5 year old's feet as the smallest size is size 11).  Your 7 year old should have no issues Anyway, if you are not keen on using it in the pool they would make great dress-ups (but not good value compared to a normal pool fin set (and even a snorkel/mask) which are far more useful and just as fun if you ask me).

They sure are pricey too given how quickly kids grow!

#11 bluedragon

Posted 21 November 2012 - 11:36 AM

As a former swim instructor I can't think of a 7yo student I had that I would feel confident in their ability to safely use them, let alone a 4yo.

If she insists on giving them to your girls I'd be ebaying them ASAP!

#12 Bluenomi

Posted 21 November 2012 - 11:38 AM

Hell no would my kids have one of those! Not a 4 years old and I'd only maybe think bout a very good 7 year old swimmer wearing them. I wonder how hard it is to get your feet out of them? I wouldn't want my kids (or myself) struggling in the water in trouble trying to get a foot out.

#13 aprilrain

Posted 21 November 2012 - 11:39 AM

QUOTE (MissM86 @ 21/11/2012, 11:23 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Looks really dangerous, not to mention ridiculous! I wouldn't let the girls wear them because if they panicked (sp?) under water things could go wrong really quickly.



If you google 'safety' it says 'one flick of the ankle strap and they come free'. It seems to be an Aus design so I'd think they'd come down on them like a ton of bricks if they were unsafe.

I'm drowning wary too. Maybe ring the company and ask for more details of safety/weight etc and see if it reassures you. If not ask their refund policy.

#14 daisydo

Posted 21 November 2012 - 11:39 AM

The Mermaid Fin is a fun monofin pool toy ideal for young swimmers. The Mermaid Fin teaches a balanced dolphin kick while also allowing children to increase their confidence in the water.


The Mermaid Fin is a fun monofin pool toy ideal for young swimmers. The Mermaid Fin teaches a balanced dolphin kick while also allowing children to increase their confidence in the water. The Mermaid Fin comes with a comfortable TPR foot pocket and uses a quick-release foot strap so that feet can quickly be removed from the fin for safety. Ideal for children 12 and under, the Mermaid Fin fits shoe sizes male 1-6, female 2-7. The Mermaid Fin should only be used under adult supervision.

Taken from this website here

Edited to fix link

Edited by daisydo, 21 November 2012 - 11:43 AM.


#15 gasgirl

Posted 21 November 2012 - 11:40 AM

thanks girls. Bluedragon yes a lot of things have been ebayed/regifted, but once this is given to a 7yo I can't imagine her ever giving them up...

#16 danielle1985

Posted 21 November 2012 - 11:42 AM

https://oceanikamerfins.com/oceanika-store

On the right hand side there is a video with a 3 1/2 year old girl using them with armband floaties. She seemed pretty confident...

For me it would depend on how easy they are to get off.

#17 Cat People

Posted 21 November 2012 - 11:43 AM

OP, you say safety is your number one concern so please don't supervise your kids from the kitchen.  I assume you are doing chores from the kitchen which means you can easily be distracted.  4 and 7 is far too young to be anywhere but within arms reach.

#18 MrsLexiK

Posted 21 November 2012 - 11:46 AM

I don't see what the big deal is, under adult supervision they seem no worse then flippers.  I personally would only let my 4 yr old in the water with another adult was in their, so clearly we differ on a few things.

#19 Coffeegirl

Posted 21 November 2012 - 11:47 AM

No freaking way would I let my DD wear those in the pool unless I was in the water with her.  And she's 12 and a squad swimmer.

I'm still trying to figure out how you flick the back ankle strap off without having to bend over and do it with your hand.   huh.gif

#20 gasgirl

Posted 21 November 2012 - 11:50 AM

thanks Madame Catty no I am sitting at the kitchen table watching thru the window which overlooks onto the pool . They are closer than when miss 7 swims her 25m squad laps and miss 4 swims her 25m lap. they are good swimmers for their age but that is with all limbs unhindered.
I don't have concerns with my kids' pool safety ( but thanks for thinking of it, it is appreciated and a point that is always well made) rather with this particular toy,  its appropriateness for young children and whether it is worth starting a family xmas drama over or whether I am overreacting.

#21 Charri36

Posted 21 November 2012 - 11:55 AM

I think you will find the novelty will wear off, just like any toy.

Sorry, but I wouldn't be calling SIL and telling them it's not appropriate. YOU need to supervise your kids in the pool. I could imagine using it not just as a pool toy, maybe she might want to watch TV with it on, use your own imagination on how it could be used not in the pool. eg, put it on a teddy etc.

Just appreciate that sometimes you will get random presents that maybe you would not buy, they still can be fun, what's wrong with using it and having a big laugh. Just because you have it, doesn't mean you have to used it all the time. How I said the novelty will wear off.

#22 PrincessPeach

Posted 21 November 2012 - 11:57 AM

I don't have kids, but unless your kids were very competent in butterfly, I can see them being dangerous.

However I probably would still let them be used only if DH & I were in the pool.

#23 MrsLexiK

Posted 21 November 2012 - 11:58 AM

QUOTE (gasgirl @ 21/11/2012, 12:50 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
thanks Madame Catty no I am sitting at the kitchen table watching thru the window which overlooks onto the pool . They are closer than when miss 7 swims her 25m squad laps and miss 4 swims her 25m lap. they are good swimmers for their age but that is with all limbs unhindered.
I don't have concerns with my kids' pool safety ( but thanks for thinking of it, it is appreciated and a point that is always well made) rather with this particular toy,  its appropriateness for young children and whether it is worth starting a family xmas drama over or whether I am overreacting.

ohmy.gif what is not appropriate is inadequate (sp?) supervision of your children when they are swiming. Roayal Australian Life Saving states under 4 you should be in the water, but MOST swim centres will state that you should be within arms length of a child 5 and below.  If you are in the pool with them it is a lot different to being out of the pool at your kitchen table.

#24 gasgirl

Posted 21 November 2012 - 12:04 PM

ahhh rellies, sent to test us.
thanks girls I have taken all your points on board.
We have had 7 yrs of random and slightly inappropriate gifts from SIL but this is the first time an issue of safety has arisen. It will certainly be an expensive way of dressing up a teddy but that is her choice and not my issue.
I think I will save the drama for another day and yes they will most certainly swim with them only when we are in the pool with them. Although how one adult will say in arms length of two children will be interesting.
On xmas day SIL can get in with them..as that day I WILL be in the kitchen doing chores and distracted.

#25 nup

Posted 21 November 2012 - 12:04 PM

Definitelyt age inappropriate which your SIL just onviously doesn't realise. So rather than attacking her for her inappropriate choice perhaps try taking with her about their swimming levels and asking that she holds onto them fir a couple of years.

I know a few 10 year + olds who would love those.




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