Did you know that the YMCA invented group swim lessons?
The YMCA has been providing group swim lessons for over 100 years. Swim Lessons provide important life skills that could save your life and will certainly benefit your mind and spirit as well as health over your lifetime.
Safety is our Priority
All of our YMCA aquatics instructors and lifeguards are trained in First Aid, CPR, AED and life-saving techniques. Our lifeguards are tested and trained on their abilities on a monthly basis. You can be confident that you and your family are in good hands with our staff! Your safety is of the upmost importance to us. We have a Swim Policy known as "Test, Mark, Protect" to ensure the safety of our swimmers!
Test, Mark, Protect Swim Policy
All youth ages 6 to13 will be required to perform a swim test to determine whether or not they may swim without a life-jacket or adult supervision. All swimmers ages 5 and under must remain within arms reach of an adult (18 and older) at all times.
Any child not swimming next to a parent must take a swim test. The swim test includes a deep water plunge, an endurance swim, treading water for 30 seconds, more swimming and finally ends with a 10 second float on the back.
This test will prove that the swimmer has the ability to swim in water over the head and the ability to support themselves above the water until help arrives if they are in trouble. The aquatics staff reserves the right to have a swimmer retake the swim test at any point in time.
Children are marked with a swim band to signify their swimming ability.
Testing and marking is the way we ensure that your children are protected. A swim band shows that they have been tested and marked. If they don't have a swim band, an adult must remain with the child and/or the child must a wear a life-jacket for their protection. If the child is 5 years of age or younger, they must be within arm’s reach of an adult (18+) at all times.
Lifeguarding and emergency response Education
There’s a benefit to knowing that the job you perform can save a life. Becoming a professional rescuer helps you to become mentally, physically and emotionally prepared for life’s challenges while developing leadership skills. The YMCA offers classes and certification in CPR/AED/Administering Emergency Oxygen/Bloodborne Pathogens, CPR/AED Recertification, Standard First Aid and Lifeguarding. For a complete list of classes offered, schedules and prerequisites, contact your local branch.
What does it take to become a lifeguard?
To get into the lifeguarding class, participants must:
- Swim 300 yards continuously demonstrating breath control and rhythmic breathing using breaststroke and/or front crawl. Back or side stroke is not allowed.
- Tread water for 2 minutes using only the legs.
- Complete a timed event within 1 minute 40 second. The event includes swim 20 yards; surface dive 7 to 10 feet to retrieve a 10-pound object; return to the surface and swim 20 yards to the starting point with both hands holding the object while keeping your face at or near the surface, and exit water without using a ladder or steps.
Are you ready to become a lifeguard?
Adaptive Swim Lessons
This class is designed for participants who have special needs, focusing on basic water skills and water adjustment to help gain confidence in the water and improve safety skills around the water. Find more information about our other adaptive and inclusive programs!
Parent/Child Swim Lessons for 6 month to 3 years
Our parent/child swim lessons gives parents the opportunity to come alongside the instructor and help teach their babies and toddlers to swim. Each group lesson is taught and coached by one of our instructors. The course allows young children to grow more comfortable with the water through fun activities such as group songs and toys. In addition, parents will learn about water safety, drowning prevention and the importance of supervision.
When registering, look for the "Parent/Child" lessons.
Safety Around Water
Drowning poses a considerable risk for youth and adults. The statistics are sobering, but drowning deaths are preventable. At the Y, we believe everyone should have the chance to learn how to stay safe around water:
- Learning to be safe around water is a life skill. Today, fewer than half of all Americans say they know how to swim. The Safety Around Water program is designed to help change this reality.
- Learning to be safe around water builds a sense of achievement. Overcoming a fear of water and mastering skills in the pool build confidence and competence. Safety Around Water, like all Y programs, helps individuals reach their full potential.