The latest evolution of YMCA swim lessons accommodates varying abilities to help foster a sense of achievement as swimmers progress between levels. Through this approach, advanced swimmers flow more easily to higher levels while swimmers who need more instruction can learn at their own pace.

This results in more confident swimmers who stick with lessons and develop a love for swimming that can last a lifetime.

“All children, regardless of background, skills or age, should have access to swim lessons,” said Jonathan Lee, association aquatics director for the YMCA of the Capital Area. “It’s a rite of passage that can lead to a love of swimming that lasts a lifetime, while increasing confidence, physical activity and well-being.”

There are three general categories of Y swim lessons:

  • Swim Starters develops water enrichment and aquatic readiness in children ages 6 months to 3 years. This category focuses on developing swim readiness through fun and confidence-building experiences. Parents also learn how to supervise children in the water, how to prevent accidents and how to plan for emergencies.
  • Swim Basics develops personal water safety and basic swimming skills in students of all ages. Swimmers develop a high level of comfort in the water by practicing safe water habits, engaging in underwater exploration, and learning how to swim to safety and exit if they fall into a body of water.
  • Swim Strokes introduces and refines stroke technique in older students (school age, teens and adults). Having mastered the fundamentals, students learn additional water safety skills and build stroke technique, developing skills that prevent chronic disease, increase social-emotional and cognitive well-being and foster a lifetime of physical activity. 

To ensure that everyone has an opportunity to participate, financial assistance is available to those in need. To learn more about Y swim lessons and water safety classes, visit ymcabr.org/swim.