Developing lifelong swim skills is the goal of Youth Swim Lessons. For ages 6 to 14 years, Youth Swim Lessons offer instruction on strokes and water safety, as well as character building through an emphasis on the Y's four core values of caring, honesty, respect and responsibility. YMCA of the USA-certified instructors pre-plan lessons for structured classes in a fun environment. Kids build up to learning six strokes: freestyle, elementary backstroke, backstroke, breaststroke, sidestroke and butterfly. Classes are offered by timeslot, rather than level. Instructors assess skills on the first day and group children based on their abilities. Kids stay active and build confidence as they develop skills and find success. Opportunities for group and partner work also allow kids to grow socially.
Don't know what level your child belongs in? Contact the Welcome Center of your nearest Y location to talk about swim assessment opportunities to place your child in the appropriate swim level.
Polliwog (Beginner): Participants in this class will become comfortable in the water, learn floating and safety skills and receive an introduction to the four major strokes.
Guppy (Some swim experience): This class is for swimmers who are comfortable in the water and can swim a short distance on their own. Swimmers learn rotary breathing, the backstroke and underwater swimming and gain confidence in deep water.
Minnow (Intermediate): To enroll in this level, children should be able to swim the front crawl stroke with rhythmic breathing and swim on their back alternating arm strokes for 50 feet without a float belt. Minnow is an intermediate level where children improve on their front and back crawl techniques as well as learn the basics of the breaststroke and sidestroke.
Fish (Advanced): To enroll in this level, children should be able to swim the front crawl stroke with rotary breathing for 50 yards and know basic breaststroke, sidestroke and elementary backstroke. Students work to refine the crawl stroke, elementary backstroke, back crawl stroke and sidestroke with turns and receive an introduction to the butterfly stroke.