Water Safety: Come Swim at the YMCA
Last updated: May 2, 2019, at 5:16 p.m. PT
Originally published: April 26, 2018, at 9:05 a.m. PT
Safety Around Water
Teaching children how to be safe around water is not a luxury; it is a necessity. The YMCA’s Safety Around Water program can help you make sure they learn essential water safety skills, which can open up a world of possibilities for them to satisfy their curiosity safely.
What Is Safety Around Water?
Through learning how to perform a sequenced set of skills over eight lessons of 40 minutes each, the risk of drowning is reduced, giving your child confidence in and around water.
A typical session includes:
- Exercises to help kids adjust to being in the water
- Instruction in "Jump, Push, Turn, Grab" and "Swim, Float, Swim", two skill sets kids can use if they unexpectedly find themselves in the water
- Specific safety topics, like what to do if you see someone in the water who needs help
- Fun activities that reinforce skills
Swim Lessons at The YMCA
The Y is "America’s Swim Instructor" and the most accessible community resource to prevent drowning and encourage a lifelong enjoyment of swimming. The Y introduced the country to the concept of group swim lessons more than 100 years ago, (1909), and each year, the Y teaches more than a million children invaluable water safety and swimming skills. As one of the largest community-based organizations in the country, the Y owns or manages over 2,000 pools. Thanks to its size and reach, the Y is in a unique position to help bridge the gap in the delivery of swim lessons and water safety education in the U.S.—especially in underserved communities.
A Breakdown of Swim Lessons at the YMCA
- Swim Starters develops water enrichment and aquatic readiness in children ages six months to three years. This category focuses on developing swim readiness skills 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.
Help Keep Your Children Safe
Drowning can happen nearly anywhere with standing water. But, as a parent or caregiver, you can’t keep your children sidelined. You need to equip them with the tools they need to be confident in and around water so they don’t lose out on the health benefits of exercise, the opportunities to bond with family and friends and the sense of accomplishment when they learn new skills.