Swim Lessons

Strong Swimmers. Confident Kids.

At the Y, swimming is a life skill. Our swim lessons prepare kids of all ages to stay safe and have fun in the water, building strong swimmers and confident kids.


Chris Blakney
Aquatics Director
610.259.1661 ext. 3013

Ridley Area

Kira Iatesta
Aquatics Director
610.544.1080 ext. 2225


Hope Coacher
Aquatics Director
610.557.YMCA ext. 5012

Swim Test Policy

NEW – Swim Lessons – You and your child’s health & safety and that of our staff team is very important to us. All group swim lessons being offered will require a parent/guardian to get into the pool with the child.  Our instructors will guide you to help teach your child in the pool.  Instructors will not have direct contact with the children at this time.  Masks are required for all adults and children 2 years of age and over until they enter the water.

Our new swim lesson progression curriculum is geared towards what we know about how children and adults learn and develop. Students begin with and build upon skills they are ready to learn, helping them to celebrate their successes, build self-confidence, enjoy learning to swim, and water safety. Our new swim curriculum is based on extensive research, and we look forward to seeing swimmers advance quicker through each stage.

The fun fish names we previously used to identify the different levels have been replaced with names that more closely relate to the skills we will be working on in each stage. Swim lessons are now organized into three phases, and each phase includes several stages, focused on a specific skill set.

For the student, emphasis is on skill progression and water safety. Parents will now have peace of mind knowing that their child will learn self-rescue skills first, then, how to swim.

As students advance, focus turns to increasing stroke coordination, comfort and endurance. Once the students have built strength and endurance, they will master familiar strokes, such as elementary backstroke, front crawl, backstroke, breaststroke, and butterfly.

How Do I Know Where to Place my Child for Swim Lessons?

New to Swim Lessons or Unsure of Your Child’s Level?

To make swim level selection as easy as possible, please refer to the following document.

Already Know Your Child’s Swim Level?

If you already know your child’s swimming level, registering for a swimming lesson is very easy!

Parent*/Child Swim Lessons (ages 6 months – 3 yrs)

Swim Starters

Previously Water Babies & Parent/Tot classes

 Accompanied by a parent, infants and toddlers learn to be comfortable in the water and develop swim readiness skills through fun and confidence building experiences, while parents learn about water safety, drowning prevention, and the importance of supervision.

* At the Y, we know families take a variety of forms. As a result, we define parent broadly to include all adults with primary responsibility for raising children, including biological parents, adoptive parents, guardians, stepparents, grandparents, or any other type of parenting relationship.

Preschool Swim Lessons (ages 3-5 yrs)

Swim Basics

Safety Around Water

Previously Pike/Eel & Ray/Starfish

Students learn personal water safety and achieve basic swimming competency by learning two benchmark skills:

  • Swim, float, swim— sequencing front glide, roll, back float, roll, front glide, and exit
  • Jump, push, turn, grab

Youth Swim Lessons (ages 6-12 yrs)

Swim Basics

Safety Around Water

Previously Polliwog/Guppy

 Students learn personal water safety and achieve basic swimming competency by learning two benchmark skills:

  • Swim, float, swim— sequencing front glide, roll, back float, roll, front glide, and exit
  • Jump, push, turn, grab

Swim Strokes

Previously Minnow/Fish & Flying Fish/Shark

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.

Adult/Teen Swim Lessons

For those ages 13+ who are beginner or inexperienced swimmers.

Private/Semi-Private Swim Lessons ***All Locations***

If you feel you work better in a one-on-one setting, want to work on specific skills or strokes, or would like more flexible class times, these lessons are for you. Private lessons are for individuals; semi-private lessons are for two children or adults with one instructor. Lessons are scheduled at the same day and time for seven consecutive weeks.

Competitive Swimming

Competitive swimming is one of the most popular national competitive sports the Y offers. It is available at both of our branches. Competitive swimming helps kids value hard work, reach for excellence, and enjoy spirited competition in state, regional and national championships.

Youth Diverse Abilities Swim Class

A fun, non-competitive aquatics program for ages 5 to 18 with developmental challenges.