Preschool Swim Lessons

The YMCA of the Triangle offers preschool progressive swim lessons for ages 3 - 5. These swim lessons are taught year round. 

The YMCA has a low child-to-instructor ratio. YMCA swim instructors are trained to work with younger children and lifeguards are always on the pool deck during swim lessons. Parents are welcome to watch swim lessons from the pool deck.

The YMCA uses class levels to ensure your preschooler is placed according to his/ her ability. All children are evaluated on the first day of class and placed in one of the below levels.

Swim Lesson Critical Skills

Beginner I (Pike)

  • Jump to the instructor from the pool side without a flotation device.
  • Swim 15 feet without floatation and 5 feet without floatation using a forward stroke
  • Demonstrate rhythmic breathing
  • Put head under water, bob, blow bubbles
  • Float on back for 10 seconds

Beginner II (Eel)

  • Consistent forward straight-leg kick
  • Swim 15 feet without floatation
  • SWim 12.5 yards using the elementary backstroke
  • Float on front for 10 seconds
  • Touch the bottom of the shallow end with assistance

Intermediate (Ray)

  • Jump into the deep end and resurface
  • Swim 12.5 yards using freestyle
  • Streamline with shutter kick from self-propelled start
  • Demonstrate rotary breathing
  • Swim 12.5 yards using backstroke

Advanced (Starfish)

  • Dive into the deep end
  • Swim 15 yards using freestyle, breaststroke and backstroke
  • Introduce bi-lateral swim movement

Additional Advanced+ (Starfish)

  • Swim 25 yards butterfly
  • Endurance swim
  • Race dive from starting block
  • Float on back 15 seconds, turn to front for 5 seconds, turn to back for 5 seconds
  • Side Stroke

The YMCA preschool swimming program introduces and builds early swimming and safety skills. As swimmers progress, early stroke development is introduced.

Is your child Ready?

But how do you tell if your child is ready for swim lessons? The YMCA has a few suggestions to help you decide if your preschooler is ready for swim lessons.

  • Can your child separate from you?
  • Can your child listen well and take turns?
  • Can your child obey simple instructions?
  • Does your child enjoy the water and has he/ she expressed an interest in lessons?