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Swim Lessons

All Ages

Knowing how to swim can save your life — or even someone else's. Taught by certified instructors, our swim lessons will give you lifelong skills to help you be safe in and around the water. And you just might develop a lifelong passion for swimming. 

There's more to YMCA swim lessons than just learning to swim. Our swim lessons build self-confidence and show everyone — infants through to adults — that they can achieve their goals with a little hard work and support from others.  

Swim lessons are included with your membership fee. Registration is required — join at any time throughout the year, space permitting. See the program schedule for availability and visit any of our Health and Wellness locations in person to register. 

Learn to Swim Conversion Chart

 

View the Learn to Swim Conversion Chart for City of Waterloo, City of Kitchener, Red Cross, and Life Saving Society Programs.

Swim Lesson Report Cards 

Wondering how your child is progressing through the YMCA swim program? Our online report card system is here to help.  

With online report cards you receive a number of benefits: 

  • Convenience — view your child's report at any time. 

  • Progress — see your child's progress as they complete each level. 

  • Record — both instructors and parents will always have a record of your child's progress report. 

  

Select the location where your child swims below to access their report card. Use your child’s member ID number (found on your member portal) to access their report card. 

Report cards are typically updated sessionally in March, June, August, and December for swimmers who have attended a minimum of three swim lessons in the assessment period. Reports may also be updated throughout the session if participants have completed their level mid-session. If you have questions about your child’s swim lesson report card, please contact our aquatic team.  

Watch this short video to learn how to access swim lesson report cards.

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Splashers and Bubblers (3 months – 2 years) 

This introductory swim program builds water confidence in young swimmers as they learn to enjoy and move through water with a parent or caregiver. 

Please see our program schedule for class availability. Visit any of our locations in person to register.

Locations: A.R. Kaufman (Kitchener), Chaplin (Cambridge), Guelph, Stork (Waterloo), and Stratford

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Preschool Swim Lessons (Ages 3 – 5)

For children ages 3 to 5, YMCA Preschool Swim Lessons will introduce your child to the basics of swimming.

Each level in the program has been designed with your child's natural growth and development in mind. We know each child is unique, so our YMCA Swim Instructors encourage your child to progress at their own pace to reach their potential.

Please see our program schedule for class availability. Visit any of our locations in person to register.

Locations: A.R. Kaufman (Kitchener), Chaplin (Cambridge), Guelph, Stork (Waterloo), and Stratford

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Learn to Swim (Ages 6 – 12)

The YMCA Learn to Swim program is a four-level program that introduces your beginner swimmer to foundational aquatic activities. They will improve their body awareness and motor skills as they submerge, kick, roll, and jump in the water. They will be competent swimmers on their front and back when they complete the entire program. 

Please see our program schedule for class availability. Visit any of our locations in person to register.

Locations: A.R. Kaufman (Kitchener), Chaplin (Cambridge), Guelph, Stork (Waterloo), and Stratford

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YMCA Star Program (Ages 6 – 12)

The YMCA Star Program introduces your continuing swimmer to elementary backstroke, breaststroke, side stroke, and increases their swimming distance to 350m by the end of Star 4. The optional items give your child opportunities to explore competitive swimming, synchronized swimming, water polo, and aquatic fitness.

 

Please see our program schedule for class availability. Visit any of our locations in person to register.

Locations: A.R. Kaufman (Kitchener), Chaplin (Cambridge), Guelph, Stork (Waterloo), and Stratford

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YMCA Star Leadership Program (Ages 6 – 12)

The YMCA Star Leadership program allows your competent and confident swimmer to build on their strong aquatic skills to learn to safely help others who are in trouble in the water, basic first aid skills, and to improve their physical fitness. Each level has a component of learning how to teach others, and optional items include advanced swim skills, competitive swimming, synchronized swimming, water polo, and aquatic fitness. 

Please see our program schedule for class availability. Visit any of our locations in person to register.

Locations: A.R. Kaufman (Kitchener), Chaplin (Cambridge), Guelph, Stork (Waterloo), and Stratford

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Adult Swim Lessons (Ages 13+)

Adult swim lessons are delivered in a group setting, which is individualized to meet your needs. Whether you are learning to swim for the first time, wanting to improve your stroke technique or looking to increase your endurance, our certified swim instructors will work with you to help you accomplish your goals. Lessons are for beginner, intermediate, and advanced swimmers, ages 13+.  

Adult swim lessons are offered on a weekly basis and require registration each week. Registration opens seven days in advance of each class. 

Please see our program schedule for class availability.  

Locations: A.R. Kaufman (Kitchener), Chaplin (Cambridge), Guelph, Stork (Waterloo), and Stratford

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Women's Only Swim Lessons (Ages 13+)

If you want to learn how to swim in a safe and private women’s only environment, this program is for you. Lessons are delivered in a group setting, led by a woman swim instructor. Whether you are a complete beginner, wanting to improve your stroke technique, or looking to increase your endurance, our certified swim instructors will work with you to help you accomplish your goals. 


This swim was developed in conversation with an equity deserving population, and is open for women ages 13+. During this swim time, only women staff are on the pool deck, which is only accessible from the women's and women’s plus change rooms. Roller blinds installed on the windows provide privacy for participants.

Women’s only swim lessons are offered on a weekly basis and require registration each week. Registration opens seven days in advance of each class. Non-members may register on the day of the class with the purchase of a day pass.

Please see our program schedule for class availability.

Locations: A.R. Kaufman (Kitchener), Guelph

Newcomer Youth Women's Only Swim Lessons (Ages 11 – 18)

During this eight-week group swim lesson program, participants will learn swim and water safety skills.

 

This swim was developed in conversation with an equity deserving population, and is open for women ages 11 to 18. During this swim time, only women staff are on the pool deck, which is only accessible from the women's and women’s plus change rooms. Roller blinds installed on the windows provide privacy for participants.


Register through the link below, or at the membership desk at any of our health and wellness locations. For more information, email Lisa.

Locations: A.R. Kaufman (Kitchener), Guelph

Upcoming Sessions:

A.R. Kaufman Family YMCA (Kitchener)
Sundays, February 5 – March 26
1:45 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

Guelph YMCA-YWCA 
Saturdays, February 4 – March 25
4:05 p.m. – 4:50 p.m.

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Private Swim Lessons

Private swim lessons are offered in a one-to-one format or as semi-private (groups of two or three – participants must be at a similar skill level and sign up together as a group). Small ratios and flexible times make private lessons a great way to complement your weekly group swim lesson or provide the extra attention needed to achieve you or your child's swimming goals. All classes are 30 minutes long. 

 

Participants must register for the entire session. Refunds will not be issued for missed classes. 

 

Private Swim Lesson Fees 


Members:  

$20 per class  

Semi Private Lesson: Register additional participants for $10 per participant, per class 

 

Non-Members: 
$25 per class  

Semi Private Lesson: Register additional participants for $12.50 per participant, per class 

 

Please see our program schedule for class availability. Visit any of our locations in person to register. 

 

Locations: A.R. Kaufman (Kitchener), Chaplin (Cambridge), Guelph, Stork (Waterloo), and Stratford. 

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