FAQ

Frequently asked questions

What is the SwimRight Method and how is it different from the rest?


The core purpose at SwimRight Academy is to teach and inspire children to be water safe. By using our uniquely developed SwimRight Method, we do just that. The SwimRight Method is a learn-to-swim curriculum that uses the swim, float, swim technique as its foundation. Before teaching any of the actual strokes, the SwimRightMethod focuses on providing children with the knowledge required to be confident and safe in and around the water. All of our students are first taught the skill of rolling over onto their backs to breathe. Not only does this provide the proper body positioning for learning the strokes later on, but it gives children the ultimate tool for saving themselves in an emergency. While other swim methods teach children to breathe by lifting their heads up, we have found that only makes them tired. If a child can relax and rest in their back float then they have a much better chance of survival. Not only does the SwimRight Method teach and inspire children to be water safe, but it also incorporates motivational tools along the way to make learning fun. The Method has 8 levels of learning. Each level has a fun name attached to it along with a sticker reward system for every skill or drill that is learned. All students in the program will receive color coded swim caps along the way to recognize their achievements and inspire them to move up to the next level. Additionally, all students in the program will get their own swim book to help keep track of their progress. As they move up from one level to another, they will receive ribbons recognizing graduation from a particular level. Besides learning various skills in each level, kids will experience something very unique to our program – the survival tests. Through these survival tests, we provide both the parents and the children with the confidence of knowing that their child can survive in a real-life situation. This is a very unique and valued part of the SwimRight Method and our program. We are proud to say that we truly put our teachings to the test!




How long does it take to learn to swim?


It doesn’t have to take long to learn, but becoming a swimmer is a life skill that takes time and practice. The SwimRight Method is extremely easy to learn and very efficient. No bad habits are learned during the process, and students don’t have to be re-taught as they progress to the advanced stages. However, becoming a swimmer depends on many things. The child’s age and willingness to learn, how often they come for lessons, and what results the parents are looking for are all variables that should be considered. We strongly recommend that lessons be continued until the child is a confident, competent swimmer. They should be comfortable in any depth of water and able to safely swim and breathe for extended distances.




How often should they attend swim lessons?


Like everything a child learns, practice is critical. But we believe consistency is just as important. Swim lessons that are taken once a week throughout the entire year will keep building on this life skill and maintain its pertinence in their minds - therefore reducing the potential for accidents. Some students may become distressed by the learning process and increasing the frequency of lessons during this time can help them through this difficulty. Please talk to us about your goals for swim lessons. We can always make the learning process as gentle as you like or speed up the process with a more aggressive approach.




Why are your classes ongoing with a perpetual billing cycle?


As mentioned above, consistency is key! Our billing cycle allows for consistency and flexibility! There are no terms or sessions that require you to wait in order to change your schedule or class. You will also not risk losing your day, time, or teacher while paying monthly.




Which is better for children under the age of 2: Parent-Tot or private lessons?


This all depends on what you want for your children. If you would like to be hands on in introducing your child to the water, getting them comfortable, and learning how to handle them safely in the pool then Parent-Tot is a good option. After they have learned the basic skills in this class and are ready to move on, private lessons will be the next step. If the goal for your child is independence and water safety but you prefer not to get wet, private lessons are the best place to begin.




Why does my child have to wear a cap?


Our academy uses color-coded swim caps to identify the level of each child in our program. We require students to wear their SwimRight Academy swim caps, which are important for several reasons. It helps us recognize skill levels, keeps hair off the swimmer’s face, and gives the student a specific goal to strive for. As your child’s ability increases, they will earn a different cap each time they advance to a new level. It is also important for our staff to know on sight which children are safe to be in the deep end.




What are survival tests?


The main goal of our program is to make sure that every child is water safe. Within our teaching curriculum we have 2 survival tests which help us to see the child’s progress as well as giving the child, parent, and the instructor the peace of mind that the child is striving to be water safe and can react in a real-life situation. Both tests are performed while kids are fully clothed. They enter the pool by surprise and use the skills that they have learned to save themselves. The first survival test requires the child to roll to their back and float for an unlimited amount of time. The second survival test requires the child to roll on their back, rest, and then swim back to the wall.




If a child is scared to learn, should the parent be involved in the process or not?


No one is better than mom or dad! If a child becomes distressed during lessons, they will likely benefit if parents aren't visible. This enables them to focus their attention on the instructor and what they are being asked to do. Our instructors are all fully trained to handle any situation that may arise throughout the lesson. When a child sees their parent instill trust in their instructor by walking away, it allows them to do the same. As they become more skilled, they will want their parents within sight to show off their new abilities in the water.




Why are your private lessons for infants only 20 minutes long?


There are many reasons why we swim with our students for 20 minutes at a time. Physically, infants, and toddlers will only be able to properly execute athletic activity for a short amount of time. They can easily become tired and generally have a short attention span. If the student is not a baby or a toddler and does not have fear and/or anxiety, we strongly recommended a group lesson.




Why do you strongly recommend group lessons for all students?


There is a different vulnerability with water and swim lessons than other activities children participate in. Because of this, we see a much stronger progression with group lessons. Children in group lessons are able to watch their peers and push themselves to learn new skills in an environment that promotes teamwork and healthy competition. We typically only recommended private lesson for infants and toddlers or those that are working with fear.




When can babies start swim lessons?


Babies can be introduced to the water as soon as the umbilical cord and any other surgeries from birth are healed. Ultimately, parents should check with their pediatrician. If their doctor has told them that it is safe to put their infant in the water, we are happy to start them on the path to water safety.




Why start lessons so young?


Babies have not yet developed specific fears, and the pool is a womb-like environment that feels very natural to them. Young babies have an automatic breath holding reflex and are more comfortable on their backs, which makes learning the back float easier. This dynamic can change as early as 3-6 months or when they start rolling over. The younger the baby, the more likely they are to accept being in the water. Exposure to swimming provides the ideal exercise as they are not restricted by gravity and benefit from the cardiovascular exercise that it provides. Starting young gives babies an advantage in learning basic swimming, improves bilateral coordination and balance, introduces them to a structured learning environment, and provides them with an opportunity to increase social skills.




What can you teach babies at such a young age?


Until babies learn to crawl, they are not aware that they can choose to go from one place to another. If they do back float independently, it is mainly because they don’t know they actually have the option of doing something else. Once they learn to roll over and crawl, they will seemingly regress because now they may begin to experiment with ways to get out of having to back float. Also, until they are mobile there is no danger of them crawling into a swimming pool. We like to get the infants acquainted with submerging and gliding underwater, kicking, standing on the platforms, and (most importantly) the back float. Our goal is to keep the lesson experience as peaceful, fun, and happy as possible.




If they learn at a young age, will they start to forget if they stop lessons for an elongated amount of time?


No, they can remember - as proven through our numerous success stories describing how babies and children have managed to save themselves in the event that they have accidentally fallen into a body of water. This of course is dependent on the skill level. The more swim skills a child has, the more they are likely to retain over time; however, it is very likely that the child will lose confidence if they take a long break. The skills will remain, but the regression in confidence can inhibit the likelihood that they will be able to save themselves. We recommend that children NEVER stop taking swim lessons until they have proven themselves to be consistently safe in and around the water.




Will children always be able to perform these safety skills in an emergency?


Because of the nature of the SwimRight® Method and the testing we do throughout the progression, we have found that the children CAN manage to save themselves in unfamiliar pools and emergency situations. Our many success stories are proof; however, there is no guarantee. Children should never swim or be near water without constant, careful adult supervision.




If they resist learning to swim, should they be forced to take lessons?


The question is: what do you want? According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, fatal drowning remains the leading cause of injury-related death for children ages 1-4. And it is the second leading cause of injury-related death for all children under 14 years old. Water can be a scary environment for children and appropriately so! However, with skill comes confidence; as they learn respect for the water and how to be safe in it, it will become the fun, healthy activity we know it to be. With your commitment and perseverance, we will achieve these goals!




If my child is upset while learning to swim, will they be afraid of the water?


It is quite natural for a young child to be upset. After all, this is an unsafe environment until they:

  • Learn to trust the instructor and themselves
  • Practice enough swimming so that it becomes easier
  • Understand why they are learning these skills
Once these objectives have been achieved and the child makes the decision that swimming is fun, the crying will stop and they will enjoy the activity. How long this takes is dependent on the parent’s commitment and the child’s willingness to participate. Discontinuing lessons is almost guaranteed to produce a child who is fearful and unhappy in the water, and it may take months or even years to convince the child that this activity can be fun.




Why is an award system so important?


We feel that our award system is one of the things that set us apart from the rest. Each new student receives a Student Progress Book. Because we follow a specific progression, each level teaches a number of different skills. After the child masters each skill, they receive a sticker for that skill in their progress book. The stickers allow the students to follow their progress and see what they have learned. It is also important for a new or substitute instructor to identify where the child has left off so there is not any redundancy or wasted lesson time.




Why doesn’t SwimRight Academy allow the use of floatation devices during their lessons?


Students who have experienced floating devices are generally more comfortable and willing to be independent in the water. They are also more inclined to feel and trust their natural buoyancy in the water. However, floatation devices can create a false sense of security. Most children get to a point where they refuse to swim without them. They often do not realize how much they actually NEED to wear them, which can cause trouble if they accidentally come off, forget to wear them, or try to swim without them before they are skilled enough to save themselves. Because of the danger of this happening, we do not recommend the use of any floating devices at all. It is far better for children to learn the proper skills needed to save themselves in an emergency.