Swimming Lessons at Garden of the Gods Club
For many, summer time means extra time spent outdoors, splashing in the pool, and absorbing the warm sun. To ensure that your children are safe when swimming or when near a pool, signing them up for swimming lessons is of utmost importance. Not only will they enjoy learning how to swim, but they will gain a valuable life-long skill. To give you a peek into the summer swimming lessons offered at Garden of the Gods Club, we spoke with Tracey Holman, recreation center manager at Garden of the Gods Club. We invite you to “listen in” with our conversation below.
Garden of the Gods Club (GGC): What makes swimming lessons at Garden of the Gods Club’s Recreation Center a summer activity that children and parents look forward to?
Tracey Holman (TH): All of our instructors are Water Safety Instructor (WSI)-certified through the American Red Cross. They all have experience teaching swimming lessons, and they’re very comfortable with the students. The instructors are also part of a swim team, so they have a deeper understanding of stroke development. Students learn a variety of swimming skills, including bobs, how to blow bubbles, kicking, streamline, free-style arms, and more.
GGC: From your perspective, why is it important that kids learn how to swim?
TH: Well, just from a safety perspective, you never know what kind of situation your children might find themselves in. They could be near a lake, pond, pool, or other body of water that you haven’t planned for. In reality, death by drowning is more frequent than most people think. Knowing how to swim can be a life-saving skill that your child may need at some point in his or her life.
GGC: Do you have any examples of how swimming lessons have helped your students enjoy the water more?
TH: Yes. There was one little girl in my class last summer who was not sure what to make of the water at first. She was very clingy, but by the end of the summer she was diving down to the bottom of the pool to get toys, and she was swimming by herself. She ended up really enjoying it!
GGC: What advice would you give to a parent whose child is apprehensive about taking swimming lessons?
TH: I would recommend that they come with their child to meet the teacher before lessons start. This helps the child build trust with the new teacher. Parents are also encouraged to bring a favorite toy for the water, and to let the child know that the parents will be there the entire time. These measures help with familiarity and can make swimming lessons a great, positive experience.
GGC: What types of fun games do you incorporate into swimming lessons at the Recreation Center?
TH: We like to integrate various games such as diving to get toys from the bottom of the pool or doing bobs. During the last five minutes of class, the students get to pick an activity they would like to do. Getting to pick what they want to do is a great motivator for them.
GGC: Is there anything else that you think parents should know before registering their children for swimming lessons?
TH: I think that it’s important for parents to have their children in swimming lessons on a consistent basis throughout the summer. Children see the most benefit if they do two lessons a week for at least five weeks. This type of consistency reinforces proper technique, and it prevents the children from practicing bad habits.
GGC: Besides swimming lessons, what other types of summer activities do you offer?
TH: We actually just started a swim team. This program runs from 7:15 am to 8:30 am Monday through Thursday mornings. Participants receive great, personalized instruction on stroke technique, and they work on building endurance. Swim team is a great experience because the swimmers also get to learn about what it feels like to work out with a group and what it feels like to be a part of a team. We also just started an adult advanced swim class. It is going very well. Swimmers not only get to work on their technique, but they also get a great workout. Being part of an adult swim class is great motivation in the summer to get up in the morning and do something. This class is on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday mornings from 6 am to 7:15 am.
Learning how to swim is truly an important life skill. If you are interested in membership at Garden of the Gods Club, we invite you to contact Tracey Kalata, director of membership, at 719.520.4988 or email@example.com. You can also stop by to chat with our membership team about your place in the GGC community. If you are already a GGC Member and would like to enroll your children in swimming lessons or swim team, or if you would like to join the adult advanced swim class, we encourage you to contact Recreation Center Manager Tracey Holman at 719.329.6905 or firstname.lastname@example.org.