Here’s a guide to enrolling your child in the right level swim class.
Children grow and develop at different rates. It’s perfectly normal. So, you don’t want to enroll kids in swim class based on age alone.
Different Schools Have Different Criteria
Every swimming school will have different programs and various levels for young swimmers. Classes are loosely grouped by age and schools often offer some online assessment criteria for enrollment.
Questions may include:
- Will your child go underwater voluntarily?
- Can your child swim 10-15 yards non-stop?
You may do well to instead first find a swim school you like. Then see which classes they offer and what enrollment criteria they have for each class.
Here you can read about 10 factors to consider when selecting a swim school.
It’s important to find a school that:
- Will always place your child’s safety first
- Will always be mindful of your child’s uniqueness
- Has well-trained swim teachers who understand kids
- Has small group classes (Low teacher to student ratio)
Why Your Child Needs the Right Swim Level Class
Once you have a school selected, starting your child in the best level swim class is so very important.
Your child will become bored and lose interest if a class isn’t challenging enough. Yet, a class that’s too advanced may leave your child feeling lost and discouraged.
But you know the one factor that can most diminish your child’s ability to learn to swim?
That factor is fear.
How Fear Affects Learning To Swim
Fear plays a powerful role in a child’s swimming experience. But maybe not in the way you think.
Fear will actually reduce the body’s physical ability to float. This has a negative impact on buoyancy and makes learning to swim much more difficult—and likely scarier—for the child.
That’s why Njswim always follows a natural progression through our swim curriculum that all starts with learning to float.
Once a child learns proper buoyancy, balance, and breath control, it’s much easier for them to learn proper stroke technique.
This natural, Zen-like introduction to the water makes students love the water for life.
Learn To Float
Njswim’s nationally recognized swim school curriculum is based on our “learn to float” philosophy—learning balance and buoyancy in the water.
Our students are first taught to recognize how their body will best achieve buoyancy with little or no effort. Then teachers focus on balance and breath control. Students feel more comfortable and safer in the water—as they happily and confidently progress with their swim lessons.
Njswim’s Swim Evaluation
When a child first joins our Njswim family, we perform a short in-water assessment to figure out which level is the best fit for your child. The assessment takes less than three minutes.
Our teachers are highly trained in child development, which helps them quickly and properly assess the child’s current skills and best level fit.
Initial swim levels are determined by a combination of ability, swim experience, and age.
Once in class, their teacher constantly monitors their progress. They know when it’s time for their student to move up to the next level. A class doesn’t have a start or end date.
Classes run year round on rolling admissions and each kid moves up at their own rate when it’s right for them.
Our teachers take a gentle approach to teaching. We encourage every child to feel safe and have their own unique experience. But there is definitely one common denominator—we encourage all children to have fun!
Njswim Skill Levels
Following is a brief description and highlights of our swim levels. Check out our full class level descriptions here.
Water Babies—3-30 months
- Babies are introduced to water acclimation, breath control, coordination, floating, balance, buoyancy, and comfort
Pre-Pre | Preschool
- Breath control, supported floating, entering and exiting the pool safely
Level I—Aquatic Adaption
- Breath control, buoyancy, supported kicking and paddling, submerging, fundamentals of proper body position
Level IA—Buoyancy, Balance, and Breath Control
- Continuation of basic swim skills, breath exchange, prone gliding, paddling, kicking, finding float position, introduction to backstroke
Level IA | IIB—Transition to Propulsion
- Finding float positions, turning to back float unassisted, becoming proficient in swimming for longer distances
Level IIB—Endurance Development
- Moves from buoyance skills to stroke technique
- Swimmers go longer distances, develop strength and endurance, introduction of backstroke and treading water
Level IIB | II—Transition to Stroke Technique
- Backstroke refined and we introduce long axis swimming skills, freestyle, and treading water endurance
Level II—Long Axis Swimming
- Introduction of advanced swim strokes, rotary breathing, backstroke skills
Level IIA—Stroke Technique
- Builds endurance in freestyle and backstroke, proper body mechanics and buoyance for breaststroke and butterfly
Level III—Advanced Stroke Technique
- Focus on developing efficiency for racing; proficiency in freestyle, backstroke, and breaststroke, introduction to butterfly stroke
Power Swim—Kids 7-14
- For kids who enjoy swimming and water sports
- Teaches proper stroke technique, endurance training, fun water activities
Swim Team Prep
- Builds strength and endurance and instills values of positive competition
At Njswim, we enjoy nothing more than watching our students gain confidence and personal strength both in and out of the water.
Our seven NJ swim school locations are:
- Florham Park
- Warren (reopening soon)