Swimming Instruction & Water Safety

Swim Lesson In Progress

The Swim Lesson Application is closed through August 21, 2017.

American Red Cross Swim Lessons

Level 1: Introduction to Water Skills

Introduction to Water Skills

  • Orient participants to the aquatic environment and help them gain basic aquatic skills
  • Help participants begin to develop positive attitudes and safe practices around water


  • No skill prerequisites
  • Participants usually start at about 6 years of age
Level 2: Fundamental Aquatic Skills

Fundamental Aquatic Skills

  • Build on the basic aquatic skill and water safety skill sand concepts learned in Level 1


  • Successful demonstration of the Learn-to-Swim Level 1 exit skills assessment
Level 3: Stroke Development

Stroke Development

  • Build on the skills learned in Levels 1 and 2 to help participants achieve basic water competency in a pool environment.


  • Successful demonstration of the Learn-to-Swim Level 2 exit skills assessment
Level 4: Stroke Improvement

Stroke Improvement

  • Improve participants’ proficiency in performing the swimming strokes that were introduced in Level 3


  • Successful demonstration of the Learn-to-Swim Level 3 exit skills assessment
Level 5: Stroke Refinement

Stroke Refinement

  • Help participants’ refine their performance of all six swimming strokes (i.e., front crawl, back crawl, butterfly, breaststroke, elementary backstroke and sidestroke)
  • Refine strokes so participants swim them with greater efficiency and effectiveness over longer distances


  • Successful demonstration of the Learn-to-Swim Level 4 exit skills assessment
Learn To Swim Fees
  • For UWM students and UREC members lessons cost $16 per lesson for 1 on 1 and $18 per lesson for 2 on 1 lessons.
  • For Non-members the price is $18 for 1 on 1 and $20 for 2 on 1 lessons.
Learn To Swim Fees
UWM Students and University Recreation Members
Student/Member 1 on 1 Lesson (One student and one instructor) $16
Student/Member 2 on 1 Lesson (Two students with one instructor) $18
Non-Members and Milwaukee Area Community
Non-Member/Milwaukee Community 1 on 1 Lesson $18
Non-Member/Milwaukee Community 2 on 1 Lesson $20

Water Safety Instructors Course

American Red Cross Water Safety Instructor

Next course will not be scheduled before January 2017.

Description:The purpose of the American Red Cross Swimming and Water Safety program is to teach people how to be safe in, on or around water and to teach individuals of different ages and abilities how to swim. The Water Safety Instructor course will train instructor candidates to teach water safety, including the Basic Water Rescue course, six levels of the Learn-to-Swim program as well as Parent and Child Aquatics. Certification is current for 2 years. This course is designed for individuals who want to pursue a job as a swimming instructor. Course Length: 30 hours; 30 minutes or Blended Learning Course Length:  minimum 20 hours. Participants MUST attend all class dates.


  • Be at least 16 years of age on or before the final scheduled lesson of this course.
  • Successfully complete the Fundamentals of Instructor Training course.
  • Demonstrate the ability to perform the following swimming skills:
    • Swim the following strokes consistent with Level 4 Stroke Performance Charts
      • Front Crawl (Freestyle) – 25 yards
      • Back Crawl – 25 yards
      • Breaststroke – 25 yards
      • Elementary Backstroke – 25 yards
      • Sidestroke – 25 yards
      • Butterfly – 15 yards
    • Maintain position on back for 1 minute in deep water (floating or sculling)
    • Tread water for 1 minute

For additional information, contact Heath Powell at 414-229-5209 or hbp@uwm.edu

Course Price: $225

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