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The+Williston+Northampton+School
Learn to Swim Program

While our program emphasizes fun and safety in the water, it differs from other lesson programs in that it is specifically tailored to prepare swimmers for competition in USA Swimming. This starts with basic familiarity and comfort in the water, and progresses all the way to introduction of more advanced techniques (such as butterfly and flip-turns).

Level 1

Introduction to the basic skills necessary for swimming. For nervous or

fearful students. We work on head submersion, front/back body balance, and

developing a love for the water.
 

Specific skills

 

- Flutter kick stationary (wall)

- Balance via prone/dorsal position (wall)

- Up/down breathing mechanism (inhale/exhale); 15 cycles

minimum

- Jump entry

- Merger of prone body position and breathing mechanism,

stationary

- Back Kick stationary (wall)

 

Level 2

Must be comfortable with head underwater and executing breathing

mechanism. We’ll build on this via rotary breathing, kick-based propulsion and

independence in the water.

Specific skills

- Rotary (inhale/exhale) v. up/down breathing, three cycle

minimum

- Dorsal/Back kick locomotive with barbell/noodle/solo

progression

- Flutter kick with board, no breathing mechanism

- Merge flutter kick and breathing mechanism, locomotive

- Independent, non-anchored prone (stomach) floatation with

breathing mechanism

- Independent, non-anchored dorsal (back) floatation

Level 2 swimmers must be able to take three consecutive breaths unassisted and

independent balance/floatation, both prone (stomach) and dorsal (back). We

focus on building strength, confidence and self-sufficiency in the water.

Specific foci:

 

- Back arms: 20, 15, 10, 5 kicks/1 stroke

- Freestyle Catchup stationary (wall); transition to Freestyle

Catchup locomotive with barbell, noodle, instructor’s arm,

solo

- Flutter kick w/board, incrementally longer distances

- Back Kick streamlined, incrementally longer distances
 

Level 3
Must be comfortable on their backs and able to work the width of the

pool. We focus on big-arm freestyle with side breathing, and backstroke.

Specific Skills

- Freestyle drills/parts to whole (catchup, 5-20, breathe bad

side, etc.)

- Flip-turn introduction: somersaults

- Backstroke drills/parts to whole (10 kicks/1 stroke, two

hands, no feet, kick on side, etc.)

- Back turn introduction (six strokes, rollover, somersault)

- Free/Back kick incrementally longer distances

 

Level 4
Must have solid freestyle and backstroke skills. We focus on all four

strokes, endurance and speed for short distances.

Specific skills

- Fly/breast (short axis) strokes

- Further honing of freestyle and backstroke balance, skills,

and related endurance

- Added endurance via longer class duration.