Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Mustang Club Swimming Lessons

It's time to put on your Michale Phelps face and get swimming!  Mustang Club Swimming Lessons are back for the second year.  This is one of my favorite times of the year because I enjoy watching students learn to be safer in and around the water and become more confident in their swimming skills.

As a swimming coach of all ages, I enjoy teaching the BASIC skills of swimming as well as develop swimmers into Division I, II and III athletes.  When I started coaching at Breck I got a vision of creating a program where the Breck swimmers and divers would give back to the Breck community by teaching swimming lessons to the younger students.  Last year that dream can to fruition with Mustang Club Swimming Lessons.

The Mustang Club Swimming program is unique because upper school student-athletes (swimmers and divers) teach the swimming lessons to the lower school students.  The program teaches the upper school students responsibility, leadership, community service, and techniques for teaching swimming to young children, primarily beginners.  The lower school students learn how to be safe in and around the water, better their swimming skills, have fun while interacting with their friends and learning from the upper school students.

Last year we had 9 upper school student teacher volunteers and 22 lower school swimmers in the program and this year we have 16 upper school student teacher volunteers and 30 lower school swimmers!  The lower school students are divided up by ability and place with an upper school student teacher and taught at their skill level in small groups (usually 2 teachers/4-5 students).  The students will learn basic skills from floating and swimming paddle stroke all the way up to butterfly and diving.  All dependent on skill level of course.  There is always time to play in the water with the upper school student teachers and just truly enjoy the water.

Even though this program is starting it's second year, last year was extremely successful.  I had emails and calls from parents telling me how much their child's swimming skills and confidence improved because of the program.  In fact, one lower school student was so timid in the water that we put him with a single instructor.  By the end of the 5 weeks, he was swimming with a ton of confidence.  During summer break I was informed he was jumping in the lake and swimming back to the dock all by himself!!!  Not only is that a proud moment for him and his parents but also for that upper school student teacher and me knowing he is safer and more confident in the water.

The overall goal is twofold for lower school it's to develop safe swimmers, improve swimming skills and create confidence.  For the upper school students, it's to develop leadership skills, learn how to teach a skill they enjoy and give back to the Breck community.  Most importantly, it's for everyone to have a lot of fun while learning new skills.

If you are ever interested in seeing this program in action, we are in the pool on Monday's from 3:45-4:30pm on Monday, April 10th, 17th, 24th and May 1st and 8th.

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