In August, the Fox Valley Family YMCA adopted and implemented Y USA’s new safety-centric Swim Lesson curriculum. The updated swim program has evolved to better meet the needs of the people the Y serves.

“I can confidently say that there is no other swim program in the area that exceeds our level of combining safety with proper swim mechanics,” said FVFY Aquatics Director Kevin Satler.

The latest evolution of Y swim lessons accommodates students of varying abilities and helps foster a sense of achievement as swimmers progress between levels.

“The new lesson guides make the curriculum easier for instructors to teach and easier for kids to learn. Every lesson is different, which makes it exciting for the kids,” said Alissa Keebler, swim lesson coordinator.

Through this approach, advanced swimmers flow more easily to higher levels while swimmers who need more instruction can learn at their own pace. “The new curriculum allows kids to explore in the water – flying like superheroes or pretending to be submarines – in search of the best way to move through water,” said Keebler.

To make this change, FVFY sent swim instructors to training in Iowa to become certified in the new safety-based curriculum. Keebler took it a step further.

Maribeth Mees, the Y USA’s director of leadership development and training, approached Keebler with the opportunity to pursue Swim Lesson Trainer status, in which she would be able to train new staff and staff from other Y’s in the new swim curriculum. Y USA funded the three-day trip to Atlanta.

“Moving forward, we can ensure that all of the new staff we bring on board are receiving the highest quality training in swim safety and instruction,” said Steph Majewski, FVFY interim CEO. “On top of that, we now have the ability to host and train staff from other Y’s. Our goal is not only to teach swim safety in our pool, but to reach other Y’s and their members. Bigger picture is teaching water safety beyond our community.”