Youth Swim Lessons


Special COVID-19 Note:  At this time, we are unable to offer the programs listed on this page. As we move through our phased reopening — in keeping with both the Governor’s orders and YMCA protocols — we will return these activities to our schedule. In the meantime, we encourage you to read about our current offerings and protocols by clicking here. For information regarding the reservation of a lane for swimming in our Aquatic Center, click here. Or, check out our Group Exercise classes — both virtual and in person — by clicking here


The Y believes the ability to swim is a critical life skill for every child, teen and adult. Our experienced swim instructors teach the nationally recognized Y Progressive Swim Program with a focus on personal safety, stroke development and rescue techniques. Our swim lesson design encourages positive values and promotes growth in a fun and caring atmosphere.

By educating and partnering with parents and families, we are determined to prevent water accidents in our community.

Pre-registration by level is required. To schedule a swim evaluation to ensure your child starts at the appropriate level, contact Jess Lukas, Aquatics Director, at 802-652-8143 or jlukas@gbymca.org.

First Plunge- Swim Lessons for ages 6 months to 3 years

SKI, Perch, Perch Plus and Parent Pike (see below) are introductory classes that use the bond between caregiver and child to create a safe and welcoming environment. These classes focus on comfort, balance and movement and are designed to allow the children to have fun in the water while caregivers guide them through skills such as bubble blowing, kicking, paddling and jumping. Games and songs are used to create a fun atmosphere and help children feel comfortable in the pool. One adult must accompany each child in the water. Children that are not potty trained must wear a proper swim diaper. There is no swim lesson evaluation required; please register by age. All classes are 30 minutes long.


Shrimp/Kipper/Inia (6-18 months)

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For children from 6 to 18 months, this class introduces parents and their infants to the pool and allows beginning swimmers to progress from water adjustment to basic skills. Instruction helps parents work with their children and focuses upon creating a fun time for parents and children through water games, songs and basic movements.

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Perch (19-36 months) 

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This class continues to provide the highest quality of early water experiences for children from 19 months to 36 months.  Children will work towards swimming independently with support from both the instructor and their caregiver while continuing to develop safety skills and early swimming skills through games, song and playful instruction.

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Perch Plus (29-36 months)

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For children from 29-36 months, Perch Plus is for children that have completed one season of Perch. Caregivers remain in the water with children as instructors work towards preparing children for Parent Pike or even Pike 1. This class is for our more advanced, younger swimmers who are demonstrating bubble blowing skills and swimming independently with flotation and limited caregiver support.

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Parent Pike (3-5 years)

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This transitional class is for children who are not ready to be without an adult caregiver in the water and introduces skills to the child and adult together. By graduation day the caregiver is out of the water and children are comfortable on their own. One adult must accompany each child.

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Gaining Confidence- Swim Lessons for Ages 3-5 years

Our pre-school age swim lessons encourage comfort and independence in the water through skills, games and fun. Children learn safe pool behavior and adjust to the aquatic environment with various, provided flotation aids. Parents are encouraged to be a support, but are not present in the water. Each class is 30 minutes long.


Pike 1 (3-5 years)

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Children are introduced to their first experience swimming without a parent. Instructors work with children to teach independence and confidence in the water through basic swim skills and safety.

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Pike 2 (3-5 years)

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After graduating Pike 1, instructors continue to work with swimmers on independence and confidence in the water. Stroke development concepts are introduced, and less flotation is used as a Pike 2.

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Eel (3-5 years)

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Instructors focus on stroke development, endurance, independence and confidence. Children must be comfortable on their back and putting their face in the water while swimming.

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 Ray/Starfish (3-5 years)

starfish_prpl_rgb_pngInstructors continue stroke development work, as well as proper breathing techniques. Timing of arm & leg movements are introduced.

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GREATER BURLINGTON YMCA LOCATIONS

Pomerleau Family Y
298 College Street
Burlington, VT 05401
802 862 9622 (YMCA)

Camp Abnaki
1252 Abnaki Road
North Hero, VT
802 372 9622 (YMCA)

Additional Program Sites
in Vermont

Franklin, Grand Isle, Washington and Chittenden Counties