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Official Website of the New York City Department of Parks & Recreation

Learn to Swim

Learning how to swim improves your health and fitness, keeps you safe in and around the water and prevents drowning. To help teach New Yorkers to swim, NYC Parks is offering free swimming lessons for people of all ages at our outdoor pools this summer.

We offer our summer Learn to Swim classes for tots (1 1/2 - 5 years old), children (6 – 17 years old), and adults (18 years old or older). We also offer adult water aerobics classes, a great shallow water workout to keep cool during the summer.


  • Session I: July 7 through July 21
  • Session II: July 23 through August 6
  • Session III: August 10 through August 21

How to Register

Registration for all Learn to Swim and water aerobics classes will be held through an online lottery.Lottery registration will begin at 4:00 a.m. on Monday, June 15, and will end at noon on Sunday, June 28 for Session I, noon on Monday, July 13 for Session II, and noon on Monday, August 3 for Session III.

  • You or your child may only register for one class per session.
  • If you do not have access to a computer, please reach out to a nearby Computer Resource Center, and ask for its hours.
  • We will email the results of the lottery to you no later than Tuesday, June 30 for Session I, Wednesday, July 15 for Session II, and Wednesday, August 5 for Session III.
  • If you or your children are not selected in the online lottery, you will be placed on a waiting list for this program, and will be called if a slot becomes available. We are not able to tell you your current place on the waiting list.

Learn to Swim Sites

There are currently no programs available for registration at this time.

About the Classes

Toddler Classes: 1 1/2 to 5 years Old

Teach your tot to be ready to learn to swim! In this class, we'll get your tot used to the water, with the help of one of our Aquatic Specialists. Parents help their kids get familiar with the water, become comfortable floating on front and back, and be able to control their breath by blowing bubbles or submerging under water.

You must bring a copy of your tot's birth certificate or an equivalent document on the day of the first class, and must accompany your tot in the water at all class sessions. There must be a ratio of one parent for every tot at each session. Your tot must be 1½ years of age on the first day of class.

Child Classes: 6 – 17 Years Old

Teach your child to be ready to swim. Your child will be placed in one of two levels of classes. A water test will be held on the first day of class to determine your child's level.

  • Level I: Children at this level are learning basic aquatic skills. They'll learn how to safely get into and leave the water, how to control their breath by blowing bubbles, how to float and kick on front and back and move through the water. They'll also learn how to stay safe around the water, and what to do in case of an emergency.
  • Level II: Children at this level are learning how to move their arms and legs together in a swimming motion. We'll work on teaching children to swim without assistance, and improve on skills that they learned in Level I. They'll be able to understand dangerous water conditions, and how to assist a swimmer in a water emergency.

Your child must be 6 years of age on the first day of class in order to participate in the children's program. You must bring a copy of your child's birth certificate or an equivalent document on the day of the first class.

Adult Learn to Swim (ages 18+)

Learn to swim with the help of our trained aquatics professionals. Learn basic level swimming and safety skills including the development of breath control, floating, gliding, kicking on front and back, rotary breathing, arm strokes on front and back, safety skills and entries and exits. Adults must be at the beginner level in order to participate in Learn to Swim classes.

Adult Water Aerobics (ages 18+)

Enjoy a workout led by trained aquatics professionals. Keep cool in the summer heat while reducing risk of muscle or joint injury with these great aerobic exercises. You do not need to know how to swim to participate in water aerobics exercises. All water aerobics classes will be held in the shallow end of the pool.

Advanced Swim Classes (ages 6-17)

Advanced Swim Classes will be held Monday-Friday from August 24 through August 28 for any advanced level swimmer who wants to improve their skills in the water by learning elementary backstroke, breaststroke, back crawl, butterfly, and advanced safety skills. For additional information, please call (718) 760-6969, extension 0.

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