Learn to Swim
Knowing how to swim makes you healthy and keeps you safe. To help teach New Yorkers to swim, Parks is offering free swimming lessons for people of all ages at our indoor pools.
All participants in the Learn to Swim program must have a NYC Parks recreation center membership. Tot participants must be accompanied by a parent or guardian who also has a membership.
Learn more about recreation center membership.
Fall Session: October 21, 2013 - January 4, 2014
Winter Session: January 21, 2014 - March 29, 2014, Registration Opens: Wednesday, January 8
Spring Session: April 7, 2014 - June 14, 2014. Registration Opens: Wednesday, March 26
About Our Registration
Registration for Learn to Swim is conducted through a free online lottery using a secure site. You must have a valid email address to register.
Registration for the fall session begins at 4:00 a.m., on Wednesday, October 9 and ends at 11:59 p.m. on Tuesday, October 15, 2013. Winners are chosen at random. Applicants who are not chosen will be placed on a waiting list. You will be notified by email of the lottery results by Friday, October 18.
- After the lottery is drawn, any remaining spots will be available on a first come, first served basis through a walk-in registration at the center on October 19 from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.
- Do not enter the lottery more than once per Session. Doing so will not increase your chances to win. It will automatically disqualify you or your child from the lottery.
- Parents should submit one application for each of their children. Parents applying for their children can rank their preference for Saturday or Afterschool classes. Lottery selections are non-transferable. If you or your child has won a spot, you cannot give this spot to another person, even if it's another family member.
- If you don't get a spot, we encourage you to apply again for an upcoming session.
- The waiting list will be used to replace anyone who drops out of the program, replacements are chosen from the waiting list randomly. Two consecutive absences without notifying the Citywide Aquatics office will result in the person being replaced by a waitlisted candidate.
Online Registration Assistance
If you need assistance using a computer, Aquatic Specialists staff will be available to help you enter the lottery at each indoor pool at the following times:
- Wednesday, October 9, 4:00 p.m.-6:00 p.m.: Metropolitan, St. John's, St. Mary's, Asser Levy, Chelsea, Hansborough
- Thursday, October 10, 6 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.: Tony Dapolito, Recreation Center 54
- Saturday, October 12 from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.: Metropolitan, St. John's, St. Mary's, Asser Levy, Chelsea, Hansborough, Tony Dapolito, Recreation Center 54
- Tuesday, October 15, 6 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. : Tony Dapolito, Recreation Center 54
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 or guardians 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.
Parents of tots participating in the program must be center members. There must be one parent or guardian for each tot at each session. In order to stay enrolled in class, we must see proof of age on the first day of class. Your tot must be 1½ years of age on the first day of class to participate. Please make sure to bring a birth certificate, passport, or photo identification with date of birth listed for the child on the day of the first class. Documents will be returned after verification is completed. Toddler classes are held on Saturdays.
Child Classes: 6 – 17 Years Old
- Level I: Children at this level learn 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 learn 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. Please make sure to bring a birth certificate, passport, or photo identification with date of birth listed for the child on the day of the first class. Documents will be returned after verification is completed. There are classes available at two different times: on Saturdays, and afterschool from 4:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
- All 6-17 years old Saturday lottery winners must attend water test on October 19 to determine class level.
Adult Classes: 18+ Years Old
Adults must be at the beginner level in order to participate in Learn to Swim classes. A water test will be conducted on the first day of class to determine eligibility. Adults 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.
For more information about Parks’ swim programs,call Parks Citywide Aquatics at (718) 760-6969.For general information about Parks & Recreation,call 311 or (212) NEW-YORK from outside New York City.