Learn to Swim
Knowing how to swim prevents drowning and improves your health, fitness, and safety. To help teach New Yorkers to swim, Parks is offering free swimming lessons for people of all ages at our indoor pools.
All Learn to Swim participants must be members of a recreation center, including Children, Adults and the Parents of Tot’s. Learn more about recreation center membership.
October 16, 2017 – December 30, 2017. Mandatory Water Test on Saturday, October 14, 2017. Registration Opens: Monday, October 2 at 12 noon and ends on Monday, October 9, 2017 at 11:59 p.m.
January 8, 2018 – March 22, 2018. Mandatory Water Test on Saturday, January 6, 2018. Registration Opens: Saturday, December 23, 2017 at 12 noon and ends on Saturday, December 30, 2017 at 11:59 p.m.
March 26, 2018 – June 7, 2018. Mandatory Water Test on Saturday, March 24, 2018. Registration Opens: Monday, March 12, 2018 at 12 noon and ends on Monday, March 19, 2018 at 11:59 p.m.
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. Winners are chosen at random and all Learn to Swim participants must be members of a recreation center, including Children, Adults and the Parents of Tot’s. Applicants who are not chosen will be placed on a waiting list.
You will be notified by email of the lottery results by Thursday, October 12th for session 1, Thursday, January 4th for session 2, and Thursday, March 22nd for session 3.
- 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 as a duplicate.
- 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.
- 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 emailed if a slot becomes available. We are not able to tell you your current place on the waiting list.
- Swimmers who are absent from 2 consecutive classes will be dropped. Children selected for Saturday classes must attend a mandatory water test prior to the first day of classes. If a child misses the mandatory water test and the first day of class, he/she will be dropped from the session and replaced with someone from the waitlist.
Learn to Swim Sites
There are currently no programs available for registration at this time.
About the Classes
Toddlers: 1 1/2 - 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.
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 1 1/2 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.
Children: 6 – 17 Years Old
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.
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 a water test on October 14 for session 1, January 6 for session 2, and March 24 for session 3 to determine class level. Missing the water test will result in a first absence.
If a child misses the water test and the first day of class they will be dropped from the session.
Participants who miss two consecutive classes will be dropped from the program.
Adult Learn to Swim (ages 18+)
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. Swimmers who are absent from two consecutive classes will be dropped.