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September 07, 2018

Why I Chose A Private Swim School

As you may know by now, I love water, the beach, and I'm a Pisces. BUT I can't swim. As in, I don't know how to. I took swimming lessons as a kid, and honestly, the smell of chlorine still makes my stomach knot. My husband and I always agreed that swimming lessons wouldn't be optional for our kids. It's an important life skill, and I want (and need) my kids to be confident in the water -- a skill I don't have.

And so, we put them into pools from when they were babies, and in Parent and Child classes. For the most part, they enjoyed it, but as they became toddlers, they each (and at separate times) developed fears. Fears of what, I'm not sure -- maybe drowning, maybe floating, maybe not having a strong footing, maybe being alone. They fought the lessons and so, we decided to park it. While the lessons were important to us, I didn't want to create an environment or experience where they hated the concept of swimming.

A couple of years later, I was ready to re-introduce them to the pool, and I knew it wouldn't be easy. Friends suggested I look into private swimming schools, and potentially semi-private lessons. It meant they could go into the pool together, and even at the same time. I was hesitant for one main reason -- the cost. I knew it would be more expensive, but I didn't completely understand the value. Then I visited Splashville.

Splashville has been around for quite a few years in Vaughan, and many of my friends enroll (or have enrolled) their kids in swimming lessons there. They have two pools -- one lap and the other splash -- and offer swimming classes from ages 2 through adult. Their guards are Lifesaving and Red Cross Certified and offer low ratio class sizes: 3-1 for regular classes, 2-1 for semi-private and private lessons also available. The pools are warm (88 degrees Fahrenheit), and salt-water, and there are lots of open windows for viewing.

So there's the goods -- the basics. But let me tell you what they truly offer:

  • A kind approach to swimming. My girls have been re-introduced to the water with patience and motivation. Our teacher is encouraging and always smiling, and truly gets excited when the girls successfully complete a drill or skill.
  • An approachable staff. If I've ever had a concern or question, it's dealt with promptly. There is always a staff member available to chat, and the instructors also make themselves available if you need. 
  • The ratio. I mentioned the numbers above, but what this meant for me was that I could have both kids in class at the same time. Learning different skills. For busy parents, this is a win.
  • At your own pace. Splashville offers weekly classes in the Fall or Winter Terms, or Accelerated Programs in the summer. If you're interested in semi-private or private, you can customize your own schedule (we swam twice a week all summer)
  • Badges and Curriculum. Everyone wants to see their kids pass and succeed. Here, you'll learn (as a parent) what it is they need to accomplish and the tracking system. 

In the course of a summer, my kids have gone from two timid young kids to kids who are super excited about suiting up for lessons every week. Not only are they happy about going to swim, they bounce into and out of the pool. They're proud to show me their new skills (even in the bathtub) and talk about their instructor multiple times a week. And the progress they've made each class is visible. They get quality time to learn and practice, because, really, how else are you going to master a skill? 

And most importantly, they are developing a love of swimming and the appreciation of the water. 

To me, this is invaluable.  

And that's worth every penny.

PROMO: Fall Registration is currently underway. To register your child for swim lessons at Splashville, please visit their website. All Fall Registrants receive a free Splashville swim bag.

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Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post. All opinions expressed on Simply Suppa are my own.

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