Hamilton Area YMCA

About Swim Lessons

Choosing the Right Swim Lesson

The Hamilton Area YMCA follows the YMCA nationwide swim program teaching swimmers of all ages and abilities. Our swim lessons accommodate varying abilities to help foster a sense of achievement as swimmers’ progress between stages. Our program teaches SAFETY in and around the water, along with proper stroke technique. 

Which lesson is right for you or your child?

Click here for Swim Lesson Selector

The Hamilton Area YMCA offers a variety of choices for classes. If you are looking for individual lessons, please see our Private/Semi-private offerings. 

For Group Lessons, each new student will complete a skill evaluation to better place them. 

There are three general categories of Y Swim Lessons

  • Swim Starters develops water enrichment and aquatic readiness in children ages 6 months to 3 years. This category focuses on developing swim readiness skills through fun and confidence-building experiences. Parents also learn how to supervise children in the water, how to prevent accidents and how to plan for emergencies.

  • Swim Basics develops personal water safety and basic swimming skills in students of all ages. Swimmers develop a high level of comfort in the water by practicing safe water habits, engaging in underwater exploration, and learning how to swim to safety and exit if they fall into a body of water.

  • Swim Strokes introduces and refines stroke technique in older students (school age, teens and adults). Having mastered the fundamentals, students learn additional water safety skills and build stroke technique, developing skills that prevent chronic disease, increase social-emotional and cognitive well-being and foster a lifetime of physical activity.

At the Y, we believe swimming is a life skill

Swimming is also a life-saving skill that everyone should have the opportunity to learn. The Y has been teaching people how to swim for more than 110 years! We use skill-based instruction that maximizes physical activity, emphasizes safety, and elevates character development to engage families in our community. We have certified, caring staff trained to handle swimmers of all abilities and all ages. Y swim lessons stress positive values and give kids the opportunity to practice them, growing kids’ self-esteem and self-worth, while they have a great time.

Watch Cassidy’s story to see how Y lessons help teach her a life-saving skill. 


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Swim Evaluations

Current Swimmers will be evaluated during their session for the appropriate stage placement. Participants will receive a session progression report. Swimmers must be meet all requirements to move onto the next stage. 

New/Returning Swimmers (ages 3+) registering for a higher level class other than Acclimation will be required to take a swim evaluation prior to registering for a stage. These evaluations will enhance your swimmer's experience by ensuring they are in the correct skill level.  

Please click here to reserve a swim evaluation or contact aquatics@hamiltonymca.org to complete a swim assessment.

Class Communications

Parents/participants please visit the Member Service Desk to ensure that your contact information is correct. In the case of emergencies/notifications, we communicate via emails and text alerts.

Make-up, Unforeseen Closure & Cancellation Policy

All refunds/credits must be made within the same session.

Make ups are NOT provided for missed classes. This includes absences for personal travel, or conflicting activity schedules. 

  • If a class is cancelled due to weather, maintenance, or emergency related closure, we will process a credit VOUCHER to the participant’s membership account. 

Snow/Weather Closure

  • The pool will close for thunder or lighting for a minimum of 30 minutes since the last occurrence. 
  • Communication will be sent via text alert or email for any updates, please do not confront staff about timing of notifications as we need to clear the pool area prior to notifying. 
  • Snow Closures are subject to the facility closure and will be communicated via email and text alert. 

Emergency Closure

  • If an emergency occurs on the pool deck, please exit quickly from the pool area following directions by Aquatic Staff. 
  • Safety is the #1 priority for all guests and this will allow staff to provide care as needed. 
  • An emergency timeline can vary depending on the needs of the occurrence. 
  • A credit VOUCHER will be provided in case of a closure. 

Membership Information

  • Request for credits and refunds must be processed at the Member Service Desk by the end of the session in order for credit to be given. 
  • Membership and Joiner’s fees/dues are non-refundable and non-transferable. 


  • If you upgrade your membership during a session, the difference in program fees is non-refundable.
  • Membership refund requests accompanied by a physician note will be considered by the Member Initiatives Director Kailin at kvena@hamiltonymca.org.  

All program requests are processed at the discretion of the program directors

We can refund/credit as follows:

  • Refunds will be given for classes cancelled due to insufficient enrollment only.
  • Credit will be issued only when the YMCA has an unforeseen closure or when an instructor is absent (and no coverage is provided).
  • Credit will be issued for illness when it results in the loss of four or more consecutive class days and must be supported by a doctor’s note.
  • Credit can be requested for illness, with prior notification to Aquatics Director.
  • Credits issued must be used within six months of issue date.
  • Credit will not be issued for missed classes for personal absence.


Ages 6 months - 2.5 years

  • Stage A & B: Discovery/ Exploration

Ages 2.5 years - Adult

  • Beginner Stage 1: Water Acclimation

  • Beginner Stage 2: Water Movement

  • Intermediate Stage 3: Water Stamina

  • Intermediate Stage 4: Stroke Introduction

  • Advanced Stage 5: Stroke Development

  • Advanced Stage 6: Stroke Mechanics

Advanced/Precompetitive Swim

  • High School Stroke Conditioning (14-18)

  • Precompetitive (9-13)

  • Adult Stroke Conditioning

Diverse Abilities Swim

  • Program Information & Intake Form

  • Diverse Abilities Swim - Swim Basics (ages 3 - 18)

  • Diverse Abilities Swim - Swim Strokes (ages 3-18)

  • Diverse Abilities Swim - Teen (ages 11+)


  • Private Lessons (ages 3+)

  • Semi-Private Lessons (ages 3+)

  • Private/Semi-private Lesson Cancellation & Credit Policy