the water

Water Safety in Florida is Essential

Drowning is preventable. That's why the YMCA has been committed to making aquatics programs accessible to all ages and income levels for more than 100 years. By providing kids and adults with the tools they need to be confident in and around water, we can help save lives.

Face the Water with Confidence

More than one million people turn to the YMCA for water safety lessons each year. Sign up for swim lessons or register to become a certified lifeguard today.

Search for YMCA swim and lifeguard programs near you!

A strong swimmer is a confident swimmer.

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Kids playing in pool

Learning the basics of swimming including floating and treading water helps prevent drowning. As “America's swim instructor,” the YMCA teaches children of all ages and backgrounds how to face the water with confidence.

Our swim programs are designed for all ability levels and include

Swim Starters (6 months - 3 years)

Children develop swim readiness skills through fun experiences that build confidence in children. Parents learn how to supervise children in water, prevent accidents and plan for emergencies.

Swim Basics (ages 3+)

Students of all ages gain basic water safety and swimming skills. Swimmers become comfortable and confident in the water through practicing safe water habits, engaging in underwater exploration and learning to swim to safety if they fall into a body of water.

Swim Strokes (school age, teens and adults):

Students learn additional water safety skills and build stroke technique, develop skills that can help prevent chronic disease, increase overall well-being and foster a lifetime of physical activity.

Kids playing in pool

Be the face of water safety.

Find Programs in Your Area

Lifeguards are essential to helping others stay safe in and around water. When you become a certified lifeguard through the YMCA training program, you learn life-saving skills you can apply anywhere, including CPR, First Aid, and Emergency Oxygen Administration. Become a certified lifeguard or explore aquatic job openings near you.

Plus, you'll learn safety skills, accident prevention, scanning, guarding techniques, emergency systems, rescue skills, first aid in aquatic environments, spinal injury management, open water dangers, legal responsibilities, pool maintenance basics, and information on how to get a job a lifeguard.


9 IN 10

U.S. parents see swimming as a key life skill for children, on par with first aid skills or being able to prepare a simple meal.


of U.S. parents have low confidence with water activities or bodies of water.


In 88% of drownings, an adult was present, but that was not enough.

3 IN 10

U.S. parents state that water safety isn't a priority due to affordability concerns. The YMCA offers financial assistance or free community lessons regularly.

When it Comes to Water Safety, Knowledge is Confidence

Learning essential water safety skills including how to designate an adult water watcher, what safety equipment can help keep your child safe around water and the importance of swim skills will help you and your child face the water with confidence.