RLWYC is pleased to offer a swimming program again this year with weekly scheduled time for private and group lessons.

Formal lessons will follow the Lifesaving Society’s six-level Swimmer program (detailed below) as well as the three Patrol levels and Bronze courses. Levels will be assessed at the beginning of the week. If you feel uncertain of your child’s skill level, you can email Eliza Rankin (swimminginstructor@rlwyc.ca) for more information.

Private lessons are offered to either follow the Lifesaving Society’s program or, for adults, to provide stroke and open water coaching sessions.

We will continue the Open Water Group Swim both from the docks at the club and at various locations around the lake. This is aimed at competent swimmers who would like to join a group for open water swims. Dates and locations will be posted on social media, but please email Matthew (mgmckay@gmail.com) if you plan to attend an open water swim so we can update you on any last-minute changes due to weather.



The Lifesaving Society’s six-level Swimmer program makes sure your children learn how to swim before they get in too deep. Swimmer progressions accommodate children five years and older including absolute beginners as well as swimmers who want to build on the basics.

We stress lots of in-water practice to develop solid swimming strokes and skills. We incorporate Lifesaving Society Water Smart education in all Swimmer levels.



Swimmers 1-6

Swimmer 1
These beginners will become comfortable jumping into water with and without a personal flotation device. They’ll learn to open their eyes, exhale and hold their breath underwater. They’ll work on floats, glides and kicking through the water on their front and back.

Swimmer 1 is equivalent to Red Cross Swim Kids 1 and YMCA Seal Level. Recommend a minimum of 4 hours of instruction to achieve this level.

Swimmer 2
These advanced beginners will jump into deeper water, and learn to be comfortable falling sideways into the water wearing a personal flotation device. They’ll be able to support themselves at the surface without an aid, learn whip kick, swim 10–15 m on their front and back, and be introduced to flutter kick interval training (4 x 9–12 m).

Swimmer 2 is equivalent to Red Cross Swim Kids 2 and YMCA Dolphin Level. Recommend a minimum of 4 hours of instruction to achieve this level.

Swimmer 3
These junior swimmers will dive and do in-water front somersaults. Their new bag of tricks includes handstands and completion of the Canadian Swim to Survive® Standard. They’ll work on 10–15 m of front crawl, back crawl and whip kick. Flutter kick interval training increases to 4 x 25 m.

Swimmer 3 is equivalent to Red Cross Swim Kids 3 and YMCA Swimmer Level. Recommend a minimum of 6 hours of instruction to achieve this level.

Swimmer 4
These intermediate swimmers will swim 5 m underwater and lengths of front, back crawl, whip kick, and breaststroke arms with breathing. They’ll cap it all off with front crawl sprints over 25 m and 4 x 25 m front or back crawl interval training.

Swimmer 4 is equivalent to Red Cross Swim Kids 4-5 and YMCA Star 1 Level. Recommend a minimum of 6 hours of instruction to achieve this level.

Swimmer 5
These swimmers will master shallow dives, cannonball entries, eggbeater kicks, and in-water backward somersaults. Surface dives will take them down to underwater swims. They’ll refine their front and back crawl over 50 m swims of each, and breaststroke over 15–25 m. Then they’ll pick up the pace in 25 m sprints and two interval training bouts: 4 x 50 m front or back crawl; and 4 x 10–15 m breaststroke.

Swimmer 5 is equivalent to Red Cross Swim Kids 6 and YMCA Star 2 Level. Recommend a minimum of 6 hours of instruction to achieve this level.

Swimmer 6
These advanced swimmers will rise to the challenge of sophisticated aquatic skills including stride entries, compact jumps and lifesaving kicks like eggbeater and scissor kick. They’ll develop strength and power in head-up breaststroke sprints over 25 m. They’ll easily swim lengths of front crawl, back crawl, and breaststroke, and they’ll complete about 300 m workouts.

Swimmer 6 is equivalent to Red Cross Swim Kids 7 and YMCA Star 3 Level. Recommend a minimum of 6 hours of instruction to achieve this level.

*Program descriptions from the Life Saving Society Program Guide 2014 Edition



Canadian Swim Patrol

All Swim Patrol lessons must include more than one student in order to complete the course. If this isn’t possible, lessons may progress in some skills, but the course will not be completed.

Rookie Patrol
Swimmers continue stroke development with 50 m swims of front crawl, back crawl and breaststroke. Lifesaving sport skills include a 25 m obstacle swim and 15 m object carry. First aid focuses on assessment of conscious victims, contacting EMS, and treatment for bleeding. Fitness improves in 350 m workouts and 100 m timed swims.

Ranger Patrol
Features development of front crawl, back crawl and breaststroke over 75 m each, a 100 m lifesaving medley and timed 200 m swims.

Star Patrol
Demands good physical conditioning and lifesaving judgment. Participants develop lifesaving and first aid skills; further refine front crawl, back crawl and breaststroke over 100 m each; and complete 600 m workouts and 300 m timed swims.


Bronze Medal Awards

Bronze Star with Basic First Aid (14 hrs)
Excellent preparation for success in Bronze Medallion combined with Basic First Aid and CPR-A training.
Bronze Medallion with Emergency First Aid (24 hrs)
Teaches an understanding of the lifesaving principles embodied in the 4 components of water-rescue education – judgment, knowledge, skill and fitness.
Bronze Cross with Standard First Aid (28 hrs)
Designed for lifesavers who want the challenge of more advanced training including an introduction to safe supervision in aquatic facilities. Bronze Cross is a prerequisite for all advanced training programs including National Lifeguard and Instructor certification.
Each week there is time scheduled for both morning and afternoon sessions. We have taken great care to try and ensure that there is opportunity to participate in swimming lessons before/after sailing or tennis so that you can maximize your time at the club.

We will do our best to accommodate special requests (for example doing lessons during scheduled fun swim time); keeping in mind we must group swimmers by level and respect our student/teacher ratios.


All Classes offered at the RLWYC.


Registration for classes must be completed the Friday before the week you are registering for. This can be done here, on the RLWYC website, or by emailing our head instructor (swimminginstructor@rlywc.ca) with available/desired times and your child’s name and – preferably – skill level.



Full payment must be received with registration. A full refund will be given if there is insufficient demand to run a program. Once a class time has been determined and accepted, no refunds will be given. Students should bring a towel, sunscreen and life-jacket to every lesson. Please try to be 5 minutes early so classes can stay on time!


If raining, but the lake is safe to boat, on-land water-safety will be offered indoors instead of swimming.

Make-up lessons will be offered if weather is not safe to boat.

No other cancellations/refunds will be accepted.



You can find swimming updates, fun challenges, new skills to practice at home, and more on the Yacht Club Instagram, @RLWYC.