The Swim Professor

Jim Reiser, M.S.

How to Teach the Sidestroke Arms

When we first introduce the sidestroke arm pull, I still like to use this old analogy:  “Pick an apple off the tree, put it in the other hand, drop it in the basket.”  Once the student gets the general idea, you want them to be more efficient with the stroke or to refine the stroke.   To refine the sidestroke arms, we like these cues:  “Pull and Slide, Push & Glide” as seen in this video below:.

 

For our complete certification course on teaching Sidestroke, Elementary Backstroke and Treading, check out our Lifesaving Strokes 400 level Video Course on the Swim Lessons University website.

The International Swimming Hall of Fame has named Jim Reiser the recipient of the 2015 Virginia Hunt Newman Award for his curriculum and approach in teaching infants, toddlers, and children to swim.  Jim was the first American to win the award in 10 years.

If you would like to learn more about the Swim Lessons University certification program and curriculum, make sure to visit us at www.SwimLessonsUniversity.com 

We have training and certification programs designed for both private instructors as well as organizations like YMCAs, Recreation Departments, Athletic Clubs, and more.

Swim Lessons University is currently being utilized by recreation departments, YMCAs, America Camp Association swim lessons programs, as well as by private swimming instructors in 45 states and over 30 countries!

You can also call us toll free at 1-866-498-SWIM (7946).

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March 20, 2017 at 2:32 am Comments (0)

Swim Instructors and Body Language

How important is your body language when it comes to teaching? I expect that you may find these research-based facts and findings in the next few paragraphs quite interesting. In fact, it’s my hope that you will not only find them interesting, but that you and your learn-to-swim staff embrace them—potentially improving the perception of your teaching staff teaching overnight.

Communication occurs in three dimensions. Body language represents close to 60 percent. The noise that comes out of our mouths accounts for about 30 percent, leaving barely 10 percent to the words we use!  If most swimming instructors were given those three dimensions on one side of a page, and those percentages on the other side of the page, it is my guess that very few would have matched them up correctly.

Body language is capable of sending out all kinds of messages that can enhance or damage our students’ parents’ perception on us as swimming teachers. It is so critical that we are aware of these signals. People tend to have much less conscious control over their non-verbal messages than of what they’re actually saying. This is partly because non-verbal communication is much more emotional in nature, and therefore much more instinctive. If there is a mismatch between the two, THEREFORE, non-verbal messages are trusted rather than the words actually used.

Here are several examples of non-verbal messages:

  • Body Movements, for example, hand gestures or nodding or shaking the head;
  • Posture, or how you stand or sit, whether your arms are crossed, and so on;
  • Eye Contact, where the amount of eye contact often determines the level of trust and trustworthiness;
  • Para-language, or aspects of the voice apart from speech, such as pitch, tone, and speed of speaking;
  • Closeness or Personal Space, which determines the level of intimacy;
  • Facial Expressions, including smiling, frowning and even blinking.

Changingminds.org lists a number of body language clusters with a breakdown of their individual signals. Emotions like joy, anger, sadness and surprise are fairly easy to recognize, while others may take a little thought to figure out. Disinterest, for example, is expressed by looking away, fidgeting, or repeatedly glancing at your watch or a clock!

Other negative non-verbal cues swimming instructors need to avoid are communicated through your BODY POSTURE, often unintentionally communicating that you don’t care.

Here are several more examples Body Posture issues in particular:

  • Teaching with your arms crossed.
  • Yawning.
  • Floating around on a noodle.
  • Resting an arm on a lane line or back against the wall.

What can Swimming Instructors do to Portray that we Care?

  • Use proximity and be “hands-on.”
  • Lower yourself in the water so that your student and their parents see your eyes focused on the child. The “eyes” possess the loudest voice!
  • Tilt your head toward your student.
  • Raise an eyebrow to acknowledge a student’s question or response.
  • Look straight at your student to show that he/she has your attention.
  • If you need to disapprove of your student’s behavior, you can look straight at him/her with a prolonged, stare.

Practice Presenting Dynamically when You Teach!

In addition to non-verbal behavior and body language, swimming instructors can and should still strive to use assets like voice inflection to enhance communication. Remember, 30 percent of communication came not from the words that we speak, but simply from the noise. So if you can combine strong verbal cues with the voice inflection, your message will come across stronger and more effective.

Here are Three Proven Strategies:

  1. Loudness contrasted with softness.
  2. High-Pitched contrasted with low-pitch.
  3. Quick delivery contrasted with slow delivery

While you don’t have to be a public speaker, swimming instructors should know how to use voice dynamics when needed to make communication clearer (Rink, 1993).

FINAL THOUGHTS

Non-verbal communication is a complex yet integral part of overall communication skills for swimming instructors. However, far too often–teachers are often totally unaware of their non-verbal behavior.  I hope that this basic awareness of these non-verbal communication strategies, over and above what you actually say when you teach, will help you and your swim staff be even more successful in the near future!

 

The International Swimming Hall of Fame has named Jim Reiser the recipient of the 2015 Virginia Hunt Newman Award for his curriculum and approach in teaching infants, toddlers, and children to swim.  Jim is the first American to win the award in 10 years.

If you would like to learn more about the Swim Lessons University certification program and curriculum, make sure to visit us at www.SwimLessonsUniversity.com 

We have training and certification programs designed for both private instructors as well as organizations like YMCAs, Recreation Departments, Athletic Clubs, and more.

Swim Lessons University is currently being utilized by recreation departments, YMCAs, America Camp Association swim lessons programs, as well as by private swimming instructors in 45 states and over 30 countries!

You can also call us toll free at 1-866-498-SWIM (7946).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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January 24, 2017 at 11:42 pm Comments (0)

How the Stages of Learning Should Influence the Swim Instructor’s Approach

When learners begin to acquire a new skill, they are generally confronted with some very specific, cognitively oriented problems (Magill, 1993). While learners of all ages go through this, observing an adult learn to swim may illustrate this the best. If you have ever worked with adults who are beginners, what really stands out? In my experience, the answer is their QUESTIONS!  How do I pitch my hand? Where exactly does it enter the water? Should I hold my breath or exhale under water? What pattern does my arm make? Should my legs be bent or straight? Sound familiar? Each of these examples indicate the basic and cognitive level at which the new learner is operating in the early part of learning a new skill. Learners of all ages display these characteristics, however, I believe the adult beginner magnifies the characteristics which is why I used them in my example.

One characteristic of motor skill learning is that it is possible to identify distinct states or phases that all learners seem to experience as they learn skills through practice. While there have a been a few proposals to identify the stages of learning, I find the model by Paul Fitts and Michael Posner that was developed in 1967 to be most useful for swimming instructors. The Fitts and Posner Three-State Model is also traditionally accepted as the classic stage of learning model.

STAGES OF LEARNING, CHARACTERISTICS & TEACHING IMPLICATIONS

COGNITIVE STAGE OF LEARNING

The first stage of learning is considered the COGNITIVE STAGE OF LEARNING. Students in the cognitive stage display the following common characteristics when they perform:

  • They make a large number of errors
  • The nature of the errors committed tend to be gross
  • Their performance is highly variable

TEACHING IMPLICATIONS

  • Patience. Be understanding and keep encouraging.
  • Give cues and buzzwords to teach the gross idea or general idea of the skill.
  • Beginners may know they are doing something wrong, but they aren’t aware of exactly what to do differently to improve. Give specific, corrective feedback.

ASSOCIATIVE STAGE OF LEARNING

The second stage of learning is considered the ASSOCIATIVE STAGE OF LEARNING. The nature of the cognitive activity that is characterized in the cognitive stage changes during the associative stage:

  • Basic fundamentals have been learned. Errors are fewer and less gross in nature.
  • Variability of performance from one attempt to another also begins to decrease.
  • Learners have developed the ability to identify some of their own errors.

TEACHING IMPLICATIONS

  • Start refining the skill. Give more detailed feedback.
  • Have learner focus on different parts and incorporate more advanced drills.
  • Don’t give feedback after every repeat. Research shows when you give feedback more than 50% of the time– learning is hindered.

AUTONOMOUS STAGE OF LEARNING

After much practice and experience with the skill, the learner moves into the final stage of learning, the autonomous stage. Here the skill is almost automatic or habitual. In learn-to-swim, we really rarely see a learner in this stage. Why? Because as soon as our students become proficient enough at the skill where they have the general idea, we graduate the student to the next level.   When we graduate them to the next level, what stage does the student return to? If we are teaching them a new skill, they go back into the Cognitive Stage of Learning where they have to attend to the entire production of the skill again.   Whereas students in the autonomous stage of learning can perform most of the skill without thinking at all.

Fitts and Posner state that “there is a good deal of similarity between highly practiced skills and reflexes.” This doesn’t mean that learning stops or the individual ceases to make errors but rather that there is no longer a need for conscious attention to the motor act itself.   Think about a competitive swimmer participating in a big meet. The swimmer isn’t thinking about the pattern of the stroke as he races to the finish.   The swimmer is on automatic.

I hope you found today’s blog useful!

The International Swimming Hall of Fame has named Jim Reiser the recipient of the 2015 Virginia Hunt Newman Award for his curriculum and approach in teaching infants, toddlers, and children to swim.  Jim is the first American to win the award in 10 years.

If you would like to learn more about the Swim Lessons University certification program and curriculum, make sure to visit us at www.SwimLessonsUniversity.com  We have training and certification programs designed for both private instructors as well as organizations like YMCAs, Recreation Departments, Athletic Clubs, and more.

Swim Lessons University is currently being utilized by recreation departments, YMCAs, America Camp Association swim lessons programs, as well as by private swimming instructors in 45 states and over 30 countries!

You can also call us toll free at 1-866-498-SWIM (7946).

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January 20, 2017 at 3:46 am Comments (0)

How to Use Positive Feedback in Swimming Lessons

Have you ever fallen into the “feedback trap?”  Many swimming instructors, especially those instructors and coaches who are exceptionally knowledgeable on swimming technique often fall into a trap—a trap often referred to as a “feedback trap.”  When teaching beginners, or even a new skill to more advanced swimming students, it is critical that we consider the stages of learning before offering feedback.  All of these students are in the “Cognitive Stage of Learning.”

Students in the “Cognitive Stage of Learning” are known to have the following characteristics:

  • The student makes gross mistakes.
  • The student makes a large number of errors.
  • The student is inconsistent in his or her performance.
  • The student often knows he or she is doing something wrong, but they aren’t quite sure what to do differently in order to correct it.

Just as critical as each of the above-mentioned characteristics, beginners generally lack confidence!  With that in mind, it is imperative that swimming instructors don’t fall into the “feedback trap” of giving too many corrections!  No matter how “technically sound” and “accurate” the instructor’s feedback may be—the feedback often leads to over-thinking, paralysis by analysis, and overall frustration for the student.   We can never forget that the purpose of feedback which is to enhance learning, not the opposite.

With this in mind, my first word of advice to learn-to-swim instructors is to use plenty of positive feedback and build your student’s confidence.  Remember, practice is the best of all instructors.   In order to make strides and improvements when learning a skill as delicate and often scary as learning to swim, your learners must be confident in themselves.  Therefore, you have to create an atmosphere that is very positive, very encouraging, and very friendly.

I hope today’s blog helps you.  I will be posting several more blogs on feedback in the upcoming weeks.  We will cover how and when to give specific corrective feedback, specific evaluative feedback, and many more feedback techniques and tricks!

The International Swimming Hall of Fame has named Jim Reiser the recipient of the 2015 Virginia Hunt Newman Award for his curriculum and approach in teaching infants, toddlers, and children to swim.  Jim is the first American to win the award in 10 years.

If you would like to learn more about the Swim Lessons University certification program and curriculum, make sure to visit us at www.SwimLessonsUniversity.com  We have training and certification programs designed for both private instructors as well as organizations like YMCAs, Recreation Departments, Athletic Clubs, and more.

Swim Lessons University is currently being utilized by recreation departments, YMCAs, America Camp Association swim lessons programs, as well as by private swimming instructors in 45 states and over 30 countries!

You can also call us toll free at 1-866-498-SWIM (7946).

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January 8, 2017 at 10:21 pm Comments (0)

Swim Instructor In-Service Training Ideas

Do you find that after training your swim school staff and getting into your swim lessons that you or your instructors start having new questions on how or what to do in different situations?  

Do you even notice that certain techniques and strategies that were addressed in the original swim instructor training are still lacking by new instructors?

We do!  So at Swim Lessons University, we decided that the perfect solution to address these problems would be to hold an In-Service Staff Training session!  AND NOW–without traveling one mile—YOU AND YOUR STAFF can be a part of our amazing session!

In this brand new video—SLU Executive Director Jim Reiser answers 25 EXCELLENT QUESTIONS from his local staff, and he provides 25 simple and practical techniques to help every instructor improve their classes!

Here is a Small Sampling of the 25 Questions:

  1. How do I correct parents in my Parent & Toddler classes without appearing confrontational?
  2. How do I put the parent at ease about taking an infant or toddler underwater?
  3. What do you do in situations where you have a child who refuses to get in the water?
  4. What do you say to a parent who sends their child to the pool with goggles and they aren’t even putting their face in the water yet?
  5. Do you ever tell kids to close their mouth when breath holding?
  6. Do you let kids Doggie Paddle if they aren’t putting their face in the water?
  7. Do you have any tips on how to help students pick up the Freestyle Side Breathing easier?
  8. How do you get a child to flex both feet in breaststroke?

Again, these are just some examples of the 25 common questions asked by SLU swimming instructors….  As always, you will find this In-Service Swim Instructor Training Video to be information-packed, high energy and fast paced. You and your staff will be new and improved in 90 minutes or less–guaranteed!

Here is a 12-minute highlight video of the In-Service Training Poolside Seminar:

Order your copy today at www.SwimLessonsUniversity.com

The International Swimming Hall of Fame has named Jim Reiser the recipient of the 2015 Virginia Hunt Newman Award for his curriculum and approach in teaching infants, toddlers, and children to swim.  Jim is the first American to win the award in 10 years.

If you would like to learn more about the Swim Lessons University certification program and curriculum, make sure to visit us at www.SwimLessonsUniversity.com  We have training and certification programs designed for both private instructors as well as organizations like YMCAs, Recreation Departments, Athletic Clubs, and more.

The Swim Lessons University Instructor certification is an internationally recognized alternative to the Red Cross WSI.  AND when you utilize SLU, instructors can SPECIALIZE to teach specific classes and age groups OR they  can certify to teach them all!  Best of all, when you choose Swim Lessons University you can do all your training at your own facility or in the comfort of your own home, at your pace, and at a fraction of the cost!

Swim Lessons University is currently being utilized by recreation departments, YMCAs, America Camp Association swim lessons programs, as well as by private swimming instructors in 45 states and over 30 countries!

You can also call us toll free at 1-866-498-SWIM (7946).

 

 

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September 14, 2016 at 10:38 pm Comments (0)

Swim Lessons Results are Dependent Upon Effective Communication

So last night my wife Heather and I were winding down and watching reruns of “King of Queens” and she fell asleep on the couch.  I decided to head to bed and let her sleep.  Well a few hours later, our five-year old Nolan goes downstairs and decides to curl up on the couch with her in the middle of the night.  He then proceeds to wake her up and asks:  “Can we go upstairs and sleep in your bed?

Heather says: “Okay, but just for little bit.  Then you need to go back to sleep in your bed like a big boy.  You go ahead up and warm the bed up for us and I’ll be up in 5 minutes.”

Nolan responds: “I have no idea what you’re saying to me!” LOL!

This leads me to our choice of words and lingo when teaching young children to swim.  Too often we try to impress the parents and use advanced terminology.  While it may sound good to the parents, more often than not our young students don’t understand what we are trying to convey to them.  In my 5-Year old Nolan’s words:, “I have no idea what you’re saying to me!”   If they don’t understand what we are telling them, learning will be hindered.  On the contrary, if a Swim Instructor uses the K.I.S.S.  technique (Keep it Simple Stupid), children will learn to swim faster.

The International Swimming Hall of Fame has named Jim Reiser the recipient of the 2015 Virginia Hunt Newman Award for his curriculum and approach in teaching infants, toddlers, and children to swim.  Jim is the first American to win the award in 10 years.

If you would like to learn more about the Swim Lessons University certification program and curriculum, make sure to visit us at www.SwimLessonsUniversity.com  We have training and certification programs designed for both private instructors as well as organizations like YMCAs, Recreation Departments, Athletic Clubs, and more.

Swim Lessons University is currently being utilized by recreation departments, YMCAs, America Camp Association swim lessons programs, as well as by private swimming instructors in 45 states and over 30 countries!

You can also call us toll free at 1-866-498-SWIM (7946).

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January 19, 2015 at 11:05 am Comments (0)

How to Teach Baby Swim Lessons: Swim Instructor Q & A

Today’s blog is in a Q & A Format, as I answer questions from a baby swimming teacher from Thailand:

Thailand Instructor: After almost 9 years experince babies and toddlers to swim in Asia, Australia, and UK I am looking to find the best method for submerge progress. What I trying to know is that babies from 3 to 11 months are capable to hold their breath without doing any conditioning or water pouring activities?

Swim Professor: Babies do have an Epiglottal Reflex (Gag Reflex) that is well defined at birth and diminishes over the first 12-18 months of life.  So when water accidentally enters the mouth an involuntary spasm of the glottis and epiglottis occurs, keeping water out of the windpipe (trachea). This does NOT prevent water from entering the esophagus, which leads to the stomach.  At Swim Lessons University, our official Parent & Tot course does not begin until 12 months of age, although we make exceptions to start as young as 9 months.   There are three reasons:

1.  The American Academy of Pediatrics new recommendation is that swimming lessons can start at 12 months of age.

2. We want a baby’s pediatrician to approve of the activity.

3. Babies under 12 months of age are very limited from a motor skill standpoint. This prevents them from mastering real swimming skills in a joyful, positive environment.  Instead, we recommend our Bathtub Baby 101 Program.

Thailand Instructor:  If we prepare babies with stimulus activity such as pouring water with a full cup over head or with sprinkle, do babies accustom to this activity every time when they come to pool?  By pouring the a full cup of water will babies stop breathing? I experiment two different techniques. The first is pouring water over baby’s head and let baby know the verbal READY GO then gentle pull baby to self. In third class, after READY GO,  i pause a second then submerge the baby. The result was good, no crying, no coughing it was just positive reaction.

Swim Professor:  At Swim Lessons University, we use water-pouring activities ONLY as warm-up activity to get infants and toddlers comfortable with water on the face.  Your “Ready Go” command is fine (we use 1, 2, 3, breath cue) BUT the key is that your start command is consistent.  In other words, since our cue to the baby is “1, 2, 3, breathe” is the “signal” to the baby that we are going under water, we “condition” the baby “so to speak” that when they hear “1, 2, 3, breathe” that the submersion follows.   Here is a video example of this:

HOWEVER, if the baby communicates that he is scared thru verbal or body language, we would NOT submerge the baby.

***ALSO VERY IMPORTANT:  Just because a baby isn’t coughing or gagging DOES NOT mean that the baby isn’t drinking the water.  This is one reason we think it is critical to go under water and watch the baby during submersions. In addition, we think it is important to limit the number of submersions you do with the baby over the course of a 25 minute lesson.

Thailand Instructor:  In another technique, I did cup conditioning for two weeks. READY GO then pouring a full cup of water over baby’s head. Running the water fast and smooth only for a second (practice as long as baby was happy, 5 times).  So, in third week when i hold the cup and i say the READY GO then suddenly baby reacts such as closing the eyes and intense face. I did submerge baby positively same as first one, but i relized that i have to do cup conditioning for before first submerge in every class.

Swim Professor:  Again, I would just look at the “water pouring” as a warm-up activity during a song (as seen in the Parent & Tot DVD), not as part of the conditioning process.  In addition, we don’t necessarily wait for a “certain number of classes” to let our toddlers perform breath holding or breath control activities.  If the toddler is receptive to the skill on the first day and you are using a child-focused progression and common sense, you will find many toddlers are ready for facial immersion on the first day.  On the other hand, any indication that the child is not ready should be the instructor’s sign to come back to it on perhaps the following class.   All skills should be done at the child’s pace, NOT the parent’s or instructor’s.

Thailand Instructor:  Would you please help to know more about holding breath progress and also about baby’s reflexes?

Swim Professor:  Of course I discussed the Epiglottal Reflex earlier.   In terms of breath holding, it’s all about the child’s readiness.   In our Parent & Tot Certification Course, we cover this in detail.  But we combine breath holding with the Surface Swim Progression.  Here is a look at the first two steps of our 3-STAGE PROGRESSION:

STAGE ONE:
Here is Stage One of a Surface Swim with 21-month old, Saylor. Watch how I keep my eyes on her face to ensure she is happy throughout the process, I never let her go, nor do I take her underneath the surface of the water. Humans swim at the surface, therefore, especially when you introduce swimming to young infants and toddlers you avoid taking them under the surface or dunking them. You gently place the face in the water after giving a 1-2-3 start command. Secondly, you bring them up for air when they are ready. Don’t overstay your welcome. Their facial expressions and their body language tells you everything you need to know in order to keep the task child-focused.

STAGE TWO
Here is Stage Two of the Surface Swim Progression. Notice how I watch my student under water ensuring each moment of the swim is a positive one. Now that Rex successfully performed stage two, he is ready for stage three which is the “pop-up breath.”

 

The International Swimming Hall of Fame has named Jim Reiser the recipient of the 2015 Virginia Hunt Newman Award for his curriculum and approach in teaching infants, toddlers, and children to swim.  Jim was the first American to win the award in 10 years.

If you would like to learn more about the Swim Lessons University certification program and curriculum, make sure to visit us at www.SwimLessonsUniversity.com 

We have training and certification programs designed for both private instructors as well as organizations like YMCAs, Recreation Departments, Athletic Clubs, and more.

Swim Lessons University is currently being utilized by recreation departments, YMCAs, America Camp Association swim lessons programs, as well as by private swimming instructors in 45 states and over 30 countries!

You can also call us toll free at 1-866-498-SWIM (7946).

 

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November 5, 2013 at 3:20 pm Comments (0)

How to Teach the Butterfly

Once your students have a hang of the “general idea” of the butterfly stroke, then it is time to start refining some of the details. In this video clip, you can see 6-year old McKinley is figuring out the opportune time to get the head beneath the surface. On her first two strokes, she drops her head prematurely which throws off the timing and interferes with the recovery. When the head goes down too early, so do the shoulders, which prevent an nice, smooth recovery of the arms (you recover after each pull). While she still has plenty to work on (what 6 year old doesn’t?), she does a fabulous job putting figuring out the necessary head position relative to the recovery and entry!

***Note McKinley is also wearing a pair of Finis Zoomers. I like the Zoomers because the blade is short, keeping the kick action more similar to their kick than would long blade flippers. At the same time, the short blade Zoomers still provide additional propulsion which helps young learners get higher in the water and gives them a better chance to make technique improvements. For more detailed video instruction on how to teach the butterfly, check out Swim Lessons University for Swim Instructor DVDs, as well as Online Swim Instructor Certification opportunities.

 

The International Swimming Hall of Fame has named Jim Reiser the recipient of the 2015 Virginia Hunt Newman Award for his curriculum and approach in teaching infants, toddlers, and children to swim.  Jim is the first American to win the award in 10 years.

If you would like to learn more about the Swim Lessons University certification program and curriculum, make sure to visit us at www.SwimLessonsUniversity.com  We have training and certification programs designed for both private instructors as well as organizations like YMCAs, Recreation Departments, Athletic Clubs, and more.

Swim Lessons University is currently being utilized by recreation departments, YMCAs, America Camp Association swim lessons programs, as well as by private swimming instructors in 45 states and over 30 countries!

You can also call us toll free at 1-866-498-SWIM (7946).

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September 20, 2012 at 12:25 pm Comments (0)

Swim Instructor Mentoring Program

When using the video-based Swim Lessons University Instructor Training and Certification program, we also advise that SLU programs incorporate a mentoring program for new swimming instructors.   In addition to the invaluable opportunity to train by watching the courses actually being taught, we believe nothing ever can truly take the place of real experience.  This is where the mentoring program comes to play.

At the Swim Lessons Company, I require my teachers to shadow either myself and/or several of our senior instructors.   I like to have our swim instructor candidates shadow four different experienced Swim Lessons University instructors on four different days for a total of 12 hours.  That 12 hours of practicum work, of course, is in addition to their 12 hours of classroom video-based training and online swim instructor testing.  This gives the new teacher “hands-on” experience with not only four different instructors teaching from the same lesson plans and curriculum, it also gives them experience working with a variety of children, personalities, levels, and age groups.

Here is an email I send to my Senior SLU Instructors when the mentoring program is about to begin.  This way they know what is expected of them as the new teachers participate in their practicums.

Dear Staff,

Please note that I have begun scheduling new teachers at various locations to do their practicums with many of you.  If for any reason you have to reschedule a class—please remind me if you are mentoring a teacher that night so we can let them know too.

READ INSTRUCTIONS CAREFULLY.  The following is a set of guidelines for how you should help break in our new teachers.  Your influence on developing their teaching skills is an instrumental part of preparing them to represent us well and deliver the superior product that SLC parents in Columbia have come to expect.

  1. Introduce the teacher to your class and tell children that he/she will be helping you today.
  2. The first time you teach any particular level, begin to show them the various supports and manipulating techniques we do and let them try it with your guidance.
  3. Without taking away from your class, comment on the names of the exercise and on the cues we use, BUT for the most part you are demonstrating how we do it AND the teacher-in-training is just “shadowing” you.  Don’t overteach them, let them watch and learn and be a little “hands on.”
  4. LASTLY – THIS IS REALLY HELPFUL:

Once the teacher candidate has settled in, so to speak–take turns with them starting the children.  You always present the new exercise or activity, give the cues/instructions, give the start signal and give feedback AND THEN let the teacher candidate try it for the second practice trial.  REPEAT for each exercise or activity that we do.

* For the Parent & Tot swim classes— you teach the class, however, get teacher candidate involved in the holds, passes, safety skills, etc.

*  DO NOT TURN YOUR CLASS INTO TWO PRIVATE LESSONS.  YOU TEACH.  THEY SHADOW.   MANY OF THE TEACHERS IN TRAINING WILL BE DOING THEIR PRACTICUMS before they do their classroom training.

If you have any questions please let me know!  Thanks you!

The International Swimming Hall of Fame has named Jim Reiser the recipient of the 2015 Virginia Hunt Newman Award for his curriculum and approach in teaching infants, toddlers, and children to swim.  Jim is the first American to win the award in 10 years.

If you would like to learn more about the Swim Lessons University Online Swim Instructor Certification  and curriculum, make sure to visit us at www.SwimLessonsUniversity.com

Swim Lessons University is currently being utilized by recreation departments, YMCAs, America Camp Association swim lessons programs, as well as by private swimming instructors in 45 states and over 30 countries!

You can also call us toll free at 1-866-498-SWIM (7946).

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February 9, 2012 at 3:58 pm Comments (0)

Swim Instructor Certification Alternatives

As the American Red Cross raises it’s fees for swim lesson programs and it’s Water Safety Instructor certification, the interest in an alternative swim instructor certification is on the rise.   One of those alternatives is the Swim Lessons University Swimming Instructor training program.

Barb Limbo, Aquatic Director for the Rapid City Aquatics Recreation Department in South Dakota comments, “We have adapted the Swim Lesson University program. The ease of training staff is great. The videos show the instructors how to interact with children, not just show the progressions of the strokes.   Swim Lessons University is wonderful and has been great to work with on the switch at our facility–making our transition much easier.”

There are several real advantages, in addition to it being more cost effective solution for recreation departments, YMCA’s, and swim schools.   To name a few, all training can be done in-house.  SLU training features video-based courses so swim instructor candidates get to learn from watching real learn-to-swim classes and expert instructors vs. the traditional textbook approach.  Swim Lessons University training is also very convenient as swim teachers do all their testing online.

Former USA Olympian, 1988 Silver Medalist, and swim school owner Beth Barr speaks of Jim Reiser and Swim Lessons University:

“Your appreciation and knowledge of the sport, your business sense and your understanding of children and how they learn is revolutionizing the swim lesson industry.   Your efforts have not only given me the confidence to start BARRacuda Swim Works, they have also reminded me of the critical importance of our profession. Your passion is apparent and catching – it is important to teach children and their parents how to enjoy the water, safely, and to help them develop a skill they can enjoy their entire life.”

 

The International Swimming Hall of Fame has named Jim Reiser the recipient of the 2015 Virginia Hunt Newman Award for his curriculum and approach in teaching infants, toddlers, and children to swim.  Jim is the first American to win the award in 10 years.

If you would like to learn more about the Swim Lessons University Online Swim Instructor Certification  and curriculum, make sure to visit us at www.SwimLessonsUniversity.com

Swim Lessons University is currently being utilized by recreation departments, YMCAs, America Camp Association swim lessons programs, as well as by private swimming instructors in 45 states and over 30 countries!

You can also call us toll free at 1-866-498-SWIM (7946).

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October 26, 2011 at 3:17 pm Comments (0)

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