For the past decade, I have been hard at work creating a system that will provide many advantages to the swimmers and families that choose to be a part of it. A system that can provide quality and appropriate programming for infants and beyond. Evolution Swim Academy has been successful in producing safer swimmers and very talented Division 1 scholarship type athletes and the results should not surprise you.
When students go through Evolution Swim Academy programming, rest assured that the current curriculum has been scrutinized, revised, turned upside down and corrected many times over. We do that to keep up with best teaching practices and to keep up with client demand. We have committed ourselves to teaching students the “swim-float-swim” method because we feel it is the most energy efficient way for a child to save herself if ever caught in a water incident. If you look closely at our lessons, you will notice that our instructors pay special attention to the way our students roll to their backs. It’s not as simple as just having them roll, we actually focus on having our students roll without needing to lift their heads. If your child is a Starfish 1-4, notice how our instructors guide the head by making sure that the roll is done properly. This is our commitment to attention to the small details. If a student lifts her head when rolling, the hips automatically drop causing our students to be more vertical than horizontal. When learning to swim, whether it for survival or for swimming purposes, you always want to be horizontal in the water and not vertical. In later lesson plans, this is super important because the slightest lift in head position when breathing will change the body position and make for less than efficient swimming. This is why we work so hard on the roll in earlier stages so that it becomes second nature by the time swimmers get into the higher lesson plans. This is just one reason why being a product of our learn-to-swim system is beneficial to our students and parents.
Our system does not stop producing at learn-to-swim. For those students that want to take the next step, we offer the Intro to Gators program. This program is offered 1x or 2x per week and gives students the opportunity to hone the skills learned in swim lessons. This low pressure program allows swimmers to gain a working knowledge of the four major swim strokes without the commitment of a competitive swim team. Why is this program an important part of our system? After swim lessons have ended it is tough to say that a student can go from being a “swim lesson” participant to being a “swim team” participant. I realized long ago that swimmers that join a swim team after lessons tend to dropout of the sport because it is too overwhelming. The change from lessons to team is radical and although some will find success, far to often, swimmers will fall short of expectations and quit. As you may know, I have four kids and the thought of someone asking us to take one of our young children from a 1x per week 30 minute lesson to an activity three times per week and attend swim meets on weekends would drive me to stay away from that activity all together. I mean really, ain’t nobody got time for that!! The reason the Intro to Gators program works is because we only require 1x or 2x per week attendance, for 45 minutes and we promise that the kids will come out of the program with a working knowledge of the four strokes and that the swimmers will be “swim team” ready. To take it a step further, this program also offers one swim meet per quarter which allows parents to gauge a child’s level of competitiveness before joining a swim team. Over time, we have found that swimmers that spend time at Intro to Gators tend to have a much better swim team experience and that retention seems to be a lot higher than for those swimmers that go directly from swim lessons. This program is unique to Evolution Swim Academy and is just another reason that being a product of our system is beneficial.
The final step in our system takes place when a swimmer graduates from the Intro to Gators program. At this point, the options are aplenty. The first option is the Gators Swim Club. There is a place on this team for every skill and commitment level. We pride ourselves on being the only team that continues to offer the 1x per week option for families that like to participate in other seasonal sporting activities. Swimmers that attend 1x per week can also attend swim meets, although not mandatory. We would rather you take on less and last longer than to take on too much and drop out after a few months. But the swim team is not the only option for Intro graduates. Let me tell you about real world cases involving graduates from our program that found success in other activities. Take Spencer A. who started with us about 10 years ago (he was 2 when he started taking lessons) and went through our program until he was a more confident and safer swimmer. Fast forward to today and you will learn that Spencer is one of the best 12 year old water polo players in all of Southern California. How about Cole J. He also started about 10 years ago and today, Cole is an active member of his high school’s surf team. How cool is that?! We have a clear understanding that not all of our graduates will be club swimmers and our job is not to produce swimmers but to produce a love for the water which will lead to healthier lifestyle choices. I can’t end this without giving you an example of students that have been through our programming and have ended up having swim team success. Anicka D and Isabela P. both went through our programming and participated in our Intro program. Both went on to swim on the Gators Swim Club. Isabela is now a junior and getting ready to apply to colleges and to be considered for a college scholarship because of her achievements both in the classroom and in the pool. Anicka is a freshman in high school and is currently ranked amongst the top 5 swimmers in the nation in her age-group. Both of these swimmers have a bright future ahead of them and I know that having taught them the right way and having taught them to love the water can be credited for at least a little of their success.