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Learn to Swim

We are working hard to bring you the best programs and services during these unprecedented times. Due to this, swimming lessons have been postponed until further notice. 


Make a splash! Purdue RecWell offers group lessons, private lessons, and semi-private lessons for both children and adults. You don’t need any prior experience; we will work with you to help you feel confident and comfortable in the water. Swimming lessons are held in our Rec Pool, located in the Recreational Sports Center and on occasion some sessions are in the aquatic center.

  • Parent/Child and Preschool Aquatics: Purdue Affiliate $35;  Non-Affiliate $45

  • Youth and Adult: Purdue Affiliate $50; Non-Affiliate $65

  • Each session includes eight lessons

Prices denoted are per session.
Registration Process

Registration happens online for Purdue affiliates. Click on 'programs' to see a list of available prorgams to register for. Please note: before you can register online, we need to help you create an account for the individual participating in Learn to Swim (e.g. Each child you want to register).  This can be done by calling 765-494-3110 or visiting the Member Services desk.

Non-Purdue affiliates can register in person.  We will be running registration on a session by session basis. All registration is on a first come first serve vasis. You are not registered for a class until you have completely paid. Please contact Member Services with questions.

Registration Dates
We're working hard to bring you the best programs and services during these unprecedented times.  Check back for updated schedules.
Waitlist Procedures
  • Waitlist registration occurs in-person, upon request and at the Member Services desk

  • All waitlist requests must be received no later than one week prior to the start of the desired class. *No additional waitlist requests will be approved after this time

  • Waitlist sign-up does not guarantee lesson registration

  • Waitlist participants who have been approved to enroll in a class will be contacted the Monday before the session begins and must register/pay for the approved class by the following Friday by 10 p.m.

  • Waitlist sign-ups are non-transferable. Only waitlisted participants will be permitted to register for an approved class should spaces allow.  Late registrations after course spaces have filled are not permitted

  • Once the waitlist max number has been met, there will be no more slots open

Refund & Withdrawal Policy
  • Requests for swim lesson withdrawals and refunds should be processed by the Member Services Desk and will be submitted for approval to the Assistant Director of Aquatics Education and Programs

  • Refund/withdrawal requests must be received by the Monday prior to class start date. Refunds will not be approved after this time

  • Classes not meeting the minimum number of three participants will be cancelled and refunds will be issued

Youth Class Offerings:

Group Lessons consist of classes for adults, youth: 5 years and up, preschool: 3-5 years, and parent/child: 6 months-3 years.  

Private and Semi-Private Lessons are opened to requests at the beginning of each semester.  They are scheduled on an instructor availability basis. Once you are assigned to an instructor, you will arrange your schedule directly with the instructor.  Purdue Recreation and Wellness does not match up clients for semi-private lessons. 

Parent & Child Aquatics

For ages 6 months to 3 years old. This class prepares children to be comfortable in and around water. The course gives parents safety information and teaches techniques to help orient their children to the water. The children will never be in the pool on their own at this age.

Skills Learned: Holding and support techniques for parents to hold their child in the water, entering and exiting the water, breath control techniques (blowing bubbles, submersion of nose and mouth, opening eyes underwater) buoyancy on front and back, beginning arm and leg motions.

Preschool Aquatics

For ages 3 to 5 years old. This class familiarizes children with the aquatic environment and helps them learn basic aquatic skills as well as develop positive and safe practices in and around water. 

Skills Learned: Water entry and exit, breath control and submerging (blowing bubbles, bobbing, rotary breathing), floating on front and back, treading, combined arm and leg actions on front and back, and changing directions in water. 

To be able to advance to Youth Aquatics: 

  • Must enter the water independently, using either the ramp, steps or side, travel at least 5 yards, submerge to mouth and blow bubbles for at least 3 seconds then safely exit the water. Children can walk, move along the gutter or “swim.”
  • While in shallow water, glide on front at least 2 body lengths, then roll to back and float on back for 3 seconds, then recover to a vertical position. 
  • Glide on front for at least 2 body lengths, roll to back, float on back for 15 seconds, then recover to a vertical position.
  • Glide on back for at least 2 body lengths, roll to front, then recover to a vertical position.
  • Swim using combined arm and leg actions while face down for at least 3 body lengths, roll to back, float for 15 seconds, roll to front, then continue swimming on front for at least 3 body lengths.
  • Step from the side into chest deep water, push off the bottom, move into a treading or floating position for 15 seconds, swim on front and/or back for 5 body lengths, then exit the water.
  • Move into a back float for 15 seconds, roll to front, then recover to a vertical position.
  • Push off and swim using combined arm and leg actions on front for 5 body lengths, roll to back, float for 15 seconds, roll to front, continue swimming for 5 body lengths.
  • Must meet age requirements for youth lessons and demonstrate competency completing course objectives at the discretion of a learn-to-swim instructor.
Youth Level 1 - Introduction to Water Skills

For ages five or older this class is designed to introduce those who are just starting off in the water to master introductory skills such as: submerging face, blowing bubbles, assisted floats, and water safety, and basic swim technique. All skills are performed with the assistance of an instructor. 

To advance to Youth Level 2: Students must be able to enter water independently, travel at least 5 yards, bob 5 times then safely exit water. Students must be able to glide on front at least 2 body lengths, roll to a back float for 5 seconds, then recover to a vertical position (can be performed with assistance).

Youth Level 2 - Fundamental Aquatic Skills

For ages six and older, this class is designed for those who can fully submerge faces, blow bubbles, and do assisted floats. Students will learn introductory skills such as kicking, floating and underwater exploration. Goals include helping children gain greater independence performing basic swimming skills. 

To advance to Youth Level 3: Enter into chest-deep water, push off the bottom, move into a treading or floating position for at least 15 seconds, swim on front and/or back for 5 body lengths, then exit water. Students must move into a back float for 15 seconds, roll to front, then recover to a vertical position. Students must push off and swim using combined arm and leg actions on front for 5 body lengths, roll to back float for 15 seconds, roll for the front, then continue swimming for at least 5 body lengths.

Youth Level 3 - Stroke Development

For ages six and older, this class is designed to build on and practice Level 2 skills. Skills taught include coordinating front crawl and back crawl, introduction to elementary backstroke, introduction to treading, retrieving objects, and introduction to diving. 

To advance to Youth Level 4: Students must jump into deep water from the side, recover to the surface maintain position by treading or floating for 1 minute, rotate one full turn then turn as necessary to orient to the exit point, level off, swim front crawl and/or elementary backstroke for 25 yards, then exit water. Students must push off in a streamlined position then swim front crawl for 15 yards, change position and direction as necessary, swim elementary backstroke for 15 yards, then exit water.

Youth Level 4 - Stroke Improvement

For ages six and older, this class is designed to develop confidence and endurance in the front crawl, back crawl, elementary backstroke, and existing skills. Skills taught include standing dive, deep-water skills, introduction to breast stroke, sidestroke, treading water (scissors kick, rotary kick).

To advance to Youth Level 5: Participants must demonstrate competency in level 4 skills, perform strokes to level 4 quality/proficiency, and pass level 4 exit skills tests. Students must: Perform a feetfirst entry into deep water, swim front crawl for 25 yards, change direction and position as necessary and swim elementary backstroke for 25 yards; swim breastroke for 15 yards change direction and position as necessary and swim back crawl for 15 yards; submerge and swim a distance of 3 to 5 body lengths underwater without hyperventilating, return to the surface and exit the water.

Youth Level 5 - Stroke Refinement

For ages six and older, this class is designed to coordinate and refine the key strokes. Skills taught include underwater swimming, diving, breaststroke, sidestroke, introduction to butterfly, dolphin kick, feet-first surface dives and open turns. 

To advance: Students must perform a shallow-angle dive into deep water at least 9 feet deep, swim front crawl for 50 yards, then swim elementary backstroke for 50 yards using appropriate and efficient turning styles through out; swim breastroke for 25 yards change direction of travel as necessary and then swim back crawl for 25 yards using appropriate and efficient turning styles throughout.

Adult Class Offerings:

These classes are designed for participants aged 16 years or older.

Adult Level 1 - Beginning Swim

This class is designed for adults with little or no swimming experience. The goal of this class is to swim a specified length (25 yards), feel more comfortable in deep water, learn safety skills, and develop the basic strokes. This class is designed for participants to enjoy the water and prepare for increased activities around the water. 

Skills Learned:

  • Enter/exit water using ladder, steps, or side
  • Blow bubbles through mouth and nose
  • Fully submerged bobs
  • Front/Back glides, 2 body lengths
  • Recover from a horizontal to vertical position 
  • Roll from front to back and back to front 
  • Learn arm and hand motions for treading water 
  • Alternation/Simultaneous arm/ leg actions of front and back, 2–3 body lengths
Adult Level 2 - Intermediate Swim

This class is designed for the weak, but well-adjusted swimmer. Participants should be able to swim 1 length of the pool (25 yards) using any stroke and have basic treading and floating skills. The general goals include increased proficiency in the basic strokes, greater understanding of water safety, and the ability to use the water as a medium for recreation and fitness. 

Skills Learned:

  • Enter water by jumping in from the side 
  • Headfirst entries from the side in a sitting and kneeling position 
  • Rotary breathing (turning the head to the side to take breaths) 
  • Front/Back floats, 15 seconds
  • Treading water, 30 seconds 
  • Flutter/Scissor/Dolphin/Breaststroke kicking on the front, 15 yards 
  • Front Crawl/Elementary Backstroke, 15 yards
Adult Level 3 - Advanced Swim

This class is designed to help participants focus on forming more proficient strokes, refining stroke techniques, and learning lasting training techniques. Training tips include helping participants add to their own workouts or join a swim team. 

Skills Learned:

  • Shallow-angle dive from the side, kick 2–3 body lengths underwater, begin any front stroke 
  • Tuck and pike surface dives, submerging completely 
  • Front and back flip-turns 
  • Tread water, 3 minutes 
  • Front Crawl/Breaststroke/Butterfly, 25 yards 
  • Elementary Backstroke/Back Crawl/Side Stroke, 25 yards

Private or Semi-Private Lessons

Private and semi-private lessons are offered to children and adults of all skill levels including those with no swimming experience. Receive one-on-one instruction with a Water Safety Instructor based on your personal goals.

  • Days/Times: Lessons are scheduled based on your availabilty. 
  • Pricing: 
    • Private Lesson Package (Four 30 minute sessions)
      • Purdue Affiliate: $80
    • Semi-Private Lesson Package (Four 45 minute sessions)
      • Purdue Affiliate: $60

Request Process
  1. Fill out and turn in Private/Semi Private lesson request using this link  

  2. Requests are processed based upon instructor availability.

  3. You will be contacted by an instructor once your request has been processed.

Purchase Process
  1. Instructors will reach out to clients to coordinate and confirm schedules.

  2. Instructor and client will schedule the first meeting and will meet at the Member Services Desk for initial payment of the lesson package.  Lessons cannot occur without lessons being purchased.

Renewal Process
  1. Discuss renewal plans with your instructor.

  2. Once agreed upon by both client and instructor, you will receive a Renewal Approval Form from your instructor.

  3. Renewal Ppproval Form must be signed by the instructor confirming lesson renewal and eligibility to purchase.

  4. You must present the form to Member Services and pay for lessons before continuing.

  1. Private/Semi-private lessons are only for those three years of age and older.

  2. Semi-private lesson participants must be of similar age and similar abilities. Should the participants’ skills be too dissimilar, to the point it makes the lesson difficult to manage for the instructor, the participants will be removed from the semi-private lesson and asked to purchase private lessons.

  3. You must have confirmation from a Learn to Swim Instructor to purchase lessons.  Lessons must be purchased before the first lesson begins.

  4. All RecWell, Boilermaker Aquatic Center, and Recreational Pool policies apply when present for lessons.

  5. Please meet the instructor at the predetermined location 10-15 minutes before your scheduled lesson.

  6. Families may use the family & gender inclusive changing rooms on level 1 of the CoRec. Children under six years of age may accompany a parent or guardian into the opposite gender locker room.

  7. Parents are asked to escort their children to the pool deck to meet the instructor then move to a designated viewing area to observe lessons.

  8. Lessons begin at the designated time and end at the designated time. Should you be late for the lesson, the lesson will still end at the designated time. Lessons will not be extended past the designated end time due to participant tardiness. Lessons will be canceled and forfeited 15 minutes after the designated start time if the participant is not present.  

  9. If you must cancel a lesson, please give the instructor at least 24 hour notice of the cancellation. If you are unable to give the instructor 24 hour notice, you risk forfeiting the lesson. Special circumstances will be considered at the discretion of the Assistant Director, Aquatic Education and Programs.

  10. Children are not permitted to use the pools or other facilities before or after scheduled lessons, except during limited access hours before 1 p.m. Monday-Thursday and all operational hours Friday-Sunday.