We offer year round swim lessons for members and non members. For our members we offer lap and family swim, life guarding, scuba, swim team, stroke mechanics and a variety of exercise classes. The YMCA offers swim lessons for both preschool and youth. Preschool lessons are 30 minutes long and start at the age of 6 months to 5 years old. Classes are offered in our small pool year round, which is kept at 88 degrees. Preschool classes provide activities which will prepare a child to move in the water, improve strength, flexibility, coordination and self confidence. Youth classes are 45 minutes long and start at 6 years old through 15 years old. Classes are offered in our large pool year round, which is kept at 81 degrees. Youth classes prepare a child for personal safety, stroke development, personal growth and basic rescue.

Swim Lessons


Preschool 6 months – 5 years old


Parent/Child: This fun filled class provides activities which will prepare a child to move well, improve strength, flexibility, coordination and self-confidence. One adult must accompany the child in the water. We use songs to encourage child to move through the water. This class is for children 6months to 3 years old.

Pike: This is the first class without the parents, they should learn how to enter and exit the water by themselves, comfortable putting ears and eyes in the water, back float and jumping with assistance

Eel: By this class children are comfortable with the water, keeping their eyes in the water for 3 seconds, getting horizontal and deflating the bubble.

Tadpoles: With this class, we are trying to have the child swim the width of the pool with arms out of the water, rhythmic breathing, back floats and taking the bubble off.

Rays: This class the child will be swimming without the bubble swimming length of the small pool and introduction of the large pool

Starfish: The first class in the large pool, they are starting rotary breathing, swimming for 15 yards, backstroke, diving and treading water.


Progressive 6 years old- 12 years old


 Polliwog: This is the first level of the big pool for child who have not had formal instruction. They will learn personal safety, stroke development, personal growth. They will be getting comfortable with the water, getting their face wet, kicking with straight legs, back float.

Goldfish: This level  will help children improve on the skills above and add yards to the stokes, treading water, diving and back stoke

Guppy: Improve on the skills above, adding yards and start rotary breathing, floating, glides and life jacket skills

Minnow: Improve on the skills, above adding yards, start the whip kick, elementary backstroke, surfaces dive and flip turns

Fish: Improve on the skills above, adding yards, breast stroke, dive from the block, treading water and underwater swimming

Flying Fish: Improve on the skills above, adding yards, butterfly, racing dives

Shark: Improve on the skills above, adding yards and individual medley

Swim Team

The Hagerstown YMCA Gators swim team participates in both a summer and a winter league. We compete as a team in scored, dual meets as well as optional invitational meets throughout both seasons. Our team is a competitive swimming program that promotes youth development, healthy living and social responsibility. Participants build character values through personal improvement, training, goal-setting, teamwork and competition. In addition, we offer a USA swimming option for our swimmers.

Visit our team’s website for more information.


Ages 15 and older. In this course, students learn about the duties and responsibilities of being a lifeguard. Students also learn how to use rescue equipment, rescue a distressed swimmer, rescue an active drowning victim, rescue a passive drowning victim, and manage a suspected head injury victim.

Students must attend all the classes and pass all tests to become a certified lifeguard. In addition, participants must pass the pre-course test.
This test requires:

  • 500 yards of free and/or breaststroke
  • A surface dive to a depth of 7–10 feet
  • Returning to the surface with a 10-pound object
  • Swimming 25 yards back to the starting point
  • Treading water without the use of arms for 2 minutes

When returning to the starting point, the candidate must hold the 10–pound object with both hands and must keep his or her face above the water. These practices require strenuous activity.

Upon successful completion of the course, students receive an American Red Cross Lifeguard Training Certificate, which includes First Aid, and CPR for the Professional Rescuer which is valid for 2 years.

Water Safety Instructor

During our swim instructor certification training courses, you’ll learn how to help individuals enjoy their time in the water safely – and in a wide range of ways. Throughout the courses we’ll focus on many key areas that can help you succeed as aquatics instructor, such as:

  • Water safety at public pools, homes, natural bodies of
  • Hydrodynamics, including why some things float, resistance to movement and creating movement in water, swimming efficiency and laws of levers.
  • Basic safety, survival and swimming skills to help children gain water competency.
  • Helping people with disabilities and other health conditions enjoy the water safely.
  • Higher-level swim skills that help prepare people of all ages for any aquatic activity.
  • Stroke mechanics for all competitive strokes as well as starts, turns and headfirst entries.
  • Fundamentals of diving from a diving board.