"American's Swim Instructor"
The Y introduced group swim lessons over 110 years ago in 1909. Now, as one of the largest community-based organizations in the U.S., the Y teaches children and adults invaluable water safety and swimming skills each year, with intentional outreach to communities with higher rates of drowning.
Swimming lessons alone cannot prevent water-related deaths, but they can teach valuable lifelong skills to reduce drownings. The YMCA is driven by the belief that teaching children how to swim and be safe in and around water is not a luxury; it is a necessary life skill and part of the Y's mission to serve all.
Drowning Can Happen In Seconds
Drowning is a serious public health problem. About 11 people die each day from drowning in the United States. More children ages 1–4 die from drowning than any other cause of death except birth defects. While children are at highest risk, anyone can drown.
Drowning can happen in seconds and is often silent. It can happen to anyone, any time there is access to water.
Children ages 1–4 die from drowning more than any other cause of death except birth defects.
For children ages 1–14, drowning is the second leading cause of unintentional injury death.
Drowning rates for Black children ages 5 to 9 are 2.6x higher than white children. For ages 10 to 14 it is 3.6x higher.
In the U.S., each year on average there are 11 drowning deaths per day, and 22 nonfatal drownings per day.
Drowning Prevention Tips
Learn basic swimming and water safety skills
Build fences that fully enclose pools
Designate a responsible adult to supervise closely and constantly when children are in or near water
Wear a life jacket
Don’t hyperventilate or hold your breath for a long time
Learn More and Take Action
What can you do to prevent a loved one from drowning? Learn more about drowning prevention by visiting https://www.cdc.gov/drowning/prevention/.
Sign up your children and yourself (if applicable) for swim lessons. Learning to swim is a life skill, and being safe around water allows New Jerseyans to enjoy our lakes, beaches, and pools safely.
The Y offers year-round swim lessons (group and private) and yearly Safety Around Water classes. Learn more about swim lessons HERE.
The Y makes these lessons available to all regardless of ability to pay. Contact our Welcome Center at 973-744-3400 to learn more about our Access for All program.