PUBLIC POOLS – Always Free – Open in the summer starting in late May, Houston Parks & Recreation Department (HPARD), 832-395-7000
Various locations, 713-659-5566"There are 26 YMCAs with swimming pools in the Houston area, 29 YMCAs provide swim lessons, and 12 YMCAs offer swim team," YMCA Director of Communications Ann Herlocher tells ParentsPost.com. In the greater Houston area, the YMCA has 36 facilities, one residence camp and hundreds of program sites.
BELLAIRE TOWN SQUARE FAMILY AQUATIC CENTER
7001 Fifth Street, 713-662-8280
Jennifer Bunch coordinates Learn to Swim classes for the City of Bellaire program. She says, "We focus on fun. Classes are designed to build swim skills and confidence. All the instructors are trained using the components of the American Red Cross program." READ PARENTS' REVIEWS
SAINT STREET SWIM
2727 Saint Street, 713-626-7946
Saint Street Swim offers classes for children 1-12 years old. There is a maximum of four participants per class. All instructors are certified lifeguards and professionally trained as swim instructors. The indoor pool water temperature is maintained at 88 degrees. Owner & Director Chad Neal says, "Saint Street Swim is a bright and positive learning environment for teaching children to swim. We have caring instructors and a solid proven program that approaches the whole child."
HOUSTON SWIM CLUB
Sharpstown – 8307 Augustine Drive, 713-774-7946
Sugarland – 9920 Hwy 90-A, Suite 220-B, 281-313-7946
Katy – 1711 N. Fry Road, 281-579-7946
Pearland – 2810 Business Center Drive, Suite 148, 713-434-7946
All pools are indoors and heated to 90-92 degrees. There is a maximum of 4 students per instructor, except for the parent/child lessons that can accommodate six parents with children per instructor. Sharpstown Director Stephanie Burns tells ParentsPost.com, "We feel that it is extremely important to educate children and parents on the joys and dangers associated with water, especially here in Houston where we are surrounded by pools, lakes, and are close to the ocean. Our goal is not only to help children develop water safety and swimming skills, but also to develop a lifelong love for the water."
WEST UNIVERSITY PLACE RECREATION CENTER
Wally the Walrus' Poolschool
4210 Bellaire Boulevard, 713-662-7420
Children who are 12 months to 2 years old must be accompanied in the Parent/Tot classes. Students 3 years old and up are evaluated and grouped by skill level.
The Woodlands: 3707 College Park Drive, 281-379-3467
Spring: 7827 Spring Cypress Road, 281-379-3467
Kingwood/Humble: 6900 FM 1960 East, Suite C, 281-379-3467
The parent/child classes are called BabyFINS. They are offered for babies and toddlers who are 6 months to 3 years old. At 30 months and up, children are divided by skill level. Group classes have four students per instructor. Semi-private classes have two students per instructor. "Drowning prevention is our number one goal," Regional Director Liam Goudeket tells ParentsPost.com. "We want to educate kids and the public about water safety. We have a more gentle approach, a firm but friendly approach. We build a proper rapport with the children. We use toys and games. We progress from breath control and floating, to proper posture and kicking."
NOAH'S ARK POOL
Quillian Center, First Methodist Houston
10570 Westpark, 713-781-9195
The Noah's Ark structure in the middle of the pool is popular with young children. It features three slides, water drops and sprays. Learn to Swim classes are offered for children starting at 3 years of age.