Aquatics important dates and notices

Summer swimming lessons are impacted by the closure of Emerald Leisure Centre from June 28 - August 5.

Learn about the upcoming transition from Red Cross swimming programs to the Lifesaving Society Swim for Life program.

Last modified: June 23, 2022, 10:21 a.m.
Parented swim lesson

Welcome to Strathcona County's swimming and water safety programs! Working with our partners at the Canadian Red Cross and Lifesaving Society of Canada, all of our professional aquatic team members hold a complement of certifications to ensure you have the best experience every time you register.

Swimming for the July and August 2022 summer season is in eight one-week sessions at Kinsmen Leisure Centre (KLC) and Emerald Hills Leisure Centre (EHLC):

  • July 4-6, July 11-15, July 18-22, July 25-29: morning/evening lessons at KLC
  • August 2-5: swimming camps at KLC
  • August 8-12, August 15-19, August 22-26: morning lessons at KLC, afternoon/evening lessons at EHLC

Programs offered

Strathcona County swimming programs are available in seasonal sessions throughout the year. All currently available swimming program categories are listed below.

Swimming programs

  • Come explore life underwater or get a VIP week at Kinsmen Leisure Centre in our PADI Seal Team Scuba Camp or Aquatic Adventure Camp!

    Summer swim camp registration

  • We are excited to welcome back outdoor lessons this summer at Hastings Lake Bible Camp, located at #135-51263 Range Road 204, Sherwood Park. These lessons consist of the same Red Cross levels you know and love, but are offered in a combined format that fits the reduced pool space available at Hastings Lake Bible Camp.

    Register in Hastings Lake swim lessons*

    *We have combined lessons for preschool and swim kids levels that have similar objectives to ensure that we are offering options for families at all times of the morning. When registering, please look for the combined level that includes the level your swimmer is working on.

    *Please be advised that lessons may be cancelled due to unsafe pool chemistry or inclement weather. Refunds are not available for cancelled lessons. In the event of a cancellation, you will receive a call to the phone number noted in your Reconline account. Please contact us at 780-464-2112 if you require assistance updating your phone number or account information.

  • Parent & Tot programs require a caregiver 14 years of age or older to accompany each participant in the water every class. Taught exclusively in the Kids Pool basin where the depth ranges from 0.3 - 0.5 metres.

    Parent and Tot registration

    Starfish: Open to students 4-12 months. Babies and their caregivers work on getting wet, submersion, and moving forward and backward through songs and games.

    Duck: Open to students 12-24months. Toddlers and their caregivers work on getting wet, rhythmic breathing, moving forward and backward, front and back float with recovery, and shallow water entries and exits.

    Sea Turtle: open to students 24-36 months of age. Toddlers and their caregivers work on submersion, front and back floats and glides, jumping into chest-deep water with assistance, kicking on front and front swim.

  • Participants do not require a caregiver in the water, however a caregiver is more than welcome to accompany the participant into the class to provide additional assistance, support or enjoyment!  

    This program is ideal for students aged 3 – 6 years. Levels are progressive so it is recommended that students complete the previous level before registering in the next.  

    Red Cross Swim Preschool registration

    If you would like to maintain a physical distance between your child and the other participants and/or instructor, please ensure that your swimmer comes with a caregiver who can be in the water, within arms reach of the swimmer, for safety purposes.

    Sea Otter: Taught exclusively in the Kids Pool basin where the depth ranges from .3 m to .5 m. Swimmers work on front and back floats and glides, kicking on front with a buoyant object, and will be able to swim 1 metre upon completion of this level. This is the first unparented program in Red Cross Swim Preschool. 

    Salamander: Swimmers work on improving their front and back float and jumping into chest-deep water unassisted. Kicking is added to the front and back glide and swimmers will be able to swim 2 meters upon completion. This is the second unparented program in Red Cross Swim Preschool. 

    Sunfish: Swimmers work on kicking and can perform glides (front and back), enter deep water safely, float in deep water, swim with a PFD, and swim 5 meters continuously. This is the third unparented program in Red Cross Swim Preschool. 

    Crocodile/Whale: Open to any swimmers who have completed Sunfish or Crocodile. Swimmers further develop their front and back glide with kick, front and back swim, jump into deep water, swim with a PFD in deep water and swim 10 meters continuously. This level encompasses the final two unparented programs in Red Cross Swim Preschool. 

  • Participants do not require a caregiver in the water; however, a caregiver is more than welcome to accompany the participant into the class to provide additional assistance, support or enjoyment! 

    This program is ideal for students aged 5-13 years of age. Levels are progressive and it is recommended that students complete the previous level before registering in the next. 

    Red Cross Swim Kids 1 - 10 registration

    If you would like to maintain a physical distance between your child and the other participants and instructor, and your child is in level 3 or lower, please ensure that your swimmer comes with a caregiver who can be in the water, within arm's reach of the swimmer, for safety purposes  

    Level 1: Open to any swimmer 5 years of age and older! Swimmers receive an orientation to water and the pool area and work on floats, glides and kicking. Swimmers build their endurance by working on the 5m front skills. 

    Level 2: Open to swimmers who have completed Red Cross Swim Preschool – Sunfish or Red Cross Swim Kids Level 1. Swimmers work on propulsion skills to move through the water and to remain at the surface.  Work on front swim (3 x 5m) and back swims, and create awareness about deep-water activities and proper use of a Personal Flotation Device (PFD). Fitness activities include the flutter kick 15m and a distance swim 10m. 

    Level 3: Open to swimmers who have completed Red Cross Swim Preschool – Crocodile/Whale or Red Cross Swim Kids Level 2. Swimmers are introduced to the front crawl (3x5m) and diving, and learn about swimming safety. Working on endurance, swimmers will build strength in their flutter kick and 15-metre swim. 

    Level 4: Open to swimmers who have completed Red Cross Swim Kids Level 3. Swimmers will continue to develop their front crawl (3x10m) and back glides with a shoulder roll as a precursor for back crawl. Kneeling dives, surface support (45 seconds, deep water), and understanding self-safety by knowing your own limits will be introduced. Endurance will be built through a 25-metre swim. 

    Level 5: Open to swimmers who have completed Red Cross Swim Kids Level 4. Swimmers will be introduced to back crawl (3 x 15m), sculling skills, whip kicks and stride dives and will further develop their front crawl with a focus on hand entry (3x15m). Safe boating skills will also be introduced in this level. Endurance will be developed with the dolphin kick and a 50-metre swim.   

    Level 6: Open to swimmers who have completed Red Cross Swim Kids Level 5. Swimmers will refine their front crawl with a focus on body roll and breathing (3 x 25m), back crawl with a focus on arm positions (3 x 25m) and learn an elementary backstroke (3 x 15m), safety on ice, and rescuing others with throwing assists. Swimmers demonstrate their ability to tread water in deep water for 1½ minutes and the front dive. Endurance will be built through a 75-metre swim. 

    Level 7: Open to swimmers who have completed Red Cross Swim Kids Level 6. Swimmers will build on their skills and endurance for the front crawl (50m), back crawl (50m), elementary backstroke (3x25m), and be introduced to whip kick. Safety lessons include airway and breathing obstructions and treading water using the eggbeater skill in the event of an unexpected fall into water. Endurance will be built through a 150-metre swim. 

    Level 8: Open to swimmers who have completed Red Cross Swim Kids Level 7. Swimmers will be introduced to breaststroke (3x15m), feet-first surface dives, and rescue entries. Safety lessons include the dangers of open water, hypothermia, and responding to choking. Front crawl and back crawl distances are increased to 75 meters each. Endurance will be built through the dolphin kick and a 300-metre swim. 

    Level 9/10: Open to swimmers who have completed Red Cross Swim Kids Level 8. Swimmers will refine their 100-metre front and back crawl, elementary backstroke (50m), and breaststroke (3x25m) and learn scissor kick as a warm-up/cool-down stroke for fitness. Safety lessons include making wise choices, peer influences, self-rescue from ice, sun safety, rescuing others from ice, and surface dives. Endurance will be built through a 400 or 500-metre swim. 

  • Develop one or more swimming strokes, working towards proficiency and increased endurance. Work with your Water Safety Instructor to choose strokes and set your goals.

    Red Cross Swim Adult and Teen registration

  • Did you know the Lifesaving Society recently updated their certification programs for lifeguards and instructors? View our lifeguard and instructor development program page to learn more.

    Leadership and Certification registration


  • Private lessons are offered as single class, 30 minute lessons or as multiple-week sessions.

    Private lesson registration

  • Experience monofin swimming as a mermaid or shark (shark fin and tail rental included, or bring your own)! Under the care of our magical instructors, you will participate in a mix of dry and wet class time that includes crafts, skills, games, and more as you immerse yourself in the world of the ocean. Learn valuable water safety skills, entries, and movement skills with and without tails, and develop a routine to share with your families on the last day of camp. 

    Registration unavailable (returning fall 2022)

  • Registration unavailable (returning fall 2022)

    Discover Scuba: Join one of our experienced Professional Association of Diving Instructors and get a taste of scuba in this 90 minute experience for all ages 8 and up. 

    PADI Open Water Certification: Join Strathcona County for our PADI Learn to Dive Program (Confined Water Course) brought to you by our friends at Ocean Sports.

    SUP (stand up paddle board) & kayak: Let our guides from Ocean Sports help you learn the basics before committing to all the expensive equipment.

  • This program is designed and targeted for swimmers who require complex physical, emotional, or cognitive adaptations. Instructors are knowledgable about a variety of conditions and modifications that are possible for swimmers with special needs. Lessons offered on Saturday mornings are during a dedicated lower stimulus time.

    Adapted aquatics registration

    Adapted Sensory: In this 1 on 1 experience enjoy the freedom and mobility offered in the water and work on basic movement skills like floats and glides. This program offers one-on-one instruction for individuals with complex needs that require direct supervision and support. Participants should be recommended for this program by a member of the Aquatic Programming Team. Please contact us at for additional information. 

    Adapted Basics: In this 2 participant class, work with your instructor to increase your comfort and confidence in the water as you build on your introductory swimming skills. Skills include floating, gliding, kicking, and front swim. 

    Adapted Strokes: In this 3 participant class, work with your instructor to improve endurance and increase swimming skills, distance, and efficiency. Participants should be recommended for this program by their previous swim instructor or be able to swim 25m with minimal assistance.

  • Homeschool lessons are offered during the traditional school year from October to June.

Strathcona County schools

Did you know we offer curriculum-based aquatics programs for schools?

Know before you go

There are a few things you may want to know before taking part in Strathcona County swimming programs.

Did you know? After more than 75 years in operation, the Canadian Red Cross is winding down its swimming and water safety program. Effective January 1, 2023 Strathcona County will be transitioning from the Red Cross Swim Kids program to the Lifesaving Society's Swim For Life learn to swim and lifesaving programs.

Know before you go: swimming

    • A bathing suit and towel for each participant 
    • A swim diaper for any participants who wear diapers or $2.00 to purchase one from the front desk 
    • A change of face mask for participants if you would like to wear one onto the pool deck
    • Any progress cards for your instructor to see previous comments, not mandatory! 
    • A personal combination lock if you would like to lock up your belongings or quarters or a Loonie to purchase a locker
    • All of our lesson facilities offer male, female, universal and specialty changerooms 
    • The male and female changerooms offer communal changing and showering space, as well as some private changing and washroom stalls, children over the age of 5 who use these changerooms must change in the room that best matches their gender identity 
    • The universal changeroom offers multiple private changing stalls and washrooms as well as a communal shower and locker areas. This changeroom is for any and all individuals! 
    • The specialty changeroom offers a specifically designed space for individuals with complex mobility needs, this space includes a complimentary sling and pulley system for guests who use a wheelchair as well as a large open space to facilitate easy changing. This space is opened on a per need basis, please stop by the front desk for access!
    • When you enter the pool deck area, please find the sign with the number or name of the class you have registered in. Your instructor will meet you there within a few minutes of the scheduled start time of your class. All of our classes run back-to-back so please be patient as they safely exit the water with their pervious class and make their way to your meeting spot.  

    • For leadership classes such a Bronzes, WSI, National Lifeguard or Aquatic Emergency Care please ask the front desk upon arrival where your class will be meeting that day 

    • If you are still unsure of where to go or how to find your class, please find a team member in a black shirt, come to the front desk, or approach any lifeguard or instructor, they will be happy to find you the help you need 

Common questions: swimming


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Last updated: Thursday, June 23, 2022
Page ID: 50034