We provide a range of swimming opportunities including swim lessons for all ages and abilities.

Swim Lessons
Early Years

Preschool Learn to Swim Program

Our early years swim lessons are designed to focus on fundamental movement skills, stroke progressions, safety education and fun in the pool. View Programs

  1. Parent Participation 30 minute lessons are designed to introduce your child to the water and teach safety in and around the pool
  2. On My Own 30 minute lessons are designed to teach fundamental movement skills in swimming.  The basics of the four swimming strokes (front crawl, backstroke, breastroke and butterfly are introduced as well as safety around the pool
  3. On My Own 45 minute lessons are designed to add stroke technique to fundamental movement skills.  Endurance and safety in and around the pool are also taught.
School Age

School aged children (ages 5 - 12) can start or continue developing their swimming skills with NVRC's Swim lessons and NVRC Swim Academy. View Programs

Swimming requires learning new skills

There are a lot of technical skills to master when learning how to swim. Not all participants of the same age are at the same stage of  development. They have to be physically, cognitively and emotionally ready to learn a skill. This is why many children will need to take a level more than once to learn and master a new skill.

How to Help Your Child Succeed at Swimming

Research shows that kids who swim at least two times per week become better swimmers faster. Here are 3 tips for helping your child practice and improve their swimming:

  • Bring them to public swims and have fun with them in the pool.
  • Ask them to show you what they learned in class.
  • Practice swimming with them (if you’re able).

NVRC Swim Adademy

This program offers swimmers guidance through a swim
workout emphasizing skill, stroke improvement and swim endurance.
1.0 - 45min classes for 4-7yr olds who have completed Tiny Tots 5 or Swim Stage 1.
2.0 - 1hr sessions 2-3 times a week for 6-14yr olds who have completed NVRC Swim Academy 1.0 or Swim Stage 2B.
3.0 - 1hr sessions 2-3 times a week for 6-14yr olds who have completed NVRC Swim Academy 2.0 or Swim Stage 3.


From beginner to advanced, we offer a range of swimming lessons and programs for youth aged 12 years and older.
View Programs


We're here to help make you a strong swimmer. We provide adult lessons for beginners to advanced and check out our Women's Only lessons. View Programs

Adapted Swim Lessons

We offer adapted swimming lessons for children, youth and adults who have physical or developmental disabilities, or other support considerations.  Classes are low-ratio and are offered at our four aquatic facilities.  We encourage participation in our group lessons but if you feel that adapted lessons are the right fit for you or your family member, or it has been recommended by an aquatic staff member,  then please contact the Inclusion Programmer prior to your / their first lesson 604-983-6415. There is a limit of one registration per cycle.  Please see the Leisure Guide for specific dates and locations.  

How to Help Your Child Succeed at Swimming

Practice makes perfect!  Here are three simple tips on how you can help your child practice and improve their swimming skill:

  1. Take your kids to public swims and have fun with them in the pool
  2. Ask them to show you what they learned in class (and watch them practice!)
  3. Practice swimming with them if you are able.
Private Swim Lessons

Want more personalized instruction? Whether you are a beginner swimmer, wanting to improve your stroke, or training for a  triathalon, our private and semi-private 30-minute lessons can help you achieve your goals. Private lessons are available at the following pools:

Looking for summer private swim lessons? Log in to your account in our new registration system to view the available lessons.

  Single Lesson Package of 5 Lessons
Child Private (1/2 hour) $33 $150
Adult Private (1/2 hour) $34.65 $157.50
Child Semi Private - 2 Children (1/2 hour) $25 each child $115 each child
Adult Semi Private - 2 Adults (1/2 hour) $26.25 each adult $111.66 each adult
North Shore Community Swim Clubs

Are you or your child passionate about swimming?  The North Shore is home to six community swim clubs that offer training in competitive swimming, diving and waterpolo:

Swim Instructor and Lifeguard Training

How to Become a Swim Instructor & Lifeguard with the NVRC

North Vancouver Recreation & Culture offers all the courses you need to qualify to teach swimming and be a lifeguard.  Both swim instruction and lifeguarding certifications are needed in order to be employed at our pools. 

All courses require 100% attendance. Withdrawals must be made at least 8 days before the start of a course to receive a full refund.  Many of these courses require re-certification - please see certification chart below.

Please Take the Following Courses in Order:

Lifesaving Certifications

  • Bronze Star (optional) - pre-requisite: 12yrs of age
  • Bronze Medallion - pre-requisite: 13yrs of age or Bronze Star
  • Bronze Cross - includes CPR 'C'. pre-requisite: Bronze Medallion

Lifeguard Certifications

  • Standard First Aid (SFA) - includes CPR 'C - pre-requisite:  15yrs of age
  • National Lifeguard Program (NLP) - pre-requisite: 16yrs of age, Bronze Cross and AEC or SFA

Instructor Certifications

  • Water Safety Instructor Module 1 (WSI 1) -  pre-requisite: 15yrs of age and Swim Stage 3 or equivalent
  • Water Safety Instructor Module 2 (WSI 2) - pre-requisite: WSI 1
  • Swim Instructor Update with High Five - pre-requisite: Bronze Cross and WSI 2
  • Lifesaving Instructor (LSI) - pre-requisite: 16yrs of age and Bronze Cross


Certification  Re-certification Required
Bronze Medallion  No
Bronze Cross No
Standard First Aid OR Aquatic Emergency Care Every 3 years  or if you are employed as a lifeguard, every 2 years
CPR 'C' Certificate Every 3 years  or if you are employed as a lifeguard, every 1 year
NLP Pool Option  Every second year
NLP Waterfront Option (optional) Every second year

Learn more about careers in lifeguarding by visiting the Lifesaving Society website.

Swim Instructor

Certification Required To Teach  Re-certification Required
Lifesaving Instructor Canadian Swim Patrol
Bronze Star
Bronze Medallion
Bronze Cross 
Every second year
Water Safety Instructor Red Cross Program Every second year
Swim Instructor Update School-age Learn to Swim program Every year through professional development opportunities

Learn more about careers in swim instruction by visiting the Lifesaving Society and Red Cross websites.

To find out more about becoming a lifeguard or swim instructor, talk to the aquatic staff at one of the NVRC pools or contact Michelle Jones at 604-983-6541 or by email.