Awards Progression & Water Safety System

Swim Lessons Awards Progression Bracelets

Swim Lessons Awards Progression & Water Safety System

We are excited to announce the implementation of the Swim Lessons University’s brand new Swim Lessons Awards Progression & Water Safety System! Now, your students too can benefit from yet another unique feature of the Swim Lessons University program.

The Swim Lessons University Awards Progression features a swim bracelet system that is an immediate, effective, and fun way to recognize your students’ progress. Even more importantly, you will find the color-coded water safety system is yet another means of educating parents on swim safety and drowning prevention.

How it works

Upon arrival for your student’s first swimming class, you (the instructor) present the child with the appropriate colored, waterproof bracelet (the type used in the popular Lance Armstrong “LIVESTRONG” campaign). The bracelet’s color is determined by the Swim Lessons University course that you have determined to be best suited for the child, i.e., Swim 101, Swim Strokes 201, Advanced Strokes 301, etc.

In addition, each skill in which your student will learn in the course is abbreviated and printed on the bracelet next to a star. When your student masters the skill, you use your “special star puncher” and punch out the star next to the new skill the child has demonstrated he/she has learned. Upon successful completion of each skill abbreviated on the child’s present bracelet, you then present your student with the next bracelet, which is a new color with a new set of skills. This, of course, is how you advance and graduate your student to the next level/course. Not only do the bracelets serve as a reward, they also serve as an indicator of the child’s skill level, similar to the karate belt system, which brings us to the unique water safety aspect of bracelet system.

"The SAFETY Component"

WATER SAFETY is the other key dimension to the Swim Lessons University Awards Progression & Water Safety System. The colors you see—serve a significant purpose. The colors communicate to parents, teachers, and lifeguards the skill level of the child through the color-coded system. The bracelets are color-coded as follows:

Swim 101 Awards Bracelet (Red)

Swim 101 Awards Bracelet (Red)

Price: $0.95
Item# SWIM_101_BRACELET

Swim 102/103 Awards Bracelet (Dark Red)

Swim 102/103 Awards Bracelet (Dark Red)

Price: $0.95
Item# SWIM_102_BRACELET

1. RED (and DARK RED) stands for DANGER: The Swim 100 level bracelet is red. A red bracelet communicates to parents, lifeguards, and teachers that the child is always in danger when in or around the water. These safety guidelines should be followed:

  • "Touch supervision" be employed at all times when this child is in or around the water.
  • A U.S. Coast Guard approved Lifejacket should be used anytime touch supervision is not possible.

Swim 201/202 Awards Bracelet (Yellow)

Swim 201/202 Awards Bracelet (Yellow)

Price: $0.95
Item# SWIM_201_BRACELET

2. Yellow stands for CAUTION: The Swim 200 level bracelet is yellow. A yellow bracelet communicates to parents, lifeguards, and teachers that caution should be taken when the child is in or around the water. These safety guidelines should be followed:

  • "Close and constant supervision" should always be employed when the child is in or around the water.
  • A U.S. Coast Guard approved Lifejacket should be used anytime "close and constant" supervision is not possible.

Swim 301/302 Awards Bracelet (Green)

Swim 301/302 Awards Bracelet (Green)

Price: $0.95
Item# SWIM_301_BRACELET

3. GREEN stands for GO: The Swim 300 bracelet is green. Green represents go, and communicates to parents, lifeguards, and teachers that this child is a good swimmer. However, these safety guidelines should still be followed:

  • "Constant supervision" should still be employed when the child is in or around the water.
  • While a U.S. Coast Guard approved Lifejacket is not required, if the child is under constant supervision around a swimming pool, it is still strongly recommended that when the child is around a body of water such as a lake or river.

I.M. Swimmer Graduate Awards Bracelet (Blue)

I.M. Swimmer Graduate Awards Bracelet (Blue)

Price: $0.95
Item# IM_SWIMMER_GRADUATE_AWARDS_BRACELET

4. BLUE stands for STRONG: The Swim Lessons University graduation bracelet is blue. Blue communicates to parents, lifeguards, and teachers that the child is a strong swimmer and is proficient in the water. However, these safety guidelines should still be followed:

  • "Constant adult supervision" is always recommended for children under the age of 16.
  • If a lifeguard is not present, a buddy system should be used for those ages 16 and older who have earned the blue bracelet.

Swim 401/402 Awards Bracelet

Swim 401/402 Awards Bracelet

Price: $0.95
Item# Swim_401_Bracelet

The Swim 400 bracelet is turquoise. There are five (5) skill abbreviations and stars in Lifesaving Strokes 400 level course, with a blue bracelet awarded upon graduation:

  1. Scissors Kick (SK) - Performs Scissors kick for 30 feet.
  2. Elementary Backstroke Kick (EBK) - Performs the Elementary Backstroke kick for 30 feet.
  3. Sidestroke (SS) - Performs the Sidestroke for 30 feet.
  4. Elementary Backstroke (EB) - Performs the Elementary Backstroke for 30 feet
  5. Treading (T) - Treads water for 60 seconds using either the scissors, whip or eggbeater kick.

Star Puncher for Awards Bracelet, 1/4"

Star Puncher for Awards Bracelet, 1/4"

Price: $9.95
Item# STAR_PUNCHER

Star Puncher for Awards Bracelet: Instantly reward your students when they master a new skill by using our 1/4-inch Star Puncher! When your students master a new skill, simply use this handy star puncher to punch out the star beside the abbreviated skill!

When should students wear their Awards Bracelets?

Encourage students to wear their bracelet to every class! This provides the you or the instructor with instant information about the student’s skills. For example, do you have a 1-Star Swim 101 student or a 5-Star Swim 101 student? Just as important, you can instantly reward your student when he/she masters a new skill.

Even better yet—encourage your students to wear their bracelets to and from the pool. Children will be very proud of their bracelets and parents can share their child’s accomplishments with their friends and relatives!

It is important to remind parents to focus on what their child has accomplished, and avoid pressuring the child about what he or she hasn’t yet mastered. The backbone of the bracelet awards idea is that it is a reward system and it should be just that: A reward!

What Skills are the 6 Major Skills Abbreviated on each Awards Bracelet?

Swim 101 – RED BRACELET

There are six (6) skill abbreviations and stars in Swim 101 (ages 3-5). Upon graduation, a yellow bracelet is awarded when the child masters the sixth and final skill: “Independent Pop-up Breathing” during a basic surface swim. The surface swim with pop-up style breathing is essentially a basic swim at the surface of the water with the face in the water. The swimmer should be primarily swimming in a horizontal position, although some change in body position is expected during the breath. The important thing is that the breath is taken comfortably and without struggle or hesitation, and that the child resumes swimming in the horizontal position after each breath.

Swim 101: Front Kick (FK)- Performs the front kick with noodle (Swim 101) for 15 feet.

Swim 101: Back Kick (BK)- Performs the back kick with noodle for 15 feet.

Swim 101: Breath Control (BC) - Performs 3 comfortable submersions.

Swim 101: In-line Kick (IK)- Performs the in-line kick with barbell, face in the water, for 3 seconds.

Swim 101: Dependent Pop-up Breathing (DPB) - Performs the surface swim with pop-up style breathing for 15 feet. (Dependent means that the student is performing the skill correctly but still needs the SwimWays Power Swimmer or other approved progressive flotation aide.)

Swim 101: Independent Pop-up Breathing (IPB) - Performs the surface swim with pop-up style breathing for 15 feet. (Independent means that the student can now perform the skill independent of the Power Swimmer or other approved progressive flotation aide.)

***Students may use the SwimWays Power Swimmer or other approved progressive flotation aide on all skills EXCEPT “Independent Pop-up Breathing.”

Swim 102/103 – DARK RED BRACELET

There are six (6) skill abbreviations and stars in Swim 102/Swim 103, with a yellow bracelet awarded upon graduation for mastering the sixth and final skill: Independent Freestyle. Independent Freestyle means that the student can perform a basic overarm front crawl for 25-30 feet with the face in the water without the SwimWays Power Swimmer or other approved flotation aide. Dependent Freestyle means that the student can perform a basic overarm front crawl for 25-30 feet with the face in the water but still needs the flotation aide.

Swim 102/103: Front Kick (FK)- Performs the front kick with the kickboard for 25-30 feet.

Swim 102/103: Back Kick (BK) - Performs the back kick with noodle for 25-30 feet.

Swim 102/103: Breath Control (BC) - Performs 3 comfortable submersions.

Swim 102/103: In-line Kick (IK)- Performs the in-line kick with barbell, face in the water, for 3 seconds.

Swim 102/103: Dependent Freestyle (DFR) - Performs the freestyle/front crawl with face in the water for 25-30 feet. (Dependent means that the student is performing the skill but needs the SwimWays Power Swimmer or other approved progressive flotation aide.)

Swim 102/103: Independent Freestyle (IFR) - Performs the freestyle/front crawl with face in the water for 25-30 feet. (Independent means that the student is performing the skill now without the SwimWays Power Swimmer or other approved progressive flotation aide.)

Swim Strokes 201 / 202 – YELLOW BRACELET

There are six (6) skill abbreviations and stars in Swim Strokes 201/202, with a green bracelet awarded upon graduation for mastering the sixth and final skill: “Freestyle with Side Breathing.”

Swim 201/202: Refined In-line Kick (RIK)- Performs the in-line kick without buoyancy equipment.

Swim 201/202: Refined Back Kick (RBK) - Performs the back kick without buoyancy equipment.

Swim 201/202: Refined Breath Control (RBC) - Performs 10 consecutive rhythmic bobs.

Swim 201/202: Backstroke (BS) - Performs the backstroke for 25 feet.

Swim 201/202: Freestyle (FS)- Performs the freestyle for 25 feet (no side breathing required).

Swim 201/202: Side Breathing (SB) - Performs the freestyle with side breathing for 25 feet.

Advanced Swim Strokes 301/302– GREEN BRACELET

There are six (6) skill abbreviations and stars in Swim 301/302, with a blue bracelet awarded upon graduation for mastering the sixth and final skill: “a 40 yard IM.”

Swim 301/302: Refined Side Breathing in Freestyle (RSB) - Performs freestyle with side breathing for 30 feet.

Swim 301/302: Refined Back Stroke (RBS) - Performs backstroke for 30 feet.

Swim 301/302: Butterfly Kick (BUK) - Performs the butterfly kick for 30 feet.

Swim 301/302: Breaststroke Kick (BK) - Performs the breaststroke kick for 30 feet.

Swim 301/302: Butterfly (BUS) - Performs the butterfly stroke for 30 feet.

Swim 301/302: Breaststroke (BRS) - Performs the breaststroke for 30 feet.

I.M. Swimmer Graduation– BLUE BRACELET

This is the graduation bracelet awarded for mastering all skills including a 40 yard I.M.

I.M. Swimmer: Graduation (blue) - Performs 40 yard Individual Medley (I.M.). 10 yards of each stroke: butterfly, backstroke, breaststroke, and freestyle.

Should teachers change the lesson plan once a student masters one of the six skills?

At Swim Lessons University, we do not alter the lesson plan because a certain skill is mastered for two reasons.

  1. One reason is “skill transfer.” The skills that a child develops on one exercise will transfer another. For example, improving one’s breath holding and freestyle kicking skills transfers to the in-line kick, which transfers to the swim. Just because a child can freestyle kick doesn’t mean you should eliminate the kicking exercise. In addition, as the individual skills improve from isolated practice, so your student’s final product.
  2. A second reason is “confidence transfer.” When a child becomes “good” at a particular skill, the confidence the child gains from being successful at that skill will lead to his/her confidence and determination that he/she can get learn a skill he/she currently isn’t so good proficient at yet. When instructors spend too much time working only on the skills that the child can’t do, students tend lose confidence in themselves and become frustrated.

Finally, every skill — even those that are acknowledged through awards —can still be improved. Michael Phelps, arguably the best swimmer ever, still practices his freestyle kick with a kickboard every day!