Asheville City preschoolers learn water safety, swimming skills


    Asheville City pre-schoolers are participating in an 8-week program at the YWCA. The students spend 45 minutes in the water, once a week. (Photo credit: WLOS staff)

    Living here in the mountains, not everyone has access to a swimming pool.

    So the Asheville YWCA wants to make sure children get the opportunity to enjoy the water.

    We met a group of kids who couldn't wait to slide right in.

    "When a child knows you can let them go a little bit, and swim or tread water, they think they have climbed Mount Everest," said Kitty Schmidt, aquatic director at the YWCA.

    No fear here: Asheville City pre-schoolers are participating in an 8-week program at the YWCA. The students spend 45 minutes in the water, once a week.

    The teachers and instructors say the students have come along way since the first day of class. Now they know how to use their big windmill arms, hold their breath--and overcome their fears.

    The pre-schoolers are also very aware of being safe around water.

    "If no one is around, you can't go under water," siad 5-year-old Ayden

    This is the first year for the preschool program at the YWCA.

    The Y also offers an after-school swim program for students at asheville middle school.

    And new this year is a free community swim program on Saturdays and Sundays through the end of May.

    The pilot program is part of a partnership with Asheville Parks and Rec.

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