The Student News Site of Souderton Area High School

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The Student News Site of Souderton Area High School

The Arrowhead

The Student News Site of Souderton Area High School

The Arrowhead

The Arrowhead

Harleysville pool offers water safety programs to all

Offering swim lessons during the summer, the Harleysville pool aims to increase swim safety among youth. The pool opens on June 1.
Harleysville pool offers water safety programs to all

With the summer season quickly approaching, the Harleysville Pool offers community members a place to cool down and learn water safety.
The Harleysville Pool has been a continuous part of the local community since 1957.
According to the Harleyville Pool website, local citizens first built the pool as a community effort to provide a safe way to swim locally. This occurred following a drowning in the community at a local creek.
The community then led the charge for building the pool through volunteering and donating to open the pool.
Lifeguard Maddie Healy said that swim lessons are important, sharing that lessons are “a great thing for the community.”
The pool teaches children how to swim through two programs.
Although the programs are separate, they share the goal of getting children to be confident enough to swim independently.
The first program works with the Harleysville Summer Day Camp to teach each camper how to swim over the course of eight weeks.
The camp provides three time sessions of students throughout the morning and each time session has around 100 kids.
Assistant manager Sara Reuss said that the swim lesson program has grown “significantly” since she started working there 10 years ago.
“It started as a very small program, ” said Reuss. “We only had about three classes and each class had around six-eight students.”
The second program is a newer one for the pool, exclusively for pool members.
These lessons can either be one-on-one or with a group.
Both of these programs aim to get children strong enough to pass the Deep Water Test.
The test consists of one lap across a short pool, 30 seconds of treading water and a lap back.
If swimmers can do so without error, they will receive a deep water band. This band gives them access to the pool’s diving board and two slides.
The bands also indicate to lifegaurds that the person is a strong enough swimmer to swim on their own.
Lifeguard Claudia Heim said that the pool doesn’t just teach kids how to swim, but also strengthens their skills.
Once a child passes the deep water test, they are taught different strokes, ways to make swimming easier, and endurance training.
Lifeguard Stella Heim said the process of getting students to be able to pass the test can be a “gratifying” experience.
“The students get better and better, and once they are ready, you give them the deep water test,” Heim said. “It’s gratifying to know that you got them to where they are.”
The program moves with the child, allowing them to move levels and get more or less support if needed.
Lifeguard Adelina Cutrona is proud of her experience teaching children at the pool.
“One of my success stories was when I taught a child how to be confident in the water and pass his deep water test,” Cutrona said. “I felt proud of him for becoming a confident swimmer.”
Swim lesson aid Lauren Scanlon has also enjoyed her experience teaching children. “It was nice to see their skills improve throughout [the summer],” Scanlon said.

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Colin Lucas, Staff Writer

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