Everyone can learn to swim Comfort comes first You can float vertically Overcoming fear IS learning to swim Having fun is the best way to learn Feel safe all the time Overcome fear without feeling afraid Go at your own pace Learn with your swimming people It’s amazing what 5 days can do Correct information does wonders!



Will this class work for me?

Yes. The class works for everyone who tries it. Just as 2+2 can only equal 4, if you use our method, you cannot get any other result but freedom in the water. This is why we can guarantee our work. It’s a system based on universal learning principles. Yes, the class will work for you if you are there, you ask all your questions, and you try it. As one student put it, “It cannot and does not fail.” —Mary Alice Yund, Chemist, Berkeley, CA

I’d love to learn, but I’m afraid to fail again.

Many, many people feel the same way FOR GOOD REASON. It’s hard to commit your hard-earned funds and vacation time if you aren’t sure it’ll be worth it. If you’re like many of our students, you’ve tried to learn to swim before. It’s been discouraging and you may have given up more than once. The prospect of failing again is daunting. But you know: “There must be a way.”

The system you’ve tried in the past is built upon two false premises: that people are already comfortable in the water and that learning to swim is learning strokes.  Those lessons work great for people who are not afraid. But it doesn’t work for those who are not comfortable in the water: about half of adults. You need the steps that create comfort in water. That’s Miracle Swimming. If you want to learn to swim, come to a place with a system designed specifically for you. You’ll only find it here and at the schools we’ve trained.

Why are your classes 3 hours long?

Because it takes that long to do the job the way we like to do it: well and efficiently.

It gives us an hour on land to discuss what’s coming up for you in the pool, and teach our system. Our system is very simple and it makes sense to everyone, yet it takes practice. For example, you probably think that working hard at something is the way to learn it. This belief will be debunked and you’ll come to understand what works best for overcoming fear: fun. You can read the system in our book and see it in our DVD. You learn it in our podcast as well.

Secondly, a two-hour pool session allows you to review what you did last time, settle into how you feel that day in the water, practice, learn more, and practice. In warm water, we’re always comfortable for two hours. It’s the ideal way to learn. People often wish the pool session were 3 hours.

What is the course format?

Eight three-hour sessions, one hour on land and two hours in a warm-water pool.

San Francisco class sessions are Saturdays from 4:30-7:30 p.m. and Sundays, 3-6 p.m.

If you take a vacation class (fly or drive and stay in a hotel where the class is taught) the class is 5 days long, usually Monday-Friday. We have morning and afternoon classes Monday, Wednesday and Thursday from 9-noon and 3-6. We have morning classes only on Tuesday and Friday. Friday’s class ends at 11 am in time for hotel checkout at noon. We have vacation classes Monday-Friday for two reasons: at a hotel, there are fewer guests in the pool than on weekends. And, if after class you have the weekend off before you return to work, it gives you time to absorb what you learned. Your mind is likely to be reeling with what you did and how many of your beliefs changed.

From time to time, a vacation class is a bit longer when it’s taught in conjunction with an Instructor Training. At such classes, instructors from other states or countries attend to learn to teach our method: they participate in an Essentials 1 course as trainees. This means more instructors for the Essentials 1 class.

Do I have to take the Essentials 1 course first?

Many people think that because they are comfortable in shallow water, they’re ready to learn to be comfortable in the deep. But the reason they (you) are comfortable in shallow water is because you rely on the bottom or the side of the pool for your safety.

True or true?!

By attending our classes, you’re saying you want to rely on yourself for your safety, not on the bottom or the side. You must not expect yourself to learn in a place where you don’t feel safe. In the deep end, how are you going to feel safe?

You’ll learn to feel safe in a new way and at a new level in Essentials 1. Then you’ll be ready for Essentials 2.

If you know more than others in class, you will not be held back. There are things you may think you know that you could know more deeply.

You may take the online Essentials 1 course first, of course. If you do, and you send us a video of yourself doing the prerequisite skills of the Essentials 2 course, then you may go directly to the Essentials 2 course. But you must take the online course first: the course content is a major portion of what is missing from traditional swimming lessons. Its importance is indisputable.

Will I learn to swim?

Yes, we fully stand behind our system. You will learn to swim if you use it for the series. You may learn to swim before getting to the end of the 5-course series. To us, Learning to Swim means oneness with the water and being able to rest calmly in deep water, moving from here to there as you please for as long as you wish. Learning strokes is learning efficiency, but not confidence or safety. We will teach you strokes if you wish, after you’ve learned confidence and safety.

You can learn strokes from us in person or at home with our live online freestyle course.

Please convince yourself of this truth: you cannot learn freestyle while you’re still out of control in water. People who “learn” freestyle while they’re still out of control in deep water do not swim: they stroke. Their strokes are stiff. They can’t learn to breathe, tread water or rest: nor can they rest in deep water. Swimming implies comfort and oneness with the water. This is what you’ll learn from us. You’ll learn to swim in our Essentials 1, Essentials 2, or Deep Water Play courses. You’ll learn freestyle in our Freestyle class. This is a distinction you’ll most likely not find in any other swim school or YMCA/Red Cross offering…until they’ve read our book and completed our trainings.

I just need to learn the breathing. Do you teach it?

One of the many beliefs of people who want to learn to swim is that they already have the arm stroke and kick, they can go from here to there, but the breathing isn’t comfortable yet: they JUST need to learn to get air. If you feel this way, we ask you these questions: are you tense as you move through the water? Are you swimming “uphill”, in other words, are your feet a foot or two lower than your head? Do you lift your head up and out of the water to try to get air? Do you push down on the water to get air? Do your arms and legs feel disconnected from each other?

If the answer is yes to any (most likely all) of the above, it is not breathing that’s holding you back. Learning to breathe is not your next step. Learning to let the water do all the work is the next step: in other words, overcoming your fear that it won’t. Swimming only takes as much energy as walking…unless you’re doing far more work than you need to on account of being tense. You can learn why you don’t need to be tense. When you’re no longer tense, it’s simple to learn to breathe, and yes, we’ll teach you.

What is the age range of class members?

20 to 90. Older students are welcome! And, we have had some high school students by special arrangement. Most students are 30-75. All adults are welcome.

What if I wear contacts?

You may wear them under goggles if you wish. Or, you can buy goggles that have your prescription ground into them. Choose a pair of goggles that fit your face and don’t leak, first. THEN have them ground.

Should I eat before class?

The amount you can eat before class and remain comfortable is different for each person. We recommend eating lightly but enough that hunger won’t distract you in class. We are on land for an hour before we get into the pool.

What’s the difference between your video and your book?

The video/DVD is a video of excerpts of our Introductory class and our full Essentials 1 class: it contains the problems of afraid swimming students and the solutions that work 100% of the time in the only video where you can find them. It’s the picture that’s worth 1000 words. It’s 47 minutes long. The book is “48 hours long” in that it teaches every concept and skill covered in the 48 hours of the Essentials 1 and Essentials 2 classes, give or take one or two. It has all the information that will make you free in deep water as long as you read it through and practice what it gives. It speaks your language and it’s friendly and simple.

I can’t tread water, breathe, or float. Do you teach something different from what my previous lessons taught?

Yes, we teach what you need to know to feel safe in water, rather than mechanics. What do you need to know? How to be in control in the water. How the water works with your body. How to maneuver at will. Skills like floating, breathing, and treading all come predictably when you are completely in control in water: you’ll no longer be concerned about survival. You’ll be ready to learn the next steps. You’ll be in control  your arms, legs, and breath.

Are there any similar classes where I live?

We have licensed instructors teaching in Sarasota, Brandon and West Palm in Florida, Chicago, and Decatur AL. We also teach in Palm Springs, CA, Atlanta GA and occasionally in San Francisco, NYC and Europe. We attract and train more instructors each year.

Stay tuned for our Instructors page to be added.

What do your different classes teach?

Please see our Courses page.

I’ve been swimming like this. How do I fix it?

Often people ask us what’s wrong with what they’ve been trying. Funny thing is, the answer is almost always the same: you’ve been thinking that what you’re doing with your arms and legs is what’s keeping you from feeling safe. This is not how it works. Chances are 99.9% that it’s not your stroke…it’s your lack of calm in the water. Once you’ve overcome your fear, your problem will be gone. You may then want to learn strokes like freestyle once your attention can be focused on mechanics rather than survival. So, if your freestyle needs fixing, become confident first. Then take a Freestyle class.

Why do some vacation classes cost more than others?

The biggest price differences are determined by the varying rates from one hotel to the next. Prices are also affected by the costs of airfares and meals of instructors flying to classes and the number of instructors and spotters covering a class.

How can I maximize my chances for success?

By letting yourself be yourself. By going slowly and not pushing yourself. By going at your own pace and not comparing yourself to others. Ask all your questions. Play. Be a kid. Give yourself time. Suspend deadlines.

What do you mean by “Miracle”?

Our students named us Miracle Swimming. According to A Course In Miracles, a miracle is a collapse of time that results from the use of universal laws. Achievements that would ordinarily take arduous effort and significant time are suddenly accomplished without effort in a short time. This is the experience of students at MSSA. Because we have a new system of teaching, a system that goes straight to the heart of the matter, you spend no time spinning your wheels or practicing something irrelevant to what you really want. Instead, you spend 100% of your time overcoming fear in water and learning to swim.

Your web site sounds too good to be true. Is it for real?

Yes, it’s for real. There are ways you can check it out further before taking classes. Feel free to call and ask your questions at 941-921-6420. You can read our book and see the video. The podcast will answer most of the same questions. You can read our Student Comments page which lists all students’ comments and we can provide references.

Why do your classes cost what they cost?

First, our classes are three to five times longer than traditional classes. They have to be, in order to deliver what you want and what we promise. Secondly, we incur pool rent wherever we teach and we often have travel expenses. Third, your course fee pays our full time employees’ salaries, instructors’ fees, and all our annual overhead. Whereas the YMCA covers some of their costs via United Way donations, other YMCA programs, and local fundraising efforts, and other traditional swim classes are subsidized by tax bases say, in municipal learn-to-swim programs, we do not and are not. It’s all on you. Lastly, we researched this original, breakthrough teaching technology that isn’t available anywhere else. Yet it’s virtually the only way to learn to truly prevent panic and overcome your fear in water. We have 39 years’ experience doing one thing: teaching adults who are afraid in water to swim and to prevent panic. There is no one with this experience and no greater value than our classes in the Learn-to-Swim universe. You get the value you’ve paid for because only here will you find every answer you’ve sought. Read our book: be convinced. Also see our Student Comments. We show you all students’ comments; we don’t pick and choose.

Can I take the class for less?

Compared to other swim classes, ours may appear pricey. But students tell us they don’t learn at other schools. Please compare hours of instruction, warm water, instructor qualifications and quality of results. When students take our class, they say, “There’s no number that can be assigned to the value I’ve received.” Or, “This is worth at least as much as what I paid.”

Our prices are at the lowest level possible to keep our organization viable.

Am I ready to take your Freestyle Class?

You’re ready to take our Freestyle class in a shallow pool if you’re at ease in shallow water. You can float, unfloat on front and back, do seal rolls, stand on your hands (or feel comfortable trying), do somersaults (or feel comfortable trying), do whale jumps, and play freely. You must also understand what “being in your body” means and feels like.

You’re ready to take our Freestyle class in deep water if you can do the above skills in deep water (not whale jumps) and rest in deep water, unfettered by depth.

What new ideas has Miracle Swimming contributed to the Aquatics Industry?

Miracle Swimming has made new distinctions which can augment the power and efficiency of swimming lessons worldwide. Some of these are:

  • Swimming is more than the ability to do strokes in shallow water
  • A student must be in control in order to learn to swim (i.e. not afraid)
  • A person who can swim freestyle in shallow water but who cannot rest calmly in deep water cannot swim
  • Children and adults have different needs when learning to swim
  • Overcoming fear of water makes learning to swim possible: learning strokes does not make overcoming fear possible.
  • A person must know how the water works in order to learn to swim (the phrase “how the water works” is new to aquatics via Miracle Swimming)
  • There should be 3 times as many swimming lessons for adults as there are for kids in the U.S., since there are 3 times as many adults in the U.S. as there are kids
  • The way to get every child to learn to swim is to teach every adult first to swim: what parents do, kids do.
  • Teaching afraid students to heal their fear and prevent panic requires knowledge that’s not needed to teach students who are not afraid. The large instruction agencies have not been trained in this knowledge. It was brought to light and developed here.
  • Passing a swimming test should require a demonstration of confidence and competence in deep water.
  • The requirement of knowing how to swim to graduate from school should be reevaluated, revised, and reinstated. It was removed because swim instructors could not succeed with the afraid students. Reasons given may have been different.
  • Traditional swimming lessons given to afraid students interrupt learning.
For the Online Course, what if I don’t have a pool to practice in?

The purpose of the online Essentials 1 course is to take a significant step toward overcoming fear and learning to swim without a pool during times when you can’t swim for whatever reason. The course places you on a path that cannot fail. It takes you a third to half of the way down the road toward learning the course content of the in-person Essentials 1 Course. If you feel enthused about learning to float before a local pool opens, we recommend that you purchase an inflatable kiddie pool to place in your back yard or basement. You can literally learn to float, back and front, and put your face in water comfortably there. The success our students have had with this is thrilling. The online course teaches you what to do when you get to the pool. You don’t have to take our in-person course. You’re welcome to, of course.

Can my spouse take an advanced course with me though s/he hasn't taken the Essentials 1 course?
We have diligently tried to accommodate the spouses  and family members of grads who want to take an advanced course MrSw with their grad. They are always nice people. They really want to learn. They’re curious about MrSw. However, they have not bought into the 5 Circles. Staying in the 1st Circle is not their goal—they are already in it.  Before long, they dismiss the goal—the main focus of the course– as not theirs. They think they “have a better way” for them. (And they may, but it doesn’t belong in a MrSw course.) This is distracting for the Miracle Swimming grads whose goal IS the 1st Circle. It’s less than perfect for the non-grad. It’s awkward for the MrSw grad whose spouse is in the course. It’s awkward for the instructor to have two “groups.” Therefore, we don’t do it. 
BTW, many times we’ve found that the person who is not a MrSw grad believes they’re a better swimmer than they actually are; they actually need the teaching of our Essentials 1 course! If they take it some have been quite astonished to find that they had something to learn!
How do you create safety in the time of covid?
2020-2022: It is our intention that all students arrive without Covid 19 and leave without it (students and instructor)!
In order to take control of the parts of prevention that we can control, we agree upon consistently wearing masks if we’re indoors and staying at least 6 feet apart.
In a class situation where you’re relating to each other, accustomed to certain ways of moving and interacting, it takes a little more mindfulness to protect yourselves and one another. Please give yourselves and others permission to do the things that keep each other stay safe!
For more information about our Covid 19 response, please visit our Covid 19 response page.