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Pass the Test, Lose the Vest

YMCA of Greater Kansas City
Junio 9, 2017
Private Swim Lesson

We want your swimming experience to be fun and safe at the Y. Here are our swim testing procedures and pool rules. 


All swimmers ages 14 and younger are required to pass a swim test before being allowed in a pool without a Coast Guard-approved flotation device (PFD) or without direct adult supervision.  

To pass the test, swimmers must:

  • Jump into the deep end of the pool, submerge fully, return to the surface and immediately begin swimming without pushing off the wall.
  • Swim in a horizontal position, on stomach and on top of the water.
  • Exit the pool without assistance using either the wall or pool ladder.

Swim tests can be administered by a YMCA of Greater Kansas City certified lifeguard or a Y safety assistant.

The swim test will be offered as determined by each center to ensure the guard is able to monitor the pool at all times. 


  • Swimmers who pass the test will receive a green wristband.
  • Swimmers 8 and younger must have an adult (18 and older) remain on-site at the pool but may swim without a Coast Guard-approved floatation device (PFD) independently in the pool.
  • Swimmers age 9 and older may use the pool on their own without a Coast Guard-approved floatation device (PFD) and without an adult at the pool with them.


  • Swimmers who are still working toward passing the test will receive a red wristband.
  • Children ages 14 and younger who have not passed the test yet are required to wear a Coast Guard-approved floatation device (PFD) unless he or she is in arm length distance from an adult 18 years or older.
  • If the child is wearing a Coast Guard-approved PFD, then the adult (ages 18 or older) must be on-site but may monitor their child while using another part of the swimming pool. Children 5 years of age and younger must be within arms reach at all times.
  • If the child is NOT wearing a Coast Guard-approved PFD, then the adult must remain within arms reach of a child (one-on-one ratio) and be actively monitoring them in water at all times.

Please note: Lifeguards have the discretion to require a swimmer to wear a PFD at any time as well as require a swim test for any swimmer at any time.

Pool Rules

Y Lifeguards enforce rules for the benefit and safety of all swimmers. 

  • No running or rough play.
  • No diving allowed. 
  • No underwater breath holding permitted.
  • Flotation devices must be Coast Guard-approved.
  • Pool toys must be approved by a lifeguard, subject to number of pool users. 
  • Any person having an infectious or communicable disease shall be excluded from the pool/spa.
  • Food or drink is prohibited in the pool or on the deck area within 4 feet of the water.
  • Please shower prior to entering the pool.
  • Proper swimming attire is required.
  • A guardian (18 years and older) must be within arm’s reach of children 5 years and younger.
  • Non-potty-trained infants must be in swim diaper and appropriate swim suit.
  • No glass is permitted in the pool area.
  • Notify your lifeguard if you have any questions or concerns. We are here to serve YOU.