• Winter 2022 swimming lesson dates 

    Day Start date End date No class No. of lessons Start time Duration
    Monday January 10 March 21 Feb 21 10 6 p.m. and 6:45 p.m. 45 min.
    Wednesday January 12 March 23 Feb 23 10 6 p.m. and 6:45 p.m. 45 min.
    Friday January 7 March 18 Feb. 25 10

    6 p.m. and 6:45 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

    45 min.
    Saturday January 8 March 19 Feb. 19 10

    10:30 a.m. and 11:15 a.m

    12 p.m. and 12:45 p.m.

    45 min.
    Sunday January 9 March 20 Feb. 20 10

    10:30 a.m. and 11:15 a.m

    12 p.m. and 12:45 p.m.

    45 min.


Latest updates

  • COVID-19 protocols: 
    • Effective Friday, September 3, in accordance with public health restrictions, proof of full COVID-19 vaccination status and government-issued identification is required at entry to University of Manitoba sport and recreational facilities for:

      • All users of UM’s gyms/fitness/workout facilities, aged 12 years and older
      • All participants in recreational/sport programs aged 18 and older (verification of age may be requested)
      • All guardians/spectators accompanying recreational/sport program participants 17 years and younger
    • At this time only those who can provide proof of approved COVID-19 vaccination status will be admitted.

    • As of Thursday, September 23, participants using indoor UM sport and recreation facilities can remove their face masks when engaging in physical activity and while in their individual workout spaces (i.e., at equipment). Movement in and between equipment/activities will require masking at all times.

      Visit the umanitoba.ca/coronavirus for more information

Fall, winter, spring, summer Learn to swim programs

Lessons for children 4 years of age and younger (Parent and Tot, Tots 1 and Tots 2) will not be included in this offering at this time.

  • ICS swimming lessons

    (AGES 5-13)

    ICS is a dynamic aquatic program in which participants learn to swim better, faster. It promotes participation, fun and success in the water. It is the only program that allows children to learn at their own pace, with rewards at every step of the way. Children will be grouped according to their skill level, so it’s easy to register all of your children at the same time.

    Length: 45 minutes

    Leader to swimmer ratio: 1 leader to 5-6 swimmers

    Sessions offered: fall, winter, spring, summer

    Lesson days offered: Monday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday (dates and times above)

    Price: $135

  • The swim academy

Beginner Youth ICS

(AGES 10-15)

This program is designed especially for youth/teens that have little or no experience in the water.

Length: 45 minutes

Leader to swimmer ratio: 1 leader to 5-6 swimmers

Sessions offered: fall, winter, spring

Lesson days offered: Saturdays at 10:30 a.m. (dates and times above)

Price: $135

Please Note: Registration for this program is not available online. Eligibility must be approved by a member of our Aquatics Leadership Team. Via email to mu.aquatics@umanitoba.ca, and share with us the age of the child who wishes to participate and a brief description of their swim ability. 


  • Private/semi-private swimming lessons

    (AGES ANY)

    Private and semi-private swimming lessons are available for individuals who require or want more personalized instruction. All selections are open to children and adults. For semi-private lessons, it is the responsibility of the participants to find the group they would like to swim with and register for the program at the same time. A semi-private lesson is for 2 people of approximately the same ability. 

    Length: 45 minutes

    Leader to swimmer ratio: private, 1 to 1, semi-private 1 to 2

    Sessions offered: fall, winter, spring, summer

    Lesson days offered: Monday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday (dates and times above)

    Private: $360
    Semi-private per participant: $200

  • private swimming lessons

FALL, WINTER, SPRING Special interest swimming lessons

Swim Fit

(AGES 11-16)

Here is your opportunity to get fit in the pool! Swim two times per week working on endurance and technique. Participants should have completed the ICS Program (or equivalent) prior to registering for this program.

Length: TBD

Sessions offered: spring
*Our original hope was to re-start Swim Fit in Winter 2022 but due to pool space considerations we have decided to wait until Spring 2022.

Junior Bisons swimming

  • Mini Bisons

    (AGES 7-14)

    The Mini Bisons swim program is designed to introduce young swimmers who have taken swimming lessons (to an appropriate level) to the skills required for competitive swimming. Swimmers 10 years old or younger (and new to the program) may need to have an assessment done prior to enrollment. To set up an assessment please contact Dillon at Dillon.Perron@umanitoba.ca. 

    Training time: 1 hour, 1 - 3 times/week

    Swimmers may choose from:

    Saturdays OR
    Tuesdays and Thursdays OR
    Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays

    Dates: January 11 - 19, 2022

    Saturdays: $125
    Tuesdays and Thursdays: $250

    Junior and youth Bisons Swimming

  • Junior Bisons logo

Steps to becoming a lifeguard

Step 1: Bronze Star

(AGES 10-12)

This course is the first step to becoming a lifeguard if you are under the age of 13.

Bronze Star is a preview to the world of lifeguarding. This course will introduce basic lifesaving skills and water safety procedures. Participants develop problem-solving and decision-making skills as individuals and as members of a team. An endurance swim of 400 metres is required for the successful completion of this level.

Offered: fall, winter, spring

Length: 1 hour

Prerequisites: Swim ability is the only prerequisite, participants must feel comfortable in deep water without a floatation device. 

Materials: Canadian Lifesaving Manual (recommended) $49

Price: $140

Step 2: Bronze Medallion

(AGES 13+)

Bronze Medallion focuses on the four components of a water rescue – judgement, knowledge, skill and fitness. Rescuers learn tows, carries, and release methods in preparation for challenging rescues of increased risk. This is the first step to becoming a lifeguard if you are 13 years of age or older. Endurance swim of 400 metres in 12 minutes is required for successful completion of this level. 

Prerequisites: 13 years of age or older (or have successfully completed Bronze Star)

Length: 1.75 hours

Sessions offered: fall, winter, spring, summer

Days offered: Mondays 6:00 p.m. and Saturdays 10:30 a.m. (dates above)

Materials: Canadian Lifesaving Manual (required) $49, whistle, gloves and CPR barrier device also required. May be purchased at the Active Living Centre customer service desk ($12)

Price: $154 (includes exam)

Step 3: Bronze Cross

(AGES 13+)

Bronze Cross teaches the difference between lifesaving and lifeguarding, the principles of emergency procedures, and teamwork. Bronze Cross is a prerequisite for National Lifeguard. Lifesavers learn the skills involved in the rescue of a victim with a spinal injury, the rescue of an unconscious victim, and the rescue of a victim with deteriorating circumstances. Endurance swim of 400 metres in 11 minutes is required for successful completion of this level.

Prerequisites: Successful completion of Bronze Medallion.
Participants must bring their Bronze Medallion card with them to the first class.

Length: 2.25 hours

Sessions offered: fall, winter, spring, summer

Days offered: Fridays 6:00 p.m. and Sundays 10:30 a.m.

Materials: Canadian Lifesaving Manual (required) $49, whistle, gloves and CPR barrier device also required. May be purchased at the Active Living Centre customer service desk ($12)

Price: $154

Step 4: National Lifeguarding (NL) Award

(AGE 16+)

NL is the nationally recognized lifeguard certification and is the final step to becoming a lifeguard. The program includes classroom and water activities. 100% attendance and participation are required. The final exam will be held on the final day of the course, accommodations for an alternate exam time/date will not be accommodated.

Offered: fall, winter, spring

Prerequisites: Successful completion of Bronze Cross and Standard First Aid with CPR C certification. Proof of each must be presented on the first day of the program.

Participants MUST be 16 years by the final day of the program.

Required materials: Alert textbook ($43), National Lifeguard Award Guide ($24). Participants are also required to bring a whistle and barrier device. May be purchased at the ALC Customer Service Desk ($12)

Length: Approx 44 hours total

Price: $300

Day and Time: 

Holiday break course: 
December 27: 8:30-6:00 p.m. *
December 28: 8:30-6:00 p.m. *
December 29: 8:30-6:00 p.m. *
December 30: 8:30-6:00 p.m. *
December 31: 7:30-4:00 p.m. *

*Candidates will be given a 30 minute lunch break

Winter Session:
Sundays January 9 - March 20, 2022  – 1:30 - 6:30 p.m. 

Our commitment to your safety

  • Sanitization, equipment and PPE

    • Swim leaders (when not in the water) and Mini U leadership team members will be wearing masks during lesson time. 
    • Swimmers are encouraged to bring their own lifejackets/ aquatic equipment (i.e. goggles/ pool noodles/ flutter board etc). 
    • Our pool equipment (flutter boards, lifejackets, flippers etc) and high touch surfaces (i.e. stair rails) will be sanitized by aquatics staff between each group of swim lesson participants and by custodial staff at the conclusion of each day. 
  • children in swimming pool with instructor

What to expect when you arrive

Arrival and Departure - Swimmers / Parents & Guardians

  • All swimmers and family members are asked to screen for COVID-19 symptoms at home before attending. Anyone exhibiting symptoms will be turned away. Please ensure you stay home when you or someone in your household is ill.
  • Masks are mandatory on campus and all swimmers and parent/guardians must wear a mask of face covering when arriving/departing the facility and while observing. 
  • Swimmers should remove masks while in the water.


  • Available in ‘U Lot’.

Pool Access

  • Swimmers will enter the Active Living Centre via the South facing door (you will see a cuing line here).
  • Guardians will be asked to check in at the Customer Service desk and provide proof of approved Covid-19 vaccine and identification.
  • All outdoor footwear must be removed at the Customer Service desk. Please feel free to bring indoor footwear with you for wearing while in the facility.

Parent/Guardian Accompaniment

  • Children 14 years of age and younger must be supervised while in the facility. 
  • We require that each household attend with only one parent/guardian as space for observing lessons is limited.

Change Room/Toileting & Locker Use

  • Swimmers and their guardian will be permitted to use the male/female and community change room spaces. 
  • The community change room is limited to 14 people at at time. Please use the larger male/ female change rooms when possible and maintain social distancing at all times.
  • Showers are available but limited to rising before and after pool use. 
  • Participants are encouraged to arrive at the pool in swim attire and bring as few personal belongings to the pool as possible. 
  • Showering (at home) before and after swimming is recommended.
  • Day use lockers are available.

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