Our vision is to enable kids with neurological or developmental disabilities to enjoy the water.
Our mission is to teach kids and youth with neurological or developmental disabilities to swim confidently, play safely and exercise comfortably in the water.
At Just Keep Swimming, participants have the opportunity to swim with instructors and aides with specific training and experience in neurological and developmental disabilities. This facilitates a more structured response to behavioural outbursts or distractions. All instructors come from a swimming background from introductory competitive, national level and Olympic experience. All of our instructors have a desire and passion to help participants with disabilities succeed in and out of the water.
During lessons, participants have personalized attention with an instructor to child ratio of 1:1 or 1:2. This allows every swimmer to progress individually but also encourages socialization with peers during games or group skills. Our lessons are about celebrating each child’s unique abilities while boosting their confidence and self-esteem so they look forward to swimming time, enjoy the learning process and are proud of their accomplishments.
Erin studied Kinesiology at the University of Calgary and earned a degree in Leadership, Pedagogy and Coaching. She was a competitive swimmer for nineteen years and swam on the University of Calgary Dinos team while pursuing her degree. Her passion for working with children and helping them succeed through physical activity, combined with years of competitive swimming experience inspired her to start coaching swimming. Over her eight years as a swim coach, she has helped recreational level and nationally-ranked swimmers excel both in and out of the pool.
During her third year of university, she met a physiotherapist named Michelle Kelly through an Adaptive Physical Activity course. Michelle Kelly Physiotherapy offers a variety of Bridge to Sport programs for children with neurological and developmental disabilities, including gross motor, strength in sport, and fitness in sport or gym settings. Erin volunteered in Michelle’s gym gross motor groups as well as her therapeutic swim program. This program helped Erin to realize the incredible benefits swimming could offer children with neurological and developmental delays. This was the catalyst for Just Keep Swimming, a swim program designed to address these needs that was started in September 2014 to an overwhelming reception.
Erin grew up with a sister with a cognitive auditory processing disorder which taught her to respect that we all learn in different ways. It was easy to see the difference in the way she learned and her level of enjoyment when she had an understanding teacher, instructor or even a parent. She thrives – given the right opportunity with the right teacher.
There are many benefits of participating in Just Keep Swimming, from the small-personalized classes to the expertise of the instructors. Perhaps the most beneficial aspect, however, is the learning and confidence that results from a child acquiring the skills to swim and play safely in the water. The love and passion our instructors have for these children can be seen at every session and we truly believe this program helps the kids do more than just learn to swim. It gives them a chance to have an equal opportunity for participation in an activity that is crucial to their childhood and adolescence. Just Keep Swimming allows children and youth with neurological or developmental disabilities the opportunity to learn to swim confidently, play safely and Just Keep Swimming.