Novice swimming at De Anza College, KNES1A (formerly P.E. 26A), has many different kinds of swim students.
Some are new to swimming, including some who have never been in a pool.
(Most colleges do not offer a true entry level swimming class; you are expected to already have some swimming skill. If you are afraid of the water, this is the right class.)
Some students in this class will be over their fear and able to swim some, but not quite ready for a beginning swim class in water deeper than they are tall.
Others are self taught, or have not swum for quite awhile and want to relearn from scratch.
Others know breaststroke, but not freestyle.
When I do surveys of students I find many who had some kind of swim class previously, but who just didn’t learn to swim. Others are in a pool or swim class for the first time. I teach from the very beginning. I don’t assume anyone knows how to float, or even how to get into a pool. I do assume many students will be uncomfortable at first.
The teaching assistants and I teach from in the pool, not up on the deck.
This class is not just for students in their late teens or early twenties. It includes people who come to De Anza College just to learn to swim, who are in their late twenties through thirties or forties and occasionally much older students.
Novice swimming is offered on Saturdays, fall, spring and summer quarters.
If you read about it too late to add, please at least be enrolled at De Anza before the first class.
Enrollment and registration steps for De Anza College are at: http://www.deanza.edu/admissions/
We will be in the water the first day of class, so bring your swimsuit, sunscreen, towel, snacks, (optional) swim cap, etc.
Information about KNES1A, the novice (before beginning swimming, even with a fear of water or for people who can swim but just are not fully comfortable/skilled in deep water) swim class at De Anza College, is at
The page includes how to find the De Anza swimming pools (this class meets at the
shallow end of the pool (EPOOL), how to find P E 12U when we use it as a classroom,
how to get a locker and more.
If you are a good swimmer you do not need to take novice swim as a "prerequisite" for beginning swim, (unless you want to re-learn to swim) so take a look at http://marydonahue.org/knes-001b
If you think you can’t learn to swim, read Letters from novice students
with advice from former novice swim students to tell you that you really can learn to swim, even if you are afraid to get in the pool.
“Have you ever been so fearful in a swimming pool that you cannot leave the corner of the pool where you can safely touch the bottom? Are you so terrified to put your face underwater for fear that you won’t be able to breathe, maybe even drown? Even more terrifying is the thought of letting your body float; feet off the bottom of the pool, hands not holding on to the side of the pool for security? These are only some of the reasons why you tell yourself you can’t swim or unwilling to learn to swim. Take two deep breaths and muster up the courage to sign up for a novice swimming class at De Anza College, but just not any novice swim class. Be sure your instructor is Mary Donahue. . .”
You do not need to buy a textbook for any class I teach. We will talk about it in class the first day of class.
If you are not sure whether this is the right class for you, read a description of typical students and goals of the class at: Novice swimming