Li Lin and Abi Liu know a thing or two about swimming; between the two of them, they have earned four Olympic medals, set several world and Chinese national records, and won awards for their coaching skills. Together, they oversee and train each of the coaches that become part of Saratoga Star Aquatics’ staff at the 12,500-square-foot indoor facility. Two swimming pools and a comprehensive training studio are climate controlled, so their students can take lessons and practice with the elite swim team year-round.
Santa Clara Swim Club was founded in 1951 by decorated swim coach George Haines, and its swimmers have been making headlines ever since. The club has produced 33 summer-games gold medals, and members run the spectrum from beginners learning the basics of swimming to competitive swim-team athletes working toward becoming real dolphins. With classes for children and adults, private swim lessons, and three heated outdoor pools, Santa Clara Swim Club is a popular place exercise or go for a dip.
First conceived nearly 50 years ago, the dream of the Oshman Family JCC officially came to fruition in 2009 as a sprawling, 8.5-acre campus that welcomes people of all backgrounds. The Richard & Rhoda Goldman Sports & Wellness Complex hosts more than 150 group fitness classes per week, complementing these sessions with basketball and volleyball games. A heated outdoor pool supplies six lanes for swimming laps and connects with a sun deck that's ideal for relaxing with a good book or identifying barbell-shaped cloud formations. But the center focuses on enriching people's lives through other means as well. It supports families via kid-friendly camps, activities, and early-childhood education programs. It also hosts cultural events in the Schultz Cultural Arts Hall, spotlighting the works of renowned artists, musicians, and authors.
A top-notch pool is essential to competitive swimmers' training needs. Fortunately for them, Calphin Aquatic Club was cofounded by Xiaohong Wang, who was named to the Chinese National Team at age 16 and eventually earned a silver medal at the 1992 Summer Games. Now a coach, she has a distinct understanding of why quality counts when it comes to swimming. To that end, the club's main Fremont location houses a small indoor pool heated to 88 degrees and a larger pool heated to 82 degrees. The other locations also offer heated pools, including the Olympic-sized outdoor one in Sunnyvale.
All of these watering holes are kept pristine for lessons and training sessions. Young children tackle the small pool in Learn to Swim or Aqua Baby classes that teach them how to float and communicate telepathically with marine life. Meanwhile, older kids and adults can go from swimming novice to competitive master during group or private sessions that focus on the basics or specific strokes. But recreational swimmers shouldn't intimidated by Calphin Aquatic Club's professional edge. The pools also offer fitness programs, including swimming for fitness, aerobic exercise, and low-impact workouts for people with arthritis.
The certified instructors from American Swim Academy recognize that, unlike many other mammals, humans aren't born with the ability to swim safely. Their passion for teaching students how to glide through the water without worry propels each class at the academy and inspires students of all ages to silence the mocking comments from their neighbor's dolphin. Each instructor must have obtained both CPR and academy swim training before leading lessons, which are structured to meet students' abilities.
Furthering the tenants of safety and control, all academy classes are hosted inside an indoor facility with pools designed specifically for instruction. Waters are heated to 92 degrees and feature wide steps, teaching stations, and shallow areas for small children. On-deck managers oversee each class to heighten student safety and shout out Olympic swimming records every five minutes for inspiration.
Jeff Smith, a college swim coach and swim-club aquatics director, and Joan Smith, an NCAA all-American swimmer and triathlete, joined forces to open a swim academy that teaches youngsters how to swim safely while having fun. The pair operates two facilities, each with its own heated pool staffed by instructors who have all graduated from King's Swim Academy's training program. Their program begins with Parent and Me classes for kids as young as 6 months old, which introduce children to the water and teach basic skills such as kicking and changing their own diaper underwater. As students progress through the levels, they eventually learn skills such as freestyle swimming, backstroke, flip turns, and survival swimming. Instructors also lead a swim-technique and fitness class that prepares swimmers for swim team while promoting a healthy lifestyle and honing stroke skills.