Helena YMCA
For Youth Development, For Healthy Living, For Social Responsibility
Every day is full of potential
Line Break



Lessons for Life


Whether it's learning how to swim or splashing about with your family, the YMCA has been involved in Aquatics since the late 1800's. The YMCA created formalized swim lessons and gave birth to what we now call Swim Teams. The Y was instrumental in developing the first lifeguard certification training and remains today the largest provider of certifications in the country.


Various times are set aside for recreational swim. Children under the age of 7 and those who cannot stand in the shallow end or pass the deep water test must have supervision by an "in-water" adult at least 18 years of age.

Exercise Programs

Lap swim times are available throughout the day for those whose favorite form of exercise happens in the pool.  Anybody with the ability to swim the length of the pool is welcome to utilize the lap swim times.  We also offer aqua aerobics exercise classes at various levels of intensity along with aqua sculpt and water jog (check fitness and pool schedules for current times).


Next Class Fall 2017



swim adult lesson


Designed for the older swimmer (15 years & up), these swim lessons cover basic strokes - freestyle, backstroke, elementary backstroke, and breaststroke - for beginner and intermediate swimmers.  They will also teach treading water and basic water safety techniques.  Swimming is a life-long skill and at the YMCA we want everyone to feel safe and comfortable in the water!



The New Year's Eve Ed Kellner Mile Swim will be held Saturday, December 30, 2017

Cost:  $25 per person or team.

Time:  swim times begin at 5:30 AM.  Choose your swim time when registering.  (available spots will show when you click the "register online" button)

Teams:  break up the swim by having your friends join in the fun.  You can list your team-mates during the registration process.

Mile Fly Club:  If a mile swim isn't challenging enough, then you can really push your body to the limit by swimming a mile butterfly style.  The cost is $100.00 and you will get serious bragging rights and your name engraved on the coveted "Mile Fly Club" plaque.


This year's event will be a combined event with the entire Helena swimming community!  Please join us New Year's Eve for a day of camaraderie, epic swimming, and fun.  The first heats on New Year's Eve will begin at 5:30 AM and the last heats will finish at 12:15 PM.

Swimmers Finished 2016 by Swimming a Mile

Thirty-six swimmers completed their year by swimming in the Ed Kellner New Year's Eve Mile Swim (1,800 yard swim) at the Helena YMCA on December 31, 2016.  The YMCA Mile Swim is held in honor of Ed Kellner who inspired others to swim by mapping his miles swam along several U.S. waterways, including all 2,341 miles of the Missouri river.

All proceeds from the event are donated to the Helena Family YMCA Aquatics Department.

2016 top finisher was Stacey Schwarz with a time of 24:20, finishing second was Jacob Fleury with 24:38, and Stephen Murphy rounded out the top three with a time of 24:46.  Amanda McGowan (33.56), Peggy Stringer (41:21), and Bill Allen (41.58) swam the FLY for the entire 1,800 yards - not an easy feat! The relay team of Jason Fowler, Jacob Malaski, and John Melcher also completed the mile FLY with a YMCA record-breaking time of 25:18.  All of these swimmers are recognized as elite members of the Helena YMCA Mile Fly Club.  Congratulations to all participants.

Full results:

Individual mile swim results: Stacey Schwarz (24:20); Jacob Fleury (24:38); Stephen Murphy (24:46); Amanda McGowan (25:31); Adrienne Standley (28:45); Tim Mehrens (30:27); Robert Rasmussen (30:29); Jacob Gluekert (30:54); Monica Gluekert (31:03); Shawn Pennartz (31:58); Danielle Malaski (32:31); Josh Pallister (34:30); Bryan Flynn (37:02); David Anderson (41:41); Bob Stringer (42:16); Maggie Long (48:46); Patrick Edgar (52:08); Charlotte Sanddal (1.13:37).

Relay mile swim results: Spencer Bartow, Nick Bubb, Paul Field, Parker Keller, Anna Kerins, Jacob Malaski, and Regan Read (24:00); Peggy Stringer, Stacey Schwarz, and Fran Reale (24:09); Kyle Beauchan and Shannon Edgar (26:00); Teagan Boysen, Emily McAnally, and Madison Hasslet (28:17); Dave and Sam Burleigh (31:42); Beau and Charles Snellman (38:07).

Individual mile FLY results: Amanda McGowan (33.56); Peggy Stringer (41:21); Bill Allen (41:58)

Relay mile FLY results: Jason Fowler, Jacob Malaski, John Melcher (25:18)


Previous Years' Full results:

Find Out More →


IMG_2533At the Y, we know kids need lots of practice in the water to become proficient swimmers.  That’s why we offer swim lessons year-round.  



Call 442-9622 or click here for exact times.  You can also click the "register online" button to view detailed information on days and times of lessons available.

Helpful Information...

1.  Please bring your child to class on the first day with a suit, goggles, a towel and any supplies to shower with before and after pool use. Long hair needs to be put up or tied back. No lifejackets are needed. Parents will not be in the water unless you have signed up for the Aquatot level.

2. Class ratios of kids to instructors will be kept relatively low at 4:1 for ages 3-5, 5:1 for ages 6-8 and 6:1 for ages 9+. This enables proper amount of one on one work versus group activity.

3.  Remember, it is perfectly normal for a child to repeat a level 2 or 3 or even up to 4+ times.  The YMCA recognizes that children learn at their own rate and we keep this in mind for all levels. If specialty training is needed, private swim lessons are available.

4.  On the last day of class the instructor will give a progress report with their child’s progress and which level to sign them up for in the future. If you have any specific questions please ask the instructor during their free time, or contact Dawn Edgar at [email protected]

Find Out More →


swim teamreg_online_purple



Junior Swim Team is a program designed for youth who already know how to swim and are seeking new challenges in the water, but who cannot commit to a full swim season.  This program gives young swimmers the opportunity to participate on a team without leaving town.  The emphasis will be on stroke development, refining swimming techniques, and preparing swimmers for a lifetime of active water enjoyment.

Ages:  7-17 years, must be able to swim the entire length of the pool without assistance

Cost:  $60 members/$120 non-members

Spring 2017 Session: April 18 - June 8: Tuesday & Thursday: 3:30-4:30 PM OR 7:00-8:00 PM

Two inter-squad practices (Friday, April 28, Friday, May 26 - 5:30-7:30pm) and Two inter-squad meets (Friday, May 12 - 5:30-7:30pm, Thursday, June 8 - 7:00-8:30pm).

Summer 2017 Session: June 12 - August 3: Monday & Wednesday: 4:00-5:00 PM OR Tuesday & Thursday: 4:00-5:00 PM

For Additional information contact Dawn Edgar at [email protected]


Aquaerobics - Monday thru Friday 9:00 AM -10:00 AM and Mon/Wed/Fri 1:00-2:00 PM

Water Sculpt - Tuesday & Thursday 1:00-2:00 PM

Master's Swim - Tuesday and Thursday 12:00 PM –1:00 PM

Water Polo - Fridays 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM

See pool schedule for lap swim and recreational swim times


Participants must be at least 15 years old and able to pass a 300 Yard swim test.  (Participants must be able to demonstrate rotary breathing during the swim.  The distance may be swum in any combination of freestyle or breast stroke.)



Next Classes:

Re-certification course:  (dates TBA)

Standard Red Cross Lifeguard course:  Summer 2017

June 26-June 30: 5pm-10pm; and July 1: 10am-2pm

It is mandatory that all class sessions must be attended, no exceptions!   Registration opens April 15, 2017.

Fee:  $150 per person

Courses are limited to 10 participants.  A non-refundable deposit 0f $50 plus the class fee of $100 is required at time of registration.  Spots are given on a first come first serve basis.

This course is a blended learning course.  Participants will be expected to complete coursework online before coming to the onsite review and skill sessions.  Participants must attend all class sessions.  No exceptions.


Operating Hours

Mon-Fri: 5:30 AM-10 PM
Saturday: 8 AM-5 PM
Sunday: 11 AM - 5 PM

Holiday Schedule

Drop-In Day Care Hours

Mon-Fri: 8:30 AM-1:15 PM & 5-7 PM
Ages 3 months to 8 years

Helena Family YMCA

1200 North Last Chance Gulch
Helena MT 59601
Phone: (406) 442-9622
Fax: (406) 442-2577