The World's Largest Swimming Lesson


Frequently Asked Questions About
The World's Largest Swimming Lesson™

What is it?

The World's Largest Swimming Lesson™ is a promotional event designed to build awareness and generate local and national press attention about the vital importance of teaching kids to swim to help prevent drowning.

What are we trying to accomplish?

Drowning is the second leading cause of accidental death of children ages 1-14.
The World's Largest Swimming Lesson™ is designed to provide local waterparks, community pools and other aquatic facilities with an event that draws attention to this issue, encourages participation in swimming lesson programs and helps spread the word that Swimming Lessons Save Lives.™

Who is putting this program together?

WLSL is being presented by the WWA with support from American Red Cross (ARC), Amusement Today, Aquatics International, Attractions Management, Instituto de Natacao Infantil (INATI), The Josh Project, National Drowning Prevention Alliance (NDPA), National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA), Pool Safely, Safe Kids Worldwide, Safer 3 Water Safety, Starfish Aquatics Institute, STA, Swim Australia, USA Swimming Foundation, United States Swim School Association, Water Safety Products, Abbey’s Hope, The Association of Pool & Spa Professionals, Australasian Leisure Management, C.L.A.Y. Foundation, blooloop, Colin’s Hope, Jeff Ellis & Associates, InterPark, Lifeguards Without Borders, National Aquatic Safety Company (NASCO), Park World, The Zac Foundation, and the World Waterpark Association (WWA).

What's the schedule for the event?

All lessons being conducted as part of The World’s Largest Swimming Lesson™ must take place on Friday, June 24, 2016. You choose your start time. Host facilities can register participants well in advance of the event, but also need to allow for time the morning of WLSL to have everyone participating in the event sign their WLSL logbook sheet.

How can I participate?

You can get involved with WLSL as a host location or as an individual participant in the lesson. To host a lesson at your facility, just complete the online registration or search the Host Location list to find a local WLSL site where you can participate in the lesson or volunteer to help. The list of Host Locations will be posted beginning March 15th. Updates and additions will be made through the close of registration on June 6th.

How many facilities will be teaching on the day of the event?

More than 480 locations conducted lessons in 2015! The more facilities that participate, the bigger the news story! So, help spread the word! The total number of Host Locations for the 2016 WLSL event won't be available until after August 1, 2016.

We want to host a lesson at our facility - what do we do?

Facilities interested in being a Host Location for the WLSL should complete the online registration here at Registraton opens February 28, 2016.

Once we've received your registration information and release form, you'll have access online to a WLSL Host Location Kit including: the curriculum for the lesson, promotional and press materials to help you drive participation for your event.

The deadline to register as a Host Location is June 6th.

Is there a fee to participate?

Yes there is a fee. Registration Fee for 2016 is $59.00. We do have multiple location group discounts for related facilities within the same city limits.

How will people know that our facility is participating?

Once your Host Location registration is approved, your facility will be added to the searchable list of WLSL Host Locations here on the website.

How many instructors do we need to teach our local WLSL Lesson?

The number of instructors needed will depend on how many participants you have. The one main Instructor teaching the lesson at your facility must be certified by a recognized swimming instructor training program.Other lifeguards assisting do not need to be certified.

Do we need to teach a specific curriculum?

Yes. All Aquatic facilities participating in the WLSL need to teach the same 30-minute lesson. The curriculum is an easy, beginner lesson plan to allow for the broadest participation possible.

How do we qualify as part of the WLSL world record?

Participating Host Location facilities will be responsible for counting, recording and submitting the total number of lesson participants as outlined in the WLSL Host Location Kit to qualify for the record. Each Host facility must have a minimum of 5 participants to qualify. A sample WLSL participant logbook sheet and detailed qualification requirements will be provided to all Host Locations in the WLSL Host Location Kit.

How do we get people to participate in our event?

All Host Locations will have access to an electronic WLSL Host Location Kit that includes promotion and press materials to help get the word out about their local event, including:

  • Customizable Posters
  • Customizable Ads
  • Web Banners
  • Email Blast template
  • Press Release template
  • And more

What can we do to help build awareness about the event and the cause?

Promote, Promote, Promote!
Here's a sample of the ideas you'll find in the WLSL Host Location Kit

  • Put up Posters at your facility and on community bulletin boards at grocery stores, libraries and coffee shops
  • Link your website to
  • Become a fan of the WLSL on Facebook
  • Get all your FB friends to become WLSL fans
  • Tweet about it. Follow WLSL on Twitter.
  • Personalize and distribute press releases to your local media
  • Send out emails to your member lists
  • Connect with other aquatic facilities in your local market and work together to build awareness and generate media exposure
  • Personalize your local event with fun add-ons like back float competitions, lifeguard training demonstrations or summer safety tips.

WLSL 2016 FAQ’s

How many people do we need to have in the lesson?

There must be a minimum of 5 participants per location. To be included, all participants, including instructors and participating lifeguards and staff in the water, must sign the official log sheet on the day of the event. The instructor(s) and the pupils taught must remain the same throughout the lesson. If one drops out, they cannot be counted in the total.

Do we need to have a certain number of instructors?

The number of instructors depends on the number of participants. All participants must be taught the same topics simultaneously. Locations can chose to have either one solo instructor or a team of instructors leading different groups of people at the same time. The main instructor must be certified by a recognized swimming instructor training program.

Do instructors count for our total number of participants?

Yes. Instructors and participating lifeguards and helpers in the water may be included in the participant count. However, they must sign the official log sheet to be counted. Instructors cannot serve as witnesses for the lesson.

How long does the lesson last?

The lesson runs 30 minutes from start to finish.

Where can we hold our event?

The attempt must take place in a restricted area. You may certainly do this event in an open body of water but the area must be restricted. This means there must be an area adjacent to where the participants enter the water that is restricted so you can get an accurate count. This can be as simple as putting up caution tape or rope. The organizers in an open body of water attempt must ensure that everyone is counted before they enter the water.

Stay Connected