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This article was published 4/3/2020 (326 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
Winnipeg will soon be home to a new heated indoor swimming pool, thanks to a pair of aquatic entrepreneurs who plan on taking their private swim-instruction business to new depths.
The H2O Academy teaching pool will be built at McCreary Business Park in the southwest corner of the city, in part of the 5,000 sq.-ft. facility formerly occupied by the recently closed Sky Zone indoor trampoline park.
H2O Academy co-founders Kaley Maksymyk and Krista Morden say swimming is a critical skill, but it’s hard to find spots for lessons in Winnipeg. The business owners met almost two decades ago as competitive high-performance synchronized swimmers, and later served as swim coaches for the 2011 Canada Games team.
"We realized, with being at the pool a lot, that a lot of athletes and public swimmers lack efficiency and basic skills," said Maksymyk.
"And when we talked to our coaching colleagues in other sports like speed swimming, diving and water polo, they found the same thing. So we decided there’s an opportunity here for us to create our own curriculum."
H2O Academy’s proprietary swimming curriculum is meant "to keep swimming fun, and to keep kids enjoying the skill of swimming so that they stay in it long enough to learn that life skill," said Morden.
"And if they choose to go into sports, that’s great. If they choose to just be comfortable at the lake in the summer that’s good as well."
Swimming lessons at the new pool won’t only be for kids — Maksymyk said H2O Academy will be offering learn-to-swim lessons for everyone from four-month-old babies to adults. Other activities will include Aqua-Zumba exercise classes, introductory aquatic sport classes like synchronized swimming, and mermaid experiences.
"Our water will also be very warm and inviting," said Maksymyk. "We’re going to be keeping it at 90 degrees F (32 C), which a lot of people will like."
With the Bonivital public swimming pool closed for renovations and the possibility of other public pool closures as Winnipeg prepares its next budget, Morden said Winnipeggers are in need of new pool space and swim programming.
Construction of the new pool is being financed by the Business Development Bank of Canada. Maksymyk and Morden said they plan to have the pool ready for swimmers in September of this year, the fifth anniversary of their swim-instruction business.