Gerstacker Regional Aquatics Center

The premier aquatic center of the Great Lakes Bay Region is home to SVSU's Men and Women's Swimming & Diving programs.  The Olympic-size pool is also host to many high school and collegiate swim and diving competitions. This refreshing venue is open to SVSU students, faculty and staff as well as community members for leisurely swimming or vigorous laps.  The SVSU Aquatics program also offers senior aquacise classes and American Red Cross certified Learn to Swim programs.  

To reserve time at the pool select the link below. 

Learn to Swim Feature

Cardinal Aquatics Program

A variety of learn to swim courses are offered, serving all ages and levels.  All courses are taught by certified instructors and class participants have access to men's, women's and family locker-rooms, fully equipped with showers and other amenities.

Girl in Swim Classes

Course Fees

  • Lesson Fee: $65.00 
  • Late Registration Fee: $5.00 per child 
  • Semi-Private & Private Lessons - Times, dates, and fees to be set by the instructor.
  • For more information call (989) 964-7326.

Learn to Swim Course Descriptions

It gives young children a positive, developmentally appropriate learning experience that emphasizes water safety, survival and foundational swimming concepts. Skills are age-appropriate, helping participants achieve success on a regular basis while in a class environment with peers.

Helps participants feel comfortable in the water and enjoy water safety. Fundamental skills such as floating and basic locomotion are taught along with an introduction to water safety.  These classes are offered Fall and Winter only.


  • Hold breath/submerge head
  • Blow bubbles
  • Retrieve submerged object
  • Prone float/glide (supported)
  • Supine float/glide (supported)
  • Change directions
  • Rollover - front to back (supported
  • Rollover - back to front (supported)
  • Bobbing - 5 times
 
  • Alternating arm action on front and back
  • Simultaneous arm action on back
  • Alternating kick on front and back
  • Simultaneous leg action on back
  • Combined stroke - 5 yards ( front)
  • Combined stroke - 5 yards (back)
  • Wearing a life jacket
  • Reaching & extension assist from the deck
  • Know how to get help

  • Retrieve object - 3 feet (eyes open, unsupported)
  • Back float - 15 seconds (unsupported)
  • Front float - 10 seconds (unsupported)
  • Treading water - 15 seconds (unsupported)
  • Change direction (on front & back) 
  • Rollover - front to back (unsupported)
  • Rollover - back to front (unsupported)
  • Front glide with push-off independently 2 body lengths
 
  • Back glide with push-off independently 2 body lengths
  • Jump into shoulder-deep water
  • Simultaneous leg action on the side - 5 yards 
  • Combined stroke on the front - independently 5 body lengths
  • Combined stroke on the back - independently 5 body lengths
  • Various water safety topics

  • Jump into deep water
    from the side
  • Headfirst entry from sitting;
    kneeling position
  • Survival float in deep
    water - 30 seconds
  • Back float in deep water
    - 1 minute
  • Push off in streamline position,
    then begin flutter kick on front
 
  • Push off in streamline position, 
    then begin butterfly kick on front
  • Breaststroke kick - 15 yards
  • Front crawl - 15 yards
  • Elementary backstroke - 15 yards
  • Scissors kick - 15 yards
  • Tread water in deep water - 1 minute
  • Various water safety topics

  • Alternate breathing
  • Dive from the side
    (compact or stride position)
  • Survival swimming
    - 1 minute
  • Back float in deep water
    - 1 minute
  • Open turn on the front 
  • Open turn on the back 
  • Swimming underwater
    - 3 body lengths
  • Compact jump from 
    height with a life jacket
 
  • Tread water - 2 minutes 
    using 2 different kicks
  • Front crawl - 25 yards
  • Back crawl - 15 yards
  • Butterfly - 15 yards
  • Elementary backstroke - 25 yards
  • Breaststroke - 15 yards
  • Sidestroke - 15 yards
  • Feet-first surface dive
  • Throwing assist
  • Various safety topics

  • Front crawl – 50 yards
  • Breaststroke – 25 yards
  • Butterfly - 25 yards 
  • Front Flip turn
  • Pike surface dive
  • Treading water - 5 minutes
  • Treading water - 2 minutes with legs only
 
  • Backstroke - 25 yards
  • Sidestroke - 25 yards
  • Elementary backstroke – 50 yards
  • Back Flip turn
  • Tuck surface dive
  • Shallow-angle dive from the side
  • Various water safety topics

Prerequisites:

  • American Red Cross Learn-to-Swim Level 5: Fundamental Aquatic Skills certificate or demonstrate all completion requirements in Level 5. 

Participant Materials:

  • American Red Cross Swimming and Water Safety Manual (recommended but not required)

Purpose:

  • To refine strokes so students swim them with more ease, efficiency, power and smoothness over great distances.
  • To introduce and practice fundamental springboard diving skills.

Learning Objectives:

  • Increase endurance while performing the following strokes:
    • Front crawl - 100 yards
    • Back crawl - 50 yards
    • Butterfly - 50 yards
    • Elementary backstroke - 100 yards
    • Breaststroke - 50 yards
    • Sidestroke - 50 yards
    • Discuss basic stretching exercises for diving

 

  • Discuss basic stretching exercises for diving
  • Demonstrate a dive from a kneeling and standing position from the diving board.
  • One and two-part takeoff from deck and diving board
 
  • Demonstrate the following turns while swimming:
    • Front crawl open turn
    • Backstroke open turn
    • Sidestroke open turn
    • Front flip turn
    • Backflip turn
    • Butterfly Turn
    • Breaststroke Turn

 

  • Demonstrate a forward jump in tuck & pike position.
  • Demonstrate a forward dive in tuck & pike position.

Certificate Requirements Successfully complete the following exit skills assessment:

  1. Swim 500 yards continuously using any 3 strokes, swimming at least 50 yards of each stroke.
  2. Perform a two-part takeoff with a feetfirst entry from a 1-meter diving board.
  3. Perform a two-part takeoff with a headfirst entry from a 1-meter diving board.

Prerequisites:

  • American Red Cross Learn-to-Swim Level 5: Fundamental Aquatic Skills certificate or demonstrate all completion requirements in Level 5. 

Participant Materials:

  • American Red Cross Swimming and Water Safety Manual (recommended but not required)

Purpose:

  • To refine strokes so students swim them with more ease efficiency, power and smoothness over greater distances.
  • To teach students how to prevent aquatic emergencies in open water environments, and to introduce and practice self-rescue techniques.

Learning Objectives:

  • Increase endurance while performing the following strokes:
    • Front crawl - 100 yards
    • Back crawl - 100 yards
    • Butterfly - 50 yards
    • Elementary backstroke - 50 yards
    • Breaststroke - 50 yards
    • Sidestroke - 50 yards
    • Tread water with hands, in deep water (5 minutes)
    • Tread water, kicking only, in deep water (2 minutes)
 
  • Demonstrate the following turns while swimming:
    • Front crawl open turn
    • Backstroke open turn
    • Sidestroke open turn
    • Front flip turn
    • Backstroke flip
    • Butterfly turn
    • Breaststroke turn

 


  1. Demonstrate a feet-first surface dive and retrieve an object from a depth of 7 feet
  2. Demonstrate the H.E.L.P position - 2 minutes
  3. Demonstrate the huddle position - 2 minutes
  4. Demonstrate a survival float in deep water - 5 minutes
   
  1. Demonstrate a back float in deep water - 5 minutes
  2. Demonstrate survival swimming - 10 minutes
  3. Demonstrate self-self-rescue techniques while clothed
  4. Discuss basic safety rules for open water environment
  5. Discuss basic safety rules for boating

Certificate Requirements: (Must be able to perform the following exit skills)

   1. Swim 500 yards continuously using any 3 strokes, swimming at least 50 yards of each stroke.

   2. Jump into deep water, perform a survival float for 5 minutes, roll onto back and perform a back float for 5 minutes.

   3. Perform a feetfirst surface dive, retrieve an object from the bottom of the pool at a depth of 7 to 10 feet, return to the surface, then back to the starting point.

Certificate Issued and Validity Period: Learn-to-Swim Level 6: Personal Safety


Prerequisites:

  • American Red Cross Learn-to-Swim Level 5: Fundamental Aquatic Skills certificate or demonstrate all completion requirements in Level 5. 

Participant Materials:

  • American Red Cross Swimming and Water Safety Manual (recommended but not required)

Purpose:

  • To introduce and practice fundamental springboard diving skills.

Learning Objectives:

  • Increase endurance while performing the following strokes:
    • Front crawl -- 100 yards
    • Back crawl -- 100 yards
    • Butterfly -- 50 yards
    • Elementary backstroke -- 50 yards
    • Breaststroke -- 50 yards
    • Sidestroke -- 50 yards
 
  • Demonstrate the following turns while swimming
    • Front crawl open turn
    • Backstroke open turn
    • Sidestroke open turn
    • Front flip turn
    • Backstroke flip turn
    • Breaststroke Turn
    • Butterfly Turn
  1. Discuss basic stretching exercises for swimming
  2. Using a pull buoy while swimming
  3. Using fins while swimming
  4. Using a pace clock
  5. Using paddles while swimming
 
 
  1. Demonstrate etiquette in fitness swimming
  2. Describe the principles of setting up a fitness program
  3. Demonstrate various training techniques
  4. Calculate the target heart rate
  5. Apply the principles of water exercise.

Certificate Requirements:  (Must be able to perform the following exit skills)

  • Swim 500 yards continuously using any 3 strokes, swimming at least 50 yards of each stroke.
  • Perform the Cooper 12-minute swim test and compare it with pre-assessment results.

 Certificate Issued and Validity Period:  Learn-to-Swim Level 6 - Fitness Swimmer


CONTACT US.


Fitness Center/Service Desk
Fitness Center 105
rydercenter@svsu.edu
(989) 964-4906

Campus Recreation
Fitness Center 108
campusrec@svsu.edu
(989) 964-7321

Cardinal Aquatics Program
Ryder Center 105
rydercenter@svsu.edu
(989) 964-7326