Read what our clients are saying about us…
Making me feel proud of myself
I took swimming lessons over 30 years ago and I did not learn to swim. One of my colleagues referred me to Sea Hiker, as she learned to swim from them. So I decided to try and started in Swim Pod Level 1.
Coach Peter was very encouraging so I continued to Swim Pod Level 3 and took Swim Pod Level 3 a few times. I improved every time I joined the class. I have joined Skill Sessions as well. I’m quite impressed with the system of their training and their professionalism. I have improved my swimming with guided exercises provided from each course and most of all from the one on one video analysis, one on one feedback on the pool deck, and email feedback. There are also some video learning resources available.
I have improved my kicking because of swimming with fins, which has helped flex my ankles better. It feels good when I see my improvement on the videos throughout the course and when someone gives me compliments that I swim with nice form and that I am getting faster. I’m so grateful that I tried it for the second time and so proud of myself that at age 55, I can now swim with a 2 beat kick. I’ll continue to swim as I have noticed that my shoulders and knee joints are looser and feel better.
This year, 2016, will be my first lap swim at Kitsilano Pool and my first open water experience at Jericho Beach. It’s quite a challenge to learn to swim and there are times of frustration, especially with learning how to breathe, but I never give up until I got it right. Learning to swim is a HUGE accomplishment for me so many thanks to the Sea Hiker coaches: Stewart, Oscar and especially Peter who spent a lot of time with me.
Peter is an outstanding teacher and motivator. Sea Hiker combines unique in-class training techniques with suggested drills and personal feedback (face to face and video). These methods took my swimming to the next level very quickly. I am now swimming regularly and will be taking another class. I strongly recommend Sea Hiker to swimmers of all levels.
"I get more speed gains from Sea Hiker"
“The biggest reason I keep coming back is because I get more speed gains from Sea Hiker because of the one-on-one coaching and real time feedback on stroke mechanics and body positioning. I get workouts for my other swims from my Triathlon coach, but swimming is such a skill based and technical sport that I know I would be a much slower swimmer without Sea Hiker coaching.”
Best swim coaching I've had
The coaches are very supportive and relaxed. I found I looked forward to every session and always finished feeling positive. The coaches were close by, giving constant individual feedback. I will definitely continue working with Sea Hiker to improve my swimming. Thanks guys!
Helpful and Amazing
I took the beginner open water classes and my comfort level is much better compared to where it was at the end of May this year.
All of the instructors were beyond amazing, and I can't wait to come back and do it again next summer!
Committed Coaching and Personalized Feedback
I came to Sea Hiker having already taken lessons as a kid and even as an adult, so I could (maybe) swim to save my life, but it didn't feel good and was definitely not fun.
Sea Hiker has a totally different and much more committed approach to teaching than the others.
The 3 main differentiators were: the personalized videos with commentary, the website resources (full outline of weekly curriculum, detailed blog and video posts), and best of all, the 1 on 1 feedback you receive during class and via e-mail.
After taking the Sea Hiker course - and with dedicated practice - there is no possible excuse you can make anymore to not know how to swim. After that, it's just about gradual improvement.
It Came at the Perfect Time...
I took the Level 2 Swim Pod course with Coach Peter, and feel like it came at the perfect time for where I was at with my swimming, and that it's given me a ton of stuff to work on for months ahead. I really enjoyed Peter's way of teaching and how he encouraged us to explore things for ourselves, and how the swim pod worked: swimming in a group and learning together proved to be lots of fun 🙂
My swimming definitely feels better than it did before the course. For me it was the focus on body roll (both for swimming efficiency and to avoid shoulder pain) and breath timing that were most helpful. Also the opening of the chest (having both arms work together) was an eye-opener. Lots of things to improve and explore further for sure!
Looking forward to the next level!
Did it for me
Dear Sea Hiker team,
I cannot begin to tell you how much trying just the first of the drills presented on your website has done for me. I tried it this morning, doing 200m of StreamlineDrill, then 1200m of freestyle, followed by 200m of breast stroke and 200m of breast stroke legs only on my back. I did this combination three times in a row, and believe it or not, the third time I was done in SEVEN MINUTES LESS than the first time. I am positive not to have miscounted. I put this down to the StreamlineDrill having already rubbed off on my frestyle, and I am very much looking forward to doing the rest of your drills after the Streamline Drill and see what happens. For now, I am just immensely happy with how much more at ease I feel in the water, and would like to say a huge THANK YOU. I will definitely be back.
Best swim coaching I've had
I took both the indoor and open water swim lessons with Sea Hiker this year. While I can swim, I was looking for improvement and a bit more comfort in the water. Peter and Hannah are very supportive and relaxed. I found I looked forward to every session and always finished feeling positive. I love that, at the indoor sessions, the Sea Hiker coaches are happy to jump in the water to demonstrate. This added another dimension to coaching from the pool deck. In the open water, the coaches were close by, giving constant individual feedback. I will definitely continue working with Sea Hiker to improve my swimming. Thanks guys!
From Panic to Personal Best
A year ago after attempting an open water swim at a triathlon, I called Sea hiker on the advice of my friend. She assured me that Sea Hiker would be able to help me out after my most memorable panic attack in the swim the previous day. She could not have been more right. I am on my 5th class with Sea Hiker and I am so thankful for all the coaching and advice that has been offered. I have to admit that the swim is my favourite part of the race now and I prefer open water to the pool! I've even signed up for my first open water race. A year later, I returned to the same triathlon course and had great success in the swim and a personal best in my race.
You can't manage any of these challenges without confidence in the swim.
Sea Hiker offers great instruction for all levels. I routinely run into people who have taken a course and they always have great things to say about the coaches and programs. A definite must for anyone looking to gain confidence and new skills in the water.
Helpful and Amazing
I signed up for three courses this summer, took the beginner open water classes and then the triathlon class right after that. I still have panic attacks in the open water, they are fewer and further between and my comfort level is much better compared to where it was at the end of May this year.
All of the instructors were beyond amazing, and I can't wait to come back and do it again next summer!
You can teach an old dog how to swim.
I've been a non-swimmer my whole life, 40+ years. Not a bad swimmer - an I didn't even want to stick my face in the water non-swimmer. I started Level 1 with Seahiker this past November (8 months ago) - at that point, all I could really do was float. I couldn't swim a stroke. I've since completed 1 round of Level 1, 2 rounds of Level 2 and an Open Water Confidence course with Peter and Seahiker. At the beginning of every course I always feel like, "I'm never going to be able to (fill in the blank)" and by the end of the course, I'm doing it. Peter and his staff are great at tailoring each course to the individual and their needs so that no matter what your skill or confidence level, you finish the course having accomplished *your* goals. It's empowering. I really enjoy the structure of the course and the feedback I get, in person, and on video. Peter is really good at breaking a task down into tiny micro-steps so that it's not overwhelming and it's often that one tiny detail that makes a huge difference and helps you get to that "a-ha" moment. And the video feedback is not only invaluable but I love going back and seeing that 1st video, 8 months ago and compare it to now. I can't say enough good things about Peter and Sea Hiker. Regardless of what skill level you are at with swimming – whether you are a non-swimmer wanting to learn or can swim but want to improve your technique, Sea Hiker is who you should call. Worth every penny.
A great course to improve confidence during the swim portion of a triathlon!!
I signed up for the open water swimming lessons because I enjoy competing in triathlons; however, I had always struggled in the swim portion and would frequently have panic attacks.
Throughout the course I became more comfortable swimming in open water and surrounded by other people. I found it especially helpful when we practiced getting splashed and bumped around by other people, as this was my biggest fear in triathlons.
At the end of the course when I did the swim portion of my triathlon I was really impressed with how comfortable I felt in the water - I actually had fun! I was surprised that it no longer bothered me when people bumped into me.
Along with gaining confidence in the water, I also got great feedback on my swimming (the videos were especially helpful) and learned a lot of new skills to practice.
The best sports coach I have ever had the honour of being taught by....
When I first enrolled with sea hiker, I could not front crawl at all. I had originally wanted to register for level 1 new swimmers but the course was full. I ended up taking 3 private lessons with Peter. After 3 classes, I was able to swim 25 metres and enrolled in easy lap level 2.
After Easy Laps, I was able to swim laps. I never thought I would be able to swim laps in such a short period of time!! Seeing my progress has made me enjoy swimming a lot. I recently registered for the next level which is level 3 efficiency. Peter is a fantastic coach. He comes with the highest professionalism. He pays attention to each of his student and provides excellent and accurate feedback. He also takes videos of students swimming and email it back to them with tips for improvement. He provides "homework" to his students on drills they can work on between classes.
I have had experience working with various sports trainers in the past and I would say Peter is by far the best I have encountered. He comes with my highest recommendation and I have and will continue to recommend him to anyone who wants to learn how to swim. Thanks Peter for being a great coach and making swimming so enjoyable
I was amazed at the number of laps I had swam...
Thanks Peter for all the great specific swim tips. I just learned to swim front crawl two years ago. I am over 45 years old! I am so pleased to be able to swim after spending a lifetime of thinking it is something I could NOT do. It is a very efficient and relaxing workout and I love to go snorkelling with my family when we are on vacation. When I took the trial class it was obvious I was a much weaker swimmer than the other students but Peter let me to register for the class.
The first class I worked really hard to try keep up but Peter was so encouraging reminding me to focus on technique and not worry about speed. At the end of each class, I was amazed at the number of laps I had swam and I felt so invigorated! Peter was great giving very specific instruction, i.e., wider arms. The videos were helpful feedback. Peter also followed up classes with emails that gave me swim tips to practice. The confidence and enjoyment of swimming that I gained from this class motivates me to swim even more. Will definitely try to take another class!
I can swim laps like a "real" swimmer...
I want to say thanks to you for the course. I have thoroughly enjoyed it and I have found it to be really effective. I now feel like I can swim laps (like a "real" swimmer, even if a slow one!) I am definitely going to keep swimming and working on my technique. Once I get a bit better I may even sign up for Level 3. I've recommended your course to friends and will continue to do so.
- Angela Juba, Vancouver, BC
I am definitely a better swimmer now...
The Sea Hiker 7-week Swim Pod on Tuesday mornings at the Kerrisdale Pool was my first experience being coached in swimming and swimming with a group. The experience and expertise of each of the participants in our group was varied, with myself being the novice in both departments 🙂 Our coach, Stewart, planned and managed our practise sessions so that each of us, regardless of our skill level, were challenged. Stewart's use of verbal instruction, in pool demonstrations, as well as individual video feedback was so helpful in understanding how to perform and correct our swimming strokes.
Each week we focused on one aspect of our swimming. We were shown proper form, taught drills that would help us with correct execution and then given a workout plan which incorporated the skill and drills we worked on that week. Each of us had a feedback that contained our video clips, benchmark results and coaching comments. I found this to be a very comprehensive approach to coaching and it helped keep me focused on our Tuesday group swims and during my solo swim workouts for the rest of the week.
As we progressed through the 7 week course, I could feel my confidence building as my swimming skills improved. I am definitely a better swimmer now then I was 7 weeks ago. I still have a long way to go, but I am better equipped to make the progress I want because I took part in the Sea Hiker swim course.
Stewart gave us clear instruction combined with positive encouragement. A great motivating coaching combination.
- Debbie Suzuki, Vancouver, BC
I'll be spreading the word...
Prior to taking the class, I was both unsure of where to start and very intimidated by the other lane swimmers. I am far more comfortable in the water now and have been working on swimming more frequently as a workout. I'm still working towards exhaling more efficiently and using less effort when kicking.
Peter simplified the steps and encouraged learning and practicing at your own pace. This really helped me to enjoy being in the water. It's just the beginning for me and I'm looking forward to water sports and activities that I never thought I could before.
I’m actually headed on holidays to Miami tonight and hope to use some of my new water confidence when snorkeling.
I will be spreading the word as I have a few friends who can’t swim either.
Thank you so much! Hope to see you around when I return from my trip,
- Katrina Shearon, Vancouver, BC
My friends were completely amazed...
Off to Bali!
I can breathe, now.
Thanks for all the great lessons so far (Level one @ the Y) - tonight I was able to take breaths and it was AMAZING!! Still only on one side but I was so surprised I could do it at all so easily, after struggling for years.
Have a great weekend, and see you on Tuesday!
- Cecilia Greyson, Vancouver, BC
10 Lengths - Surprise!
I just wanted to share that I unexpectedly did 10 lengths (freestyle no fins) in the Y pool on Friday - wasn't even sure if I'd be comfortable doing one, so 10 was a real surprise! (broke it up into 50 m at a time - rested for 10 sec at the 25m, then took a few minutes before next group).
Also did 4 lengths backstroke and 8 lengths of wonky breaststroke.
So, big thanks for such a great course! Haven't swum this much since...well, since Brian Mulroney was Prime Minister.
- Cecilia Greyson, Vancouver, BC (now living in Halifax)
I have a few courses before and I think that the open water at Jericho was by far the most useful. Both coaches were great instructors. The courses were nicely structured to allow for increasing skill and fitness levels. Highly recommended!
I have taken so far the "Easy Laps" and "Open Water Confidence". Definitely Peter, Stewart and Jen know what they are doing.
My swimming improved so much since these classes and I really enjoyed their approach.
Thanks to the Sea Hiker team.
I had been trying to improve my swimming for a while before taking a private lesson with Peter. He showed me a fair bit, and this motivated me to register for the Open Water swimming course this past summer. Swimming in the open water was something that both frightened and fascinated me. It ended up being a great course, and it took my swimming to the next level. I just swam 1000M straight at Kits pool, which was my arbitrary target for now. Honestly I felt like I could've gone another 1000M, it was an amazing feeling. Thanks to Sea Hiker team.
Sea Hiker is skillful, compassionate, and overall awesome!
There is no way I could possibly have signed up for a triathlon involving ocean swimming, however short a distance, before taking Sea Hiker's Open Water Confidence course. Now that I've completed it, I'm looking forward to the Stanley Park Tri at Second Beach.
A few months ago, in the first few sessions of the course, whenever the class swam more than 25 m or so from shore, I just sat watching from the beach. But by end of the 9 weeks I was with them swimming out to the buoys at Jericho Beach, and feeling comfortable doing so. Jen and Stewart and Peter are all awesome in terms of teaching skills as well as having empathy for wherever students happen to be in their exploration of swimming. (I also took a basic Efficiency course from Peter last fall, and learned a tremendous amount.)
I thank Jen and Stewart and Peter, and the whole Sea Hiker team, and would recommend their courses to anyone.
You changed my perception about adult swimming course
I learned most of swimming from self-coaching, in the past 2 years my 100m pace could not go any faster. After 2 weeks with Sea Hiker coach Stewart, I am very surprised that with a bit streamlining and stroke improvement I can improve 5 - 10 sec in the 100m pace with much ease.
The course is conducted in a manner of technical with a flavor of fun and good team spirit. For people who are looking for coaches who know how to teach adult swimming, I certainly recommend Sea Hiker!
I was frustrated with injuries
For months, I was frustrated with repeated shoulder and neck injuries and tension from swimming.
I wanted to correct problems with my stroke so I could swim with confidence but didn’t know where or how to start. In the Sea Hiker freestyle clinic, Peter identified and corrected my stroke mechanics and body rotation that were aggravating or causing problems and in doing so, improved my swimming efficiency.
The coaching, drills, and post-clinic, individualised stroke analysis gave me a better understanding of how to properly use my body to move through the water.
A week after the clinic, I was starting to swim with more ease and now feel great after every workout.
Thanks Sea Hiker for a swimming breakthrough!
I finished the half Ironman
Just wanted to say thank you so much for a fantastic class and for getting me to the finish line! I almost didn't make the swim, wow wetsuits are a lot harder to swim in than I had anticipated, but I did, and I couldn't have done it without your help. So thanks again for helping me finish the half ironman!
I really appreciate the individual attention
Thanks for the videos practice guide etc. I found the Freestyle Clinic very useful and really appreciate the individual attention. I learned more about Tri specific technique and open water skills than in the 3 master's swim programs I've taken for sure.
I wish I'd done it sooner
I am really happy I took your class as I feel much more confident in both my ability to swim and to recognize what still needs improvement. It really is a case of just wishing I'd done it all sooner. I've been swimming two or three times a week and trying to implement all the techniques you taught us; your email serves as a useful checklist of things I can specifically target in my own stroke...thanks!
I had my best race ever
I had my best race ever in Kelowna. I swam the fastest 1500m swim I've ever done in 31:30. Five minutes faster than last time! I actually stayed on course for once. I couldn't believe it when I got to my bike and the bikes were still mostly there! Thanks for the training sessions, they really paid off. We've been singing your praises to other athletes.
I learned more in the first half hour
Sea Hiker is fantastic. I learned more in the first half hour with Peter than I did in months of trying to learn on my own. Within a very short time, I've been able to feel my stroke becoming smoother, easier and much more enjoyable.
It has everything do to with your coaching
Just a quick note to let you know I had an outstanding swim today. I swam a mile and it felt so good -- my stroke felt strong and smooth and such a difference from previous years. It has everything to do with your coaching and support in my technique improvement. I'm really grateful. It's going to be a wonderful summer of swimming.
I did the Half Ironman on Sunday and finished the 2km swim in 39 minutes....so huge improvement on the 56 minutes for 1500m last year! Still left a lot out there.... so I reckon I could definitely shave some time off.
Thank you for helping me
Thank you for helping me achieve my first half ironman. Being my first ever swim in Oliver, my 47 minute swim (2km) was a great success for me.
I could not swim 25 metres and now I've qualified for Kona
It has been a remarkable year and I would not have been able to do any of it without your help! When I started your freestyle class in March 2009 (only 18 months ago), I could not swim 25 metres! I managed a pretty decent swim at Ironman Canada in August, finishing 10th in my age group, in 1 hour and 10 minutes, which qualified me for the World Championship in Kona, Hawaii. Pretty crazy, huh?
Sea Hiker taught me how to enjoy swimming
At the start of my adventure to Ironman I could not float, stroke or complete a 50 meter lap and forget about this infamous catch the swim books talk about. By November 2010, I completed my Ironman Florida swim of 3.8 km in 1 hour and 25 minutes. Sea Hiker not only taught me how to swim but how to enjoy doing it and that is more valuable than anything.
Thank you for helping me achieve my aquatic ambition!
Back in 2009, just after learning to swim with Sea Hiker and completing my first open water race, I asked Peter what he thought about me doing the Bay Challenge 10km swim the following year. I was expecting a look that said "are you crazy?!" but he thought it was an awesome idea and offered to help me prepare. With training plans focusing on improving technique and speed, and the odd lesson to check in on progress, the date quickly rolled around.
...The crossing itself was a bit of a blur, lots of bluey-green, greeny-blue, the odd tanker and occasional peek towards Kits Bach. After 4 hours and 14 minutes I arrived to cheers and hugs from friends, other swimmers and the vowsa crew. A HUGE thank you to Peter for being so enthusiastic, positive and for helping me achieve my aquatic ambition!
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