Richmond Hill Swim Club Instructor
Richmond Hill GA LIVE interviewed Mckenzie Pickett, a 26 year-old swim instructor for Richmond Hill Swim Club. Mckenzie grew up in Pembroke and attended Bryan County High. After graduating high school in 2004, she attended Armstrong Atlantic State University where she earned a degree in Health and PE. Currently, Mckenzie lives in Richmond Hill and works as an instructor of Health and PE at Armstrong.
McKenzie is a Certified Water Safety Instructor and also CPR and first aid certified. She began teaching swim lessons after taking an aquatics class at Armstrong. â€śMy instructor had been organizing a minority swim program for the city of Savannah for years; he needed a swim instructor for the upcoming summer and knew I was passionate about kids learning to swim so he hired me,â€ť says Mckenzie. â€śThis experience lead me to obtaining a job at Richmond Hill Swim Club,â€ť she adds.
Mckenzie continues to teach swimming lessons because of her love for the kids and water, but â€śknowing that I may help save a lifeâ€ť is what inspires her to continue teaching every summer. â€śThe joy that children show after they experience success,â€ťMckenzie claims to be her favorite thing about teaching children.
As a swim instructor, Mckenzie offers advice to parents working with their children: enroll them in swimming lessons at an early age; encourage children not to be afraid of getting their face wet; practice blowing bubbles and holding their breath (practice in the bath tub; and finally, donâ€™t let them get too attached to their swimmy (floatation devices) or to the parent holding them.
When it comes to motivating children that are frightened of the water, Mckenzie believes that trust is the number one goal. Once the trust is built, she helps motivate them by providing incentives or rewards and compares them to a person they look up to, like a big brother or sister.
Below, you will learn more about Mckenzie, her experience as a swim instructor, and what inspired her to get involved in teaching swimming lessons to the children of Richmond Hill.