I have quickly fallen in love with the Charlotte Swim Academy family. At the helm of this business is Miss Martha Sue Crowley, who greets you with a smile when you come in for your lesson and loves on your child. She truly makes you feel important and welcome. When I heard about her entrepreneurial story, I knew we had to share it on CSP. I LOVE a good Mom-entrepreneur! Not only is she successful in her business, but also in her home. She has a passion for swim that is second to none and has trained nearly 25,000 swimmers over the past 20 years. Her swimmers have become both collegiate swimmers as well as leisurely water lovers. Either way, these children have flourished in the water because of this warm-fuzzy swimming instructor, business owner and first and foremost, Mom! Lets learn a little about the amazing Martha Sue!
Smarty Mom Martha Sue Crowley
Smarty Mom Stats
Name: Martha Sue Crowley
Married to: Gary Crowley for 18 years
Children: Walter 13, Lillian 11, and Carolyn 7
Years in Charlotte: Gary and I are both native Charlotteans
Occupation: Charlotte Swim Academy Owner
Why and how did you start the Charlotte Swim Academy? I started the swim academy when I was a 19-year-old college student. I loved to swim and I loved to teach young children, so it was the perfect way to combine both passions. The first several years I leased indoor pools around the Charlotte area to teach my classes. I soon realized that warm water and a more controlled environment would be better for the children so I built our indoor facility. It was a huge undertaking for me at such a young age but something I felt passionate about doing. I was mindful of both children and parents when I build the facility. We have 7 private bathrooms instead of the traditional locker rooms and we also have a glass enclosed view area, which allows parents to watch in a more climate friendly area as well as minimizing distractions for the swimmers. I truly believed that having a place where the children felt at ease would make all the difference for their experience in the water.
What is your swimming philosophy and why was it important for you to share it with others? I believe everyone should know how to swim, but I also want them to know how to swim WELL. Learning to swim with proper technique not only makes safer swimmers but it also makes it more enjoyable for your family. Our curriculum really focuses on strong fundamentals of breath control, buoyancy and movement in the water. I feel strongly that as children flourish in these area’s they will become water safe at a younger age and enjoy their swimming experience.
How long should children be enrolled in swimming lessons? This is one of our most frequently asked questions. I wish every child could stay in lessons long enough to learn all 4 competitive strokes that way they are well trained for what ever their future holds. They may want to be a lifeguard, or swim on the high school swim team, or even swim as their form of exercise as an adult. We all know it’s so much easier learn things as a child so keep them swimming! Another popular question is should I swim year round. Here is my answer -Yes, but if you take lessons September through May while you’re already on a more regimented school schedule then you’re ready for the pool/swim team when it opens and you can take a break from lessons in the summer.
What is the most rewarding part of what you do? There are so many things that cross my mind when you ask this but as a teacher I have a unique opportunity to shape and mold our next generation. Learning to swim can change a person for life in so many ways- helping them learn how to become a student (listen, follow instructions etc.) and also how to overcome fears and persevere. Learning these things in the water translates to real life. I love watching children succeed and learn, not just about water safety, but also real, life skills.