All of the testimonials which appear throughout this website were submitted by actual students of mine. Their stories are real and have not been embellished. I will, upon request, provide a contact number for any testimonial.

Ashley, July 2022

Dear John:
“I’m truly amazed at how much I accomplished in four sessions; you’re the best!
I have feared water and drowning since I was young. It all started in elementary school when I was enrolled in swimming lessons at the YMCA. It was chaos, to say the least, and not surprisingly, I failed at learning how to swim. I also developed a fear of drowning after I experienced one too many “near drowning” experiences. That is when my contentious relationship with bodies of water began. After that, the water and I were officially sworn enemies.
Over the years, I became so embarrassed that I could not swim that I avoided water activities altogether. Finally, in my twenties, I became sick of people saying, “Oh my gosh! You can’t swim!” So I tried group swimming classes. However, I never completed the course because I could not overcome my phobia of holding my breath underwater. The instructors were not equipped to help me with my fear, so I quit.
I am not a quitter, so for years, I have felt determined to learn to swim. Luckily, at 37 years old, I found John, and I can now say that I know how to swim and have overcome my fears. Most notably, John taught me how to manage when fears and panic creep in, giving me practical strategies to use when I start practicing independently.
John is a masterful instructor. In addition to being a great counselor who helped me overcome my fear, he helped me develop competencies that will allow me to start swimming for exercise. The water safety skills I learned may even help save my life one day. John’s knowledge is unmatched. Other instructors never mentioned simple principles about buoyancy or what NOT to do when you feel like you may be drowning. I will always hear John’s voice.: “Head down, touch the sky, legs relaxed like rope, you’re unsinkable!” So many golden nuggets that I have now that will keep me confident and safe in the water.
Thank you, John, for your instruction and for sharing your knowledge. Now I can finally look forward to enjoying the freedom of being in the water. The water is now my friend!”
Thank you John! I hope you continue to enjoy your retirement.
Wishing you all the best,

Michelle: July, 2022

John, thank you so much for teaching me what swimming really is. Before coming to John I absolutely knew nothing about swimming. John made it so easy and he taught me that swimming is having fun and being relaxed. I learned so much in 4 lessons and he had so much patience with me.  I honestly never thought I was going to learn in just 4 lessons, but John made it possible.  I still need to practice more, but I am so glad that now I know how to tread water, jump in the deep end without having the fear of drowning, and know how to float on my back. I will be taking lessons with him again in the future.

Sundeep: July, 2022

I took swim lessons as a kid but never quite “got it” and now as an adult it’s been a goal to finally get it and overcome a fear of water…and hopefully learn to surf. Although I need practice to get more fluid and comfortable, I no longer have a fear of water and can swim and float after just four lessons. If you’ve always wanted to learn but thought you were too old or too scared, give John a call and you’ll be swimming in a few days.  I’m looking forward to practicing the things I learned and hopefully coming back to work on becoming more efficient once that’s all internalized.
Thanks John

Maja, July

“Swimming is like flying- it’s an amazing feeling. I feel as light as a feather in water. I decided to try again to learn to swim and to overcome my fear of water. I never knew that it’s all about breathing! My previous experience with a swim school started when I was a teen and it was a nightmare. John’s methods and techniques are nothing like any I’ve seen before & they’re very effective. What he is able to do in the pool is very impressive! John is very nice and patient. He is an excellent teacher. I can finally enjoy going to the pool which wasn’t possible before. A wonderful new chapter has started in my life!”

Abraham, June

Hey John:

Thank you so much for all your help. The whole experience was really fun and exciting. I had been afraid of the water basically my entire life.  I never thought I would be able to accomplish so much in just four sessions. I have since gained a lot of confidence and I’m glad to report to you that I’m able to swim on my back the length of a lap pool. I know I still have a long way to go, but like I mentioned, I feel more confident now; I know it’s just a matter of practice. I do plan on taking more classes at some point in the future, and I would be delighted to take those with you.

Thanks so much for everything John.

Sunny, June

John: It was a pleasure working with you over these past couple of weeks.  It is amazing how much I learned in just 4 classes! I’ve done things that I never thought I would be able to do- especially jumping into deep water!

Saurabh, May


It was a pleasure having you as my instructor. I learned a lot, was rightly challenged to try hard things from my perspective, and cherished the opportunity to learn.  For me, it was certainly time and money well spent!

I am currently trying to practice in my community pool whenever I get the chance; hopefully, I will be able to recall what you taught and contiue to improve.

Thanks again for your excellent teaching.

Rob, April

I enrolled my son Brevin in swim lessons at 4 years old.  After 8 long weeks of loud and chaotic pool time he was no further along than when he started. Still not swimming on his own, he remained  afraid to let go of the side of the pool or me.  He hated the lessons and we never went back.  At 6 years old he still wasn’t swimming; that is when I found John on the internet.  I enrolled my son in a package of 4 classes and by end of the first day Brevin was floating on his own.  John accomplished in one day what the typical swim lessons couldn’t accomplish in 8 long weeks.  After a week with John, Brevin had more confidence and was basically swimming on his own.

This summer has been so much more enjoyable for Brevin and I because he swimming on his own without fear.  He’s jumping into the pool and even jumping in the waves at the beach. He loves the water and I love the freedom of not having to hold on to him or watch him every moment he is in the water.  If your son or daughter is having trouble conquering their fear of swimming I highly recommend John.  His method works and you and your child can start truly enjoying your pool and beach time.


Manas – September 2016

“Learning even beginner skills with John was like being coached by a top professional. We felt absolutely safe at all times and benefited from the judicious mix of fun and seriousness in the program. We will probably be back next year to polish our skills. Since we live halfway around the world, that’s saying a lot!”


Gloria, August 2016

Now that I’m back from vacation, I can properly thank you for teaching me how to swim. You are an awesome instructor!! You helped me get over my fear of not being able to touch the bottom. I never thought I could jump into the deep end of a pool and recover. Thanks to you, not only can I recover, but I can now tread water, do a breast stroke, perform a flutter kick, float from front to back, dog paddle and more. And in only four lessons! My husband cannot believe that I went from being a rock, to someone who actually looks comfortable in the water. He was impressed! I had private lessons in the past from four different instructors and none of them accomplished what you did. John, you truly have a gift and thank you for sharing it.

Jamie, August 2016

I had been looking for swimming lessons for my 4 year old grandson for awhile. I really wanted 1 on 1 since he does better that way. I found John while searching online. I was impressed within the first 15 minutes!! He is very patient and calm with the kids. He speaks to them in a way that they will listen and stay focused. Quite a feat for a 4 year old boy; and, Asa loved going to him!

John got him to float on his back, which we hd been trying but he was resisting. I feel more confident now with him around pools. I would highly recommend John to anyone who wants a quick, seamless swimming experience. He was great! I will book future lessons when he is old enough to learn advanced skills and techniques. I can’t say enough, Thank you so much!

Megan, August 2016

I can not thank you enough for all of your help. It is amazing what a difference it can make doing something the correct way! My last couple of laps in the pool I felt very comfortable and was surprised to be at the end without being exhausted! I have already recommended you to a friend and will certainly pass your name along to anyone who is looking. Thanks again for all of your help.

Hala, July 2016

The experience was phenomenal. It is truly unreal what changes we observed in her abilities in 4 lessons. Kenzie (4) also loved every second that she was in the pool learning and continues to love it now. Thank you!

Nicole, July 2016

“As I sat by the pool last night and watched my young son jump in the pool and swim across the pool with confidence, I thought of how thankful I am that I invested the time and money in John’s 4 day swim program. The week prior to John’s training my son was begging for floaties to get into the pool. I highly recommend investing in John’s lessons for peace of mind and your child’s confidence and enjoyment”.

Jessica, June 2016

John is a phenomenal swim instructor! He guarantees that novice swimmers will learn how to swim in 4 lessons, well guess what…I learned in 2 days!! To be honest I didn’t think that anyone can teach me the basic techniques of swimming in 2 lessons. John does a great job explaining how our body functions in the water; which really helped put me at ease. You will learn that your body doesn’t easily sink in the water. I’m now comfortable being able to swim and float in deep water before heading to my vacation in July. Thank you so much John! I can now tell people that I can swim!! For those looking for a swim instructor don’t look any further, John is seriously your go to guy! J

Malmoona, September 2015

I’m in my forties and I’ve been terrified of water above chest level pretty much all my life. I asked for John’s help because I wanted to get past the fear. He has a no-nonsense style that prevented me from coddling my fear but he was also kind and funny and mindful of the fears so I felt safe. He helped me cope with the fears by teaching me several different skills to feel more comfortable in deep water. And he taught the skills in a gradual manner allowing me to develop a sense of mastery before tackling the worst fears. At the end of my eight sessions I went from never swimming to making swimming laps a part of my weekly exercise routine.

Sherry, July 2015


Thank you so much for everything you have done to help our daughter. The bond and trust you created with her was instrumental in the rapid progress she made.  She enjoyed the lessons and seeing her confidence soar has been wonderful.

As a parent of a child with special needs it is difficult to choose the right person to interact with your child.  You are an extremely gifted instructor!  Thank you for offering the opportunity for swim lessons in an unique environment.

Please feel free to share my contact information with others if they would like to hear about our experience.

Bahar, June 2015

I grew up in India, and like other kids, my parents enrolled me in some “famous” swimming lessons. Unfortunately, that instructor threw me into the pool. Apparently that method worked with other kids but, I was traumatized and developed a phobia for deep water. I enjoyed shallow water, but always had a fear of deep water.

After moving to San Diego, I checked into all water sports/activities and decided swimming would be a great cardio workout that’s easy on my joints, so I tried classes at SDSU’s pool to no avail. Then I found John- game changer! Day one – phobia gone. He proved his point; you can’t sink if you have air in your lungs. John has a unique teaching style whereby he proves his points before he asks you try them! I never thought I could swim on my back, but now I’m able to do that one lap and I’m going back to take swimming to the next level with John.

Tip: book in advance. His schedule is tight! Just follow his instructions, go with the flow, and you’ll be good to go. One more tip, stretch before class, I was too tight.

Sinul, May 2015

Dear John,

I enjoyed every moment of my time in the water. You are a fabulous trainer; especially considering my immense fear of the water. You instilled a lot of confidence in me the first day. You have quite the knack to analyze and put ideas across easily and lucidly. Also, you are quite witty and like to have fun during class, which I immensely enjoyed.

Yes, I will definitely recommend your unique, pragmatic methods of teaching. On my last and fourth class, I could do backstroke across the deep side of the pool. Prior to that, I jumped into the deep end and swam across to the other side.

I sincerely appreciate all that you did for me. You have amazing God given skills and talents, which you are using to help people. May God bestow upon you his choicest blessings and shower lots of happiness upon you and your family.

Steve, September 2014

John, I had a lot of fun working with you and have been swimming 90 minutes a few times a week since. You brought my very poor front crawl technique into order and as I continue to work on it I frequently notice areas (especially as i fatigue) where I get sloppy and can recall your advice – which helps keep things going smoothly.  I’m definitely on track towards improving to where I can comfortably complete triathalons. Thanks!

All the best,

Shahrzad, September 2014

My two young children were so fearful of the water that I had very little hope they would ever be able to put their heads under. They had a terrible and scary experience with a private instructor; and, the other long term swim classes were wasting our time and money. When John was recommended to me by a friend, we decided to enroll.

In just the first lesson I could not believe the progress my children made; in only 20 minutes they were actually going under and getting their hair wet! These were children who were very stubborn and  extremely hesitant by a pool. After the first lesson, my children were asking when they would be able to see John again and go under water (to this day they are still asking me this!) I was truly shocked & impressed at how he had changed their perspectives in such a short period of time. I am so grateful to John for having such an impact on my kids. They were able to float by the third class and my son actually did a little swimming across the pool. By the final, 4th lesson, my children, along with myself were sad to say goodbye. Having been inspired, my son and daughter are now eager to go into the water to practice the skills John taught them. I cannot express enough how great these lessons and our experience was overall with him. John is gentle yet stern and respects the children he works with. He is naturally great at working with kids. In return, my 4 and 5 year old responded very well and really liked learning to swim with him. We hope to continue next year when the summer season begins.

Trisha, August 2014

Dear John,

I would like to thank you for all of your help this weekend with my son, Patrick (10 year old).  Saturday morning, I told him about the scheduled lesson and my heart just broke as his eyes filled with fear and tears.  I promised him that I had done my research and that I really thought you might finally be the one that could help him.  I asked him to please just be open to it.  He left our home so nervous, insecure, and already defeated.

When he returned just an hour and a half later, he was happy, excited, and proud.  He told me that he finally thinks he will be able to feel comfortable in the water and now believes he will be able to swim.  He told me he couldn’t wait to go to his lesson the following day.  I was amazed.

He completed his second 50 minute lesson with you this morning.  He told me he floated on his back unassisted, he swam the width of the pool, and he feels more confident putting his head and face under water.  John, this is huge.  This is a boy who would barely just sit on the steps in the shallow end of a pool all summer….a boy who cried at the mere mention of swimming or swimming lessons…a boy who would absolutely not put his face under water…a boy who was physically getting sick during every swimming lesson at a swim school last summer.

The gift you have given our family is priceless. Thank you so much. We hope to have Patrick continue lessons with you in the future.


Trisha (Patrick’s mom)

Ira, August 2014

Hello John,
Thank you so much for everything! But, saying something as simple as that doesn’t really  begin to cut it.  You have given me such a gift.  Since our last lesson, one  week ago today, I have gone swimming every opportunity I have had (including Wednesday after work and Sunday morning).  I am swimming laps, playing with my float and exploring my balance and how my body operates under the water.  I am challenging myself with new tasks each day and thanks to you, I feel confident and safe while doing so.  Every day gets better and better and better and better!  Know that I am taking my time (in for the long haul with this one!), but here are the words I haven’t said for over two decades: I’m a swimmer!

It has been so exciting to swim with my husband and I have to tell you, words can’t describe what it was like seeing the look in his eyes when I made it from one end of the pool to the other by myself.  My body already feels better and I can’t wait to use it as a fitness tool.  After swimming in a public pool for the first time without you right there . . . I decided to share my story and post a 15-second video of my freestyle stroke on Facebook.   It was a big move for me personally to publicly “come out” as someone who couldn’t swim before I met you and people really connected to it.  I received over 200 “likes” and 60+ comments in one day!  It amazes me how many people share my same fears and after working with you, I have been telling everyone I know about it in hopes that my story may inspire others to achieve the breakthrough that I accomplished!

You are truly a inspiration and my life will never be the same again!


Bri, August 2014

I set out to find private adult swimming lessons in San Diego, somewhere with a teacher who specialized in people like me…. people who were convinced they would sink and drown if they got near a large body of water. And somehow I did: I found John, a swim coach, scuba diver, and retiree who lived nearby me, off the Sea World exit on the 5.

His promise was that he would teach me to swim in 4 lessons or my money back. Speaking of money, it wasn’t going to be cheap: for the 4 50-minute, one-on-one lessons, the cost was $400. And honestly, at this stage in my life, for me, that was more than worth it. After reading his testimonials and seeing that there was a guarantee, I decided to email John about taking lessons. When his pool opened up for the season, I was one of the first people he called to schedule. And within one week, he taught me how to swim.

Guarantee or not, I showed up for my first lesson convinced that John was going to turn me away or give up on me. Instead, I left that first day realizing something incredible: drowning is hard to do. It was in that class that John made a joke he probably doesn’t even remember: he called me “The Unsinkable Bri.” And in that moment my life started to take a new direction. Everything just clicked.

By the end of my fourth lesson, I was jumping into the deep end, treading water, doing back floats and taking underwater selfies. All things that might sound like no big deal to most people, but were previously unfathomable before I met John. And while I’m nowhere near a strong swimmer yet, I am unsinkable and in turn, unafraid. I couldn’t convey how huge this is if I tried.

I’m signing up for group swimming lessons at SDSU in the fall, something that was not even remotely possible before I met John: I would have freaked out if I tried to learn with other people around or with a coach who didn’t know how to work through my fears.

So today, on this first day of the last month of summer, I’m finally confident enough to say to the public: I can swim!

Merav, July 2014

“Our daughter always loved the water but was extremely hesitant when entering the pool. She would prefer to sit on the stairs rather than try to swim. We attempted group swim lessons several times, each time with tears and no positive results. Finally, at age 6, a friend recommended private swim lessons with John. Despite our daughter’s extreme shyness, he connected with her instantly. He was engaging, creative and an extremely good instructor. Talia was swimming after 4 lessons, without tears, but rather with excitement. She even requested to attend more lessons with him. She continues to love the water but now enters willingly and swims for hours in the pool. We highly recommend John to any parent who is seeking an experienced instructor who is fantastic with children.”