Leahi Swim School Get’s Back in the Water

Mar 22, 2010 | PC Community


Leahi Swim School founder, Lori Komer was all smiles on Sunday at the re-opening of the Pearl City Foundation's, Momilani Community Center pool after four months of renovations. Under sunny skies, the pool glistened as Leahi Swim School members, family and invited guests took to the water for first time since late November.

Leahi Swim School members and family having a great time in the newly renovated pool. Photo Barry Villamil / [email protected]

Leahi Swim School is a family run business.  Lori Komer is a certified Lifeguard, is trained in CPR, First Aid and is accredited by the National Swim School Association in Infant Aquatics. She has been teaching swimming since the early seventies and has been in charge of Leahi Swim School since 1974.

Lori's son, Ben Komer serves as vice-president and has helped his mother teach swimming since his youth. He was also instrumental in overseeing the Momilani Community Center pool renovations.

“We started the week after Thanksgiving and we finished, actually we plastered the pool on Tsunami day," said Ben Komer.

"We had twenty-five guys out here. They completely plastered the whole pool in half a day," added Lori Komer.

If you remember the old Momilani Community Center pool, you would be impressed with the 2010 version.

"It’s a brand new pool. It’s the most state of the art teaching pool in the State of Hawaii. It’s a culmination of Lori, my mom’s idea at our Manoa location, and this pool here. We really made it user friendly for teachers and for infants and toddlers. Seventy-five percent of the pool is less than 4 feet deep," said Ben Komer.

“That’s crucial for infants and toddlers because in our style of teaching, our philosophy is they need to learn the basics and if they're not comfortable learning the basics in deep water, you’re not going to be able to teach them that. In shallow water they will be able to learn and when you really build up their confidence, then you can move them to deeper and deeper water. There’s an easier transition.”

Ben Komer, Lori Komer and Pearl City Foundation Executive Director, Breene Harimoto. Photo By: Barry Villamil / [email protected]

The new pool was designed to make it easier for the instructors to teach as well as eliminating the wading pool that once sat separate from the main pool on the Momilani Community Center property.

“There’s a ledge around seventy-five percent of the pool which makes it more conducive to the kids paying attention in class instead of standing in water and bouncing around and fooling around and going under water. They are in a seated position and can't really go anywhere, said Ben Komer.

“You can’t teach in a wading pool. The poor teachers have skinned knees because it’s used for wading. The other problem with wading pools is that little kids dive into wading pools and they konk themselves and it’s just not safe,” said Lori Komer.

Pool ledge wraps around 75% of the the new pool design. Photo By: Barry Villamil / [email protected]

Leahi Swim School Teachers and Certified Lifeguards (Left to Right) "Uncle" Billy Remular, Jillian Luis, Vice President Ben Komer and Aaron Luis. Photo By: Barry Villamil / [email protected]

Lori and Ben Komer have made personal commitments and investments in the  Pearl City Community through their love for swimming and the passion to teach others to enjoy the water as well.

“We got a loan and bit the bullet and invested in ourselves and the community center and we’re here for the long haul to get this community swimming,” said Lori Komer.

To contact and learn more about Leahi Swim School and to view pictures of the Momilani Community Center pool renovations log on to: http://www.leahiswimschool.com.

Leahi Swim School operates 2 locations on Oahu:

Manoa Location
Saint Francis School
2707 Pamoa Rd.
Honolulu, Hawaii 96822
(808) 988-7146

Pearl City Location
Momilani Community Center
715 Hoomoana Street
Pearl City, Hawaii 96782

(808) 456-4506

Nick, Cindy and Nina Shaw enjoying the day at the pool. Photo By: Barry Villamil / [email protected]

Jasmine, Paula and Jacob Obrey all smiles at pool side. Photo By: Barry Villamil / [email protected]


Congratulations to Leahi Swim School, Pearl City Foundation and Momilani Community Center!