My Mermaid Swim School - Tampa Instructors


Amanda MartinoAmanda Martino

Amanda was born and raised in Connecticut, where she joined her local parks and rec swim team at the age of five. She has swum competitively year-round for the past 13 years, and competed in state championships on her high school team. At 16 Amanda knew she wanted to have a job in the water, so she got her Red-Cross lifeguard certification and WSI, and began teaching soon as she could. Since then she has spent her summers as a lifeguard and swim instructor at the same town pool where she began her swim career, and her winters teaching in Tampa Bay. She is currently studying at the University of Tampa to become a marine biologist. Amanda loves all things aquatic and would like to share her passion with others!


Daniel ThesingDaniel Thesing

Daniel grew up in Houston, Texas and spent his summers visiting the beaches of Galveston. There he fell in love with the water. To follow his passion for all things aquatic, he became a certified scuba diver and a Red Cross certified swim instructor. He spent time interning at Sea World, and then worked as a lead instructor for the Houston Scuba Academy and the Houston Swim Club. Daniel also enjoys volunteering and has spent much time at a facility for Autistic children and adults, assisting staff at both the school and group homes. Daniel is a senior at the University of Tampa studying Marine Science and History, and following graduation he plans to become teacher. Daniel loves the water and enjoys teaching even more!


Amanda Throndsen

Amanda has over 18 years of experience in Aquatics. She has taught for many organizations across the US and has a background in competitive swimming as well as specializing in teaching adults and children of all ages, levels and abilities. In addition to teaching swimming, she holds a BS in Business from the USF, a MS in Public Relations from UMUC, and is also an American Red Cross Lifeguard Instructor and Certified Diver. Currently, Ms Throndsen works full time for the American Red Cross.


Chris Vincent

Chris Vincent grew up in Syracuse, New York with two brothers and has always had a passion for leading a healthy and fit lifestyle. He went to school at SUNY Cortland where he majored in Physical Education. He has lived in Tampa since 2013 where he teaches for the Hillsborough County School District. The change in climate here in Florida allows him to participate in activities such as volleyball, golf, tennis, basketball, biking, and softball. If you know what a winter is like in Syracuse, New York you would know how grateful he is to have this change of lifestyle! Chris also teaches swim lessons at Harbour Island Athletic Club and enjoys being in the water as much as his students. He is very good at understanding each student's abilities and comfort level in the water, gearing each lesson on how the student feels. He looks forward to helping you or your child meet your swimming goals!


Taylor ZimmermanTaylor Zimmerman

Taylor grew up in Panama City. She began to compete in triathlons at a young age. Her family owned a boat, where they spent most of their weekends, launching into hobbies such as wakeboarding and fishing. Being so close to the ocean opened many doors, and allowed her to find passion in water sports such as surfing and paddle boarding. In high school she began to work for a dolphin tour company, consisting of driving boats and assisting tourist onto Shell Island, in search for dolphins and other wildlife animals. During her junior year of high school Taylor followed her Dad to Spain for 6 months to complete the 11th grade. That following summer She moved to Guam, a small, tropical island in the Pacific. Her love for the ocean and swimming continued there, as she became dive certified. Guam’s single season of summer allowed her to do the things she loves such as hiking, surfing, running, and of course swimming. Before moving to Tampa she returned to Panama City and began promoting a surf shop, encouraging people to paddle board and surf, by giving demos and lessons to those in need. Taylor is currently in school with a plan to graduate as a social worker. She loves to spend time with kids, especially when she is able to share her passion for the water, swimming, and all of its opportunities!


Anthony CarrAnthony Carr

Anthony grew up in several different states throughout the U.S. including South Carolina, Kentucky, Minnesota, and Florida. Though he moved around a lot, he was never far from a water source and spent every moment possible swimming, boating, and fishing with his family. He always enjoyed teaching his younger family members proper safety skills and swimming techniques. After moving back to Florida, Anthony immediately began teaching swimming lessons and also became a certified SCUBA diver. He discovered his passion for Microbiology through diving, collecting salt water organisms for his aquariums. Anthony has graduated with a B.S. in Microbiology from the University of South Florida and will be attending in Fall 2016 to pursue his M.S. Anthony is also CPR certified and enjoys sharing his knowledge of the water to help every student become safe and strong swimmers!


Nicole HarrisNicole Harris

Nicole was born and raised in St. Petersburg, Florida. Having grown up with a canal in her backyard, Nicole developed a love for the ocean at an early age. She learned to swim at 12 months old and quickly grew into an avid swimmer. She regularly enjoyed boating, fishing, and water sports. In middle school she swam on a recreational swim team for St. Petersburg Aquatics while also playing on a recreational soccer team. During high school, Nicole’s focus shifted from swimming to playing in more competitive soccer leagues, but she still loved being on the water or at the beach in her free time. At 14, she became Lifeguard, CPR, First Aid, WSI, and AED certified by the Red Cross through her high school. She also obtained her SCUBA certification and joined a youth diving organization. During the summer months when she was in college, she worked as a lifeguard and swim instructor for a city pool in St. Pete. Her style of teaching focuses on creating a fun and safe environment in which students of all ages can learn to swim. Her goal is to help mold students into confident swimmers with an appreciation and respect for the water. She has recently obtained her Bachelor of Arts in Communication Sciences and Disorders from the University of South Florida and is aspiring to become a Speech Language Pathologist. She currently works and resides in South Tampa.


Nicholas SmithNicholas Smith

Nicholas Smith was born and raised in Pennsylvania. He was a competitive swimmer for 16 years and was honored to serve as the captain of the Little Indians and the Titans. His primary events were Individual Medley, butterfly, and distance freestyle events. His competitive coaching background has included serving as a Titan Swim Camp Counselor for Westminster, where he coached athletes ages 7-18 for multiple weeks over the course of three summers. He also has eight years of experience lifeguarding, teaching swim lessons, and serving as a pool manager at the Mack Park Community Pool. He has taught private lessons, group lessons, and lessons for people with special needs. Nicholas is also an advanced open water SCUBA diver. Nicholas is currently pursuing his PhD at the University of South Florida in School Psychology. His ambition is to become a licensed psychologist, pursue a career in higher education, as well as maintain a private practice. He is a passionate Philadelphia Eagles fan and avid reader. Nicholas loves working with children and cannot wait to help your family become more safe in and around the water.


Kristen McKeeKristen McKee

Kristen is from Naples, Fl and was raised with the love for water. She was on her high school swim team and water polo team for all four years, and became captain of both teams her senior year. She went to college and earned a B.S. in Sport and Exercise Science in Orlando, FL at UCF. During her four years in college she raced in sprint triathlons and became a swim instructor for all ages in 2011. Once she graduated from college and moved back to her hometown in Naples, she became a supervisor for elementary aged students at an after school program with the YMCA. Kristen has a lot of experience working with children in different settings. She has the ability to adapt to different personalities and always finds methods that work best for each individual. As she currently works towards her career as a personal trainer, she enjoys working with both children and adults in teaching them how to swim. Her goal is for your family to be safe and for your child to develop the same love for the water that she has!