Joie uses humor and lots of praise with her students, knowing that learning to swim all starts with learning to relax.
Janet Romanic, a student, hasn't had a swimming lesson in 20 years but wants to swim with her daughter.
"She wanted me to come to the deep end with her and I said no, I'm afraid to," she says.
Nirupama Isaac, a first timer, had a close call on a canoe trip.
"We all fell in the water. It was horrible. So that was when I decided I needed to learn swimming."
But fear is not their only obstacle.
Putting their face in the water is huge. That's a big fear for most adults and children alike. Gulping down water instead of breathing the air is also a common problem.
But, over the next few weeks, Joie is teaching her students the basic swim strokes. Until then, it's a trip to the deep end with a little more reassurance - a place that's not so scary after all.