Little Kickers

It all started in a backyard.

When Yael was 16 she began to teach lessons in her parents small, kidney shaped pool. Over the years she taught at various apartment complexs where she lived, quickly growing, providing children with crucial water safety skills, a love for the water, and great swimming technique.

The business formalized in 2014, when Daphna, Yael's sister came on board to work on the business infastructure. Today Little Kickers is proud to serve over 1000 families and have added some wonderful instructors to its roster.

Yael Brandt

Co-Owner & Swim Guru

Yael has been teaching swim lessons for over 11 years. Her aquatics career began when she was sixteen years old at the Cherry Creek Athletic Club located in Denver. She worked there as a swim instructor for two years, and then decided to start taking her own clients in her dad’s small pool in the backyard. It began only as seasonal lessons with about 15 different families. Yael has remarkable connection with the children she teaches, as well as their parents, and a passion for what she does. Yael has a B.S. degree in Business Management. In her free time she loves doing Crossfit, playing with her dog Teddie, and relaxing!

Daphna Kapnik

Co-Owner & Operations

Daphna’s career in aquatics began in 2004, when she was a lifeguard and swim instructor at the Jewish Community Center of Denver, where she went on to become the Assistant Director of Aquatics. Daphna also has extensive program management experience in international education, working for nonprofit organizations on government programs for over 7 years, overseeing budgets, managing employees and client relations, and designing programs. Daphna holds a B.A. in International Relations from the Metropolitan State University of Denver.


Head Instructor & Swim Manager

Stephanie Jones is from St. George, Utah and has been living in Colorado for the last several years with her husband. She has been teaching for twelve years privately and at three different facilities. She has been trained in teaching children as young as three months old, teaching children one-on-one or in groups and teaching triathletes looking improve their stroke for speed or first learning as an adult. She has her Bachelors degree is Communication Disorders from Brigham Young University and is pursuing a masters degree in Speech Language Pathology.


Swim Instructor

Molly is from Salina, Kansas and is doing her undergraduate studies in international relations at the University of Denver. She has been a lifeguard and swim instructor for four years at two different facilities in Salina and is WSI certified to teach swim lessons through the Red Cross. Molly also coached for a local swim team during high school and swam competitively for eight years on a private team under USA Swimming regulations. In her free time, Molly enjoys being outdoors, photography, and babysitting!


Swim Instructor

Katie was born and raised here in Colorado and has been swimming since she was a child, first with the Aces Swim Club and then went onto competing with her varsity team in high school. Katie has been teaching swim lessons for 7 years at both recreation centers and privatly. She was an Assistant Swim Coach for the Lifetime Lightning Bolts for 2 years, where she specialized in coaching kids 8 and under. Katie was also a Master's Swim Coach for several years. Katie is currently working on obtaining her Real Estate License and in her free time loves being with family and playing with her puppy, Rosie!


Swim Instructor

Cheyanne has been teaching swim lessons since she was 16, and has had experience with group lessons, swim team, private lessons, and ISR self rescue lessons. She has worked with children as young as 3 months old all the way to adults. In her free time she enjoys playing volleyball, hiking, and spending time with her son.


Swim Instructor

Michael is a current grad student at DU and has worked as lifeguard, Red Cross swim instructor, and Director of Aquatics in his hometown of Wabasha, MN. When he's not in the water, you might see him conducting a choir or singing professionally in the Denver area! His number one goal is the safety and education of swimmers and Michael is excited serve that mission - teaching kids to be safe, have fun, and achieve.


Swim Instructor

Stephen has been teaching swim lessons since he was seventeen years old living in Park Forest Illinois, a south suburbs of Chicago. He spent summers teaching group lessons at his local pool where he also lifeguarded and most recently at taught at Bear Paddle Swim School in Orland Park Illinois. Stephen recently moved to Denver and is taking classes at the Community College of Denver and working towards a degree in education. Swimming has been a passion of his since he was a kid and Stephen very much enjoys being able to teach, watching kids improve every lesson. In his free time Stephen loves to take hikes with his dog Coco, bike around the city and play basketball!


Swim Instructor

Lauren grew up in Cleveland, Ohio and has been living in Denver for about a year. She has taught swimming lessons since she was 16 and has had experience with every age group from infants to seniors. She loves to make her students laugh and have fun during lessons. In her spare time, Lauren enjoys watching movies, doing improv comedy, and going for the occasional run. Lauren has a Bachelors Degree in Public Relations and a Maters Degree from American University in Strategic Communication. She currently works for a marketing company in entertainment communication.


Swim Instructor

Alex is a student at University of Colorado Denver studying recording arts and music business. He is a multi-instrumentalist with a passion for swimming and teaching kids the importance of knowing how to swim - and how fun it can be! In high school Alex was a varsity swimmer and a Texas State qualifier in 2012 & 2013.


Swim Instructor

Ashley is from Arlington, Virginia and recently moved to Colorado. She has been competitively swimming since the age of five. She has been a lifeguard and swim instructor for the past eight years. She has taught all ages from her 3 month old niece to beginner adults to triathletes in training, along side being a swim coach. She graduated with a B.S. in Geographic Information Systems and Environmental Conservation from James Madison University.


Swim Instructor

Brandon is from Denver, Colorado and has been swimming his entire life and teaching all ability levels for the past 8 years. Brandon truly enjoys seeing the progress of his students, helping them to achieve their goals and contribute to changes their lives positively. Outside of swimming Brandon enjoys basketball, snowboarding, hiking, music and spending time with his wife and son.