Hi! I am Rachel Hennig. I was born and raised in the Dallas area, and have found myself back here as an adult. I attended Texas A&M University for undergrad where I earned my Bachelors of Science in Kinesiology, concentrated in motor behavior, with a minor in psychology; afterwards, I attended UTMB in Galveston to earn my Masters of Occupational Therapy.
I have worked as an occupational therapist since 2015 and have a passion for working with people to allow them to live their life to the fullest - no matter the condition or life circumstances. My first three years of practice were specialized as a pediatric occupational therapist, specifically providing treatment to children with sensory processing disorder. In 2018, I moved from Denver back to Texas in order to be closer to family and transitioned to working in acute care in the hospital and gain experience in the NICU.
In 2019, I experienced the tragedy of drowning firsthand: my sweet, sassy, and precious two-year-old niece Naomi drowned on Memorial Day. This not only opened my eyes to the epidemic that drowning is (#1 preventable death in children ages 1-4!), but more importantly gave me the motivation to do something about it.
After initial research, I was very impressed by the theory behind the infant survival swim program; however, I was honestly overwhelmed by the time commitment and expense as I work full time at a hospital. Around the time of the first-year anniversary of my sweet niece’s passing, I was fortunate enough to be put in contact with Infant Aquatics founder Judy Heumann. After reaching out to her on a “Hail Mary,” she agreed to allow me to join her current group of trainees, provided I could commit to being in Colorado by Monday. Now –I received her message on Saturday morning – so this task was daunting. But, by the grace of God, all mountains were removed from my path, and I was able to pack up my life and relocate to Colorado for the next 6 weeks to train at Swim Float Swim! under Judy’s expertise. During my time in Colorado, I was not only able to learn from Judy herself, but was fortunate to gain additional knowledge from her wonderful staff as well as my training partners who both had a good baseline understanding of the Infant Aquatics program.
I am eagerly looking forward to providing swim lessons for the vulnerable population of children ages 1-4 within my community. This is a cause I am passionate about given my experience; I am fortunate that my training as an Occupational Therapist helps me to observe, assess, and improve your baby’s survival swim skills! Losing Naomi was one of the hardest experiences of my life and my mission is to spread water safety awareness so that no one in my community has to suffer the tragedy of losing their child to drowning. I look forward not only to teaching your children the survival skills they need if a water accident were to occur, but also provide them (and your family) with a healthy respect for the water so that it can remain a happy, fun, and SAFE space for recreation!