Tips to banish tears, better behaviour and boost motivation in swimming lessons.

Tips to banish tears, better behaviour and boost motivation in swimming lessons

What can parents do to boost motivation in swimming lessons?

One of the hardest parts of getting your children to go swimming isn’t the initial dunk; it’s getting them out of the house smiling and excited, week in week out! So, what can you do as a parent or guardian to help keep your little ones enthusiastic about lessons?

In this article we offer some advice on how you can boost your little one’s motivation in swimming lessons, banishing those tears and bettering their behaviour in lessons.

  1. Get involved in your children’s lessons!
    Letting your children know how much you love to watch them swim is one of the best things you can do. Kids love to shout out “Mum/Dad, look at me!” So, make sure you’re there watching them. It’ll make their day knowing that you’re watching them, rather than reading a book, browsing the internet on your phone, or worse, not being there at all! Be on the side of the pool encouraging them!
  2. Don’t distract them from the lessons!
    Although we’ve just said to be present and encourage your children onward, try not to distract them whilst they are swimming or listening to the teacher. ­­­These are some of the most important times in the pool and distracting your children from the task at hand.
  3. Don’t criticise their technique!
    Although it can be nice for children to hear feedback from their parents, you should put your energy into congratulating them on their swim rather than commenting on their technique. Leave the correcting to the teacher. If your children think you are going to comment on their stroke after lessons, they may be less willing to attend. What you consider bad technique, may be good technique to the teachers!
  4. Go swimming with your children outside of lessons!
    If you can take your little ones swimming outside of the lessons, then do so! Swimming is a great way to spend some quality time with your children and will make them want to improve.
  5. As a last resort – consider bribery!
    Bribery is a controversial matter in the parenting world! However, a little promise of a treat here or there can go a long way!

Call to enquire on 07505 065184 or email

Preparing for your first swimming lesson

Preparing for your first swimming lesson

Once you have booked and paid for your first term of lessons, it is important to prepare your child. Prior to attending lessons pave the way by talking to your child. Tell them their teacher is ….., where the lessons are, what they will be doing, where you will be watching and more.  Any anxiety is often eased by talking to them as they will have a better idea about what to expect.

Tell Core Aquatics as much as you can about your child’s learning style, behaviour, medical information. The more we know the more we can accommodate.

What to pack:

  • Swimming costume/trunks
  • Towel(s)
  • Shampoo/conditioner/hair brush
  • Swimming hat (goggles if your child already wears them)
  • Post-swimming snack such as a banana/drink of water
  • Any medical items such as inhalers or ear plugs if your child is prone to ear infections

Core Aquatics would love to hear from you! Ring today on 07505065184


What is the best type of swimming lesson for you?

What is the best type of swimming lesson for you?

One to one, two to one or group lessons?

There are many worries for a parent when seeking swimming lessons – will my child(ren) be upset, what if they do not like the teacher…! A key dynamic to seeking lessons is whether to have a group, one to one or two to one lesson type.
The answer is multifaceted, however here are a few points to consider (for and against) each session. Please note, these are generic points, what may be listed as a con here may be a pro for you – vice versa.

One to one lesson


  • Attention is completely focused on the one swimmer
  • Progression tends to be quicker
  • Can be used as a short-term fast track to transition into groups


  • Costly – you are paying for the exclusivity
  • Do not have a social side with other children
  • No peer learning/socialisation

Two to one lesson


  • Social interaction with another swimmer of similar level
  • Peer learning
  • Progression tends to be quicker than groups


  • More expensive than groups
  • If parents want their children to swim with a sibling/friend but they aren’t of the same level then this can be counter productive

Small groups


  • Ratio of max 1:4/5/6
  • Peer learning
  • Cheaper
  • More fun learning with others


  • Less one to one tuition – Core Aquatics approach ensures that more one to one tuition is given even in a group setting
  • There is still individualised attention but less than in 1:1 or 1:2

If you have any questions about Core Aquatics lessons or would like further advice on the best lesson type, contact us today!  Email or visit our website


Armbands/discs/jackets: 4 pros and 4 cons

Armbands/discs/jackets: 4 pros and 4 cons

Armbands/discs and jackets are also known as buoyancy aids as they are generally used to help swimmers more balanced and keep them afloat. Many parents/guardians ask whether they should buy/use and bring armbands, discs or jackets to lessons. My short answer is no; however outlined below are the pros and cons.


  1. Give swimmers confidence
  2. Cheap to buy
  3. Reassure parents
  4. Discs can give swimmers a more balanced buoyancy
  5. To help swimmers balance and to keep them afloat

Buoyancy aids such as armbands/discs and jackets often give swimmers and parents the reassurance and confidence. The worry of ‘my child will drown’ is taken away! These types of equipment are often used on holiday or on family swim time to give children the freedom and not rely on someone holding them. Given that they are cheap to buy and come in a variety of designs add further appeal to purchasing and using the aids.

Particularly for young swimmers/beginners, discs can provide a more balanced buoyancy to the more nervous swimmers. Again, increasing the swimmer’s confidence. As noted in the cons, be careful not to use for too long or frequently as swimmers can become reliant on them!


  1. Swimmers become reliant on them
  2. Some can be hard to fit
  3. Restrict movement
  4. Particularly jackets encourage an upright body position

Finding buoyancy aids that fit well is tricky, especially as they can restrict a swimmer’s movement. If movement is restricted, then swimmers will not progress as quickly and fall into ‘bad habits.’ Encouraging swimmers to find their own balance and be more independent. Water confidence and learning to swim on their own develops more quickly. The more aids you introduce and use, the longer it takes for the swimmer to become independent – including noodles and floats.

I always recommend, where possible, for parents to replicate lessons for about ten minutes on holiday to help reinforce learning and progress. Family fun is great support for swimmers and a special moment when you yourself have helped your child rather than a teacher! Be very positive, patient and encouraging!


Five top swimming tips

Five Top Swimming Tips

How to support your child’s progress in the pool!

Top Tip #1

Swim smart and stay safe!

When you and your family are around water, use this opportunity to teach your children about how they can enjoy the water safely.

Try to explain in an age-appropriate way what could happen if they got into trouble in the water. Encourage them to learn the code to safety (see below). And always keep an eye on your children when they’re around water – even if they can swim, and even if there is a lifeguard on duty.

Top Tip #2

Focus on fun and be creative!

Swimming should be fun for all the family! So, try not to get too hung up on teaching your children how to perfect the execution of a particular skill in the water!

Keep in mind that children learn best through play! So, a fun session should not be a lost opportunity to learn. Your children will be learning more than you realise!

For younger children, use water toys, games and sing songs to keep them engaged and motivated to move through the water. There’s plenty that they will gain from a bit of creativity on your part! In Core Aquatics swimming lessons, the children have visited the zoo, the supermarket and swum with mermaids and fishes – all without leaving the swimming pool! Keep it fun and they’ll keep learning!

Water toys and games are often still popular amongst older children, and so too are races and competitions! So, appeal to your child’s competitive side to help them build strength and practise their strokes. And, set them exciting challenges to help boost their swim skills (e.g. collecting as many sinkers as they can from the bottom of the pool).

Top Tip #3

Progress at your child’s pace

Every swimmer progresses at their own pace. So, with this in mind, try not to be too pushy when taking your child swimming!

Confidence in the water can take a big knock if a swimmer is pushed into something when they’re not ready for it (e.g. putting their face in the water). Because of this, try to be patient and wait for them to have a go at performing that skill of their own accord when they feel ready. Of course, by all means, encourage your child and demonstrate how it can be done safely in the meantime!

Top Tip #4

Encourage independence

When swimming with your children, encourage independence to help your children:

  • Develop water confidence
  • Build an awareness of how their bodies work in the water
  • Learn their limitations

Of course, safety should be a priority when practising swimming, so work on gradually reducing the amount of support you provide, and stay close enough to jump in and offer some assistance if/when it is needed!

Top Tip #5

Never underestimate the power of praise

If there’s one thing I’ve learned from almost ten years of teaching swimming, it’s that children seek reassurance and respond to positively to praise – especially that of their parents and guardians!

So, always try to maintain a positive attitude and praise your children!

If you do want to give a bit of feedback, try to sandwich your corrections with compliments and praise. Criticism can be frustrating and demotivating when learning how to swim, so always try to emphasise the things they’re doing well, rather than concentrating on what they need to improve.

We hope you’ve enjoyed these top tips and that you’ll be able to make use of them this summer!

For more information and advice on swimming-related topics, have a read of our other article posts. To learn more about what we do, follow us on Facebook.

How to become a swimming teacher

How to become a swimming teacher

Teaching swimming is by far the most rewarding job role I have had in the leisure industry. As a swimming teacher you have the important role of teaching a swimmer a life skill. The journey of taking a swimmer from beginner to advanced and seeing their reaction when they achieve something new is priceless. Admittedly, teaching swimming is not always a plain sailing job and there are challenges along the way. Nevertheless, the challenging can be the most rewarding!

What does it take to become a swimming teacher?

Before you decide to invest in training, firstly decide why you would like to become a swimming teacher. To be a swimming teacher the following characteristics are important

  • Patience
  • Understanding
  • Ability to be flexible and adapt quickly
  • Prepared to always learn – your courses are the foundations, use experience and the course knowledge to find the best ways of teaching – you cannot teach every swimmer the same way as everyone is different
  • Work well in teams – your colleagues can be a fanatic’s support mechanism, especially when you have a challenge and need to ‘pick their brains!’
  • Smile!
  • Enjoy what you do and incorporate fun, not necessarily through games but through your language. Speak to the swimmer in the language for their age. Include stories, television programmes – a Peppa Pig adventure (helping Peppa and George scoop ice creams for their friends (teaching front crawl arms) always goes down well!
  • Time – similar to patience, allow swimmers to progress in their time and learn when to push and when to offer more encouragement.
  • Praise – you are shaping their character, if a swimmer believes you then they will believe in themselves – give them the confidence

I could add so much to this list!

How do I start to become qualified?

The following qualifications/documents are required for becoming a swimming teacher – marked with mandatory and desired. Please note that there are two providers who train swimming teachers; Swim England and STA. Swim England. Amateur Swimming Associations (changed to Swim England in April 2017), courses provided through the Institute of Swimming (IoS) or the STA.


Supporting courses are:

  • Adult and child (parent and baby)
  • Rookie Lifeguard
  • Discipline specific – water polo, synchronised swimming….
  • Pool Plant Operator
  • Trainer Assessor


During and after your courses, I strongly recommend that you seek experience with a variety of swimming lesson providers. Always continue your personal development and learn the various scenarios you can face! Knowledge and experience are key to becoming a successful swimming teacher!

If you would like further guidance, interested in becoming a swimming teacher, contact Nicole today.


How to become a Lifeguard

How to become a Lifeguard

Lifeguards are very important and carry significant responsibility – at the end of the day, lifeguards ensure that all swimmers are safe and there to intervene if necessary.

Important elements to be a lifeguard are:

  • remaining vigilant at all times
  • approachable
  • maintain training standards by the governing body (Royal Life Saving Society) and the workplace(s)
  • reliable
  • professional
  • adaptable – to different pools, training updates and situations


Lifeguarding is generally a foundation for a career in the leisure industry or a part time job for students.


Often lifeguards are perceived to be ‘boring’, ‘fun spoilers’. Lifeguards prevent accidents and educate pool users, especially children, how to enjoy the water but remain safe! Pools have similar rules and some rules which will differ depending on the pool design, session activities and level of supervision from other qualified persons, such as swimming teachers.

Presenting yourself as a lifeguard in a professional manner and being able to quickly analyse situations is a necessity to effect actions which have positive outcomes. For example, simply asking a child to hold onto the side during a lesson educates the child a safe area. Similarly, asking swimmers not to dive in a specific area of the pool is preventing potential injury which could be minor or major.

How do I become a lifeguard?

Firstly, visit to read all pre-requisites, current course content and examination information. The Royal Lifesaving Society (RLSS) are the governing body for the National Pool Lifeguard Qualification (NPLQ), linked above.

Generally courses run through various providers such as private swim schools, leisure centres and clubs during school holidays.

What happens when I am qualified?

You can apply for jobs, however always maintain your monthly training to enable you to renew your qualification every two years. Ongoing training means you remain up to date with knowledge and skills. Often employers require employees to have the National Pool Lifeguard Qualification or teacher rescue when becoming a swimming teacher.

If you are a qualified lifeguard and you are looking for hours or to progress your leisure career, contact Core Aquatics today . Alternatively email or call 07505065184.


We are an enthusiastic team that deliver high quality swimming lessons. Lifeguards are an asset to us and we would love to value your lifeguarding and personal contribution!

Adult Swimming Lessons – Easy or Challenging?

Adult Swimming Lessons – Easy or Challenging?

Where do I start the topic of adult swimming lessons…?

There are two types of adults learners I have generally come across, ones who are beginners, generally resulting from a drowning or upsetting experience with water. Secondly, adults who can swim but want to improve technique for either general fitness or training for events such as triathlons.

Either way, often adults are nervous about taking swimming lessons, usually embarrassment. Firstly, there is nothing to be embarrassed about. Researching swimming lessons is a hurdle, attending the lessons is another – all great steps towards conquering those feelings and channelling them towards a more positive outcome.

Core Aquatics provide adult only swimming lesson times  providing the opportunity to learn in a peaceful more relaxed environment.


The vast majority of beginner adult swimmers have had a negative experience with swimming or swimming lessons. The most common circumstance is drowning when they were a child. I always admire an adult swimmer who comes to learn to swim with a history of traumatic experience(s) with swimming lessons.

To face a fear is not easy, Core Aquatics recognise this and therefore provide lessons tailored to the swimmer and build learning to swim skills gradually. Everything a swimmer does is an achievement and a step closer to becoming a confident and safe swimmer.

Along the way there are always challenges, not everyone is good at everything, and certain aspects take longer to pick up than others. Swimming is like riding a bike – easy once you know how and achievable with practice!

My key piece of advice for beginners’ is don’t give up!

Competent swimmers:

Some swimmers come to us who can already swim but would like to either train for a competition (usually triathlons) or want to improve their stroke technique.

Making small and simple adjustments to strokes can make the world of difference!

What are the challenges?

  • There are some challenges that all swimmers face and others are more adult specific!
  • facing a fear
  • anatomy – swimmers with muscle are more likely to sink and muscle weighs more than ‘fat’
  • confidence
  • grasping skills or strokes
  • turning up to lessons!
  • frustration
  • pushing themselves

If you are an adult and would like swimming lessons, contact us today to book your place and tell us how you want us to support you on your swimming journey.

Email or visit our website

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