BABY & TODDLER CLASSES
How do I pay?
Any new swimmers can just pay individually to see how they get on, and then make a full payment for the rest of the block before the next session in order to save your space. Blocks are 6 weeks long and run through out the whole year, apart from the Christmas and New Year period (unless stated differently). Payment can be made by bank transfer (details upon request), cash or cheque made payable to Laura Kent. Payments are asked to be given in a named envelope and left on poolside with a Dinky Divers / Laura’s Swim Academy staff Member. Please refer to the Terms page where you will find all details regarding how/when to pay and more information there.
How old does my baby have to be before joining?
Its never too early to introduce your baby to the water! In fact, the earlier the better as babies have a natural affiliation to water. There is no age limit to when you can join, all new born babies are welcome!
Does my baby need to be vaccinated before joining?
NHS guidelines states that babies of any ages can go swimming, both before and after their injections. For more information, contact your GP or refer to the NHS Website.
Can both parents join in?
All of our pools have seating areas, welcoming families and friends to watch the lessons. Please note however, that some facilities are smaller than others and space can be limited! Due to pool space we allow one parent/guardian to be present in the water with your child.
Do I have to be able to swim?
Our baby and toddler lessons are always taught in the shallow sections of pools, therefore the fear of water depth is unnecessary! Most anxious parents and guardians bring their little ones to Dinky Divers to prevent passing on their fears to their child; many start to relax around the water upon joining too!
What do you do in lessons?
Many ask, how can a baby have swimming lessons?! Dinky Divers runs a fun and innovative programme, where we look at holding your child correctly, learning water safety exercises and mainly building confidence whilst having fun. Lesson activities including singing nursery rhymes, playing with toys and floats and word association. As your child progresses through the course, we incorporate more challenging movements to encourage independent swimming. Its also a fantastic way to bond with your little one, with skin to skin contact, which in itself is an amazing experience.
Is there a waiting list?
As my classes are full of little Divers, feel free to enquire about lesson spaces when your expecting to join. More information can then be given regarding venues, times and block dates.
Are there underwater submersions?
Our baby swimming programmes entails word association activities, preparing your little one to go underwater which helps promote independent swimming quicker. Once we feel your child is ready to go underwater, we will teach and help you to understand the correct and safe way to submerge your child. The parent/guardian with the child is not expected to go underwater.
How long can my baby stay with Dinky Divers?
As we teach all ages, new born babies can continues swimming with us right up to adulthood! Dinky Divers encourages independent swimming as soon as possible to ensure they are safe in the water. Once your little one is strong enough, they can progress into a Laura’s Swim Academy class with out a guardian in the water, preparing them for swimming unaided, focusing on technique and fitness.
When should I feed my baby?
Babies should be fed no less than an hour before their lesson; this is due to there being a lot of movement in the class! You may find your little one will be hungrier more than usual so may require a bigger feed; you’ll also be happy to know they tend have a nice long nap after!
What time should I arrive?
We recommend changing yourself and your baby at home before the lesson to ensure you have enough room as the changing rooms can get busy. Try to arrive on poolside 5 minutes before the lesson (already changed and ready to go!).
What do I need to bring?
Changing facilities tend to be fairly cosy with all the babies and parents/guardians, so try to bring as little as possible! We suggest pre changing at home to ensure you have enough space; please refer to ‘What should my baby wear?’ if you are unsure how to dress them for the lesson. Dinky Divers provides all toys and floats, but if your little one has a toy they love to play with, feel free to bring it along.
What should my baby wear?
Babies should come to lessons in a swim nappy (not a ordinary disposable one as this will just absorb all the water!), but a “water proof” one. These can either be disposable or reusable/washable ones; over the top you will need Neo Nappy Shorts, as this prevents leakages and seals everything in. A costume to go on top is optional, however advised if your baby is premature or small. Baby warmers are also recommended as these warmers are made from Neoprene, ensuring your baby is warm through out the lesson. As Dinky Divers trades with the leading baby swim wear company Konfidence, we proudly sell Konfidence products at a discounted rate for you. If you wanted any products or swim wear purchasing, contact Laura Kent with details regarding style and size.
Can we still swim if my baby has a cold?
Babies are prone to getting colds, and if its just the snuffles then its fine to come swimming. If they’re not feeling them selves and are generally quite miserable with it, then its best to stay at home and let them recover. If you have any concerns, check with your local GP or doctor first.
AFTER SCHOOL CLASSES
How do I pay?
Any new swimmers can just pay individually to see how they get on, and then make a full payment for the rest of the block before the next session in order to save your space. Blocks are 6 weeks long and run through out the whole year, apart from the Christmas and New Year period (No lessons over school holidays periods at the Belfry, unless stated differently). Payment can be made by bank transfer (details upon request), cash or cheque made payable to Laura Kent. Payments are asked to be given in a named envelope and left on poolside with a Dinky Divers / Laura’s Swim Academy staff Member. Please refer to the Terms page where you will find all details regarding how/when to pay and more information there. Private 1to1’s may cancel with 24hours notice given and lesson can be transferred – if you cancel ‘last minute’ you will still be charged.
What do I need to bring?
Swimmers should own their own costume and towel – any other accessories such as; swim caps, ear plugs/bands, flip flops, nose plugs etc are optional. Goggles are advised, however we provide goggles (subject to availability).
Laura’s Swim Academy do not use armbands, but body belts. If you own one, feel free to bring it along. Body belts and other accessories can be purchased of Laura upon request. Children with long hair are advised to wear their hair in a pony tail.
When should I arrive?
Swimmers should be dressed and showered on poolside 5 minutes before the lesson begins. Pre changing at home is advised as changing rooms can get busy.
How long until my child can swim unaided?
As every child strengths and weaknesses are different, progression rate can vary. Our lessons involve strength and confidence building exercises to ensure a natural development is in place. We will never push your child into doing something they truly fear, but encourage them to gradually tackle that fear to ensure they can progress.
What do you do in the lessons?
Our groups are categorised into their ability level, where lesson aims and objectives are similar or the same. All lessons focus on confidence, swimming competently with and without floats and water safety. Upon completing the basic front and back paddle, we look into stroke work and correct breathing. For more detailed information of what goes on in our lessons, please refer to the Lessons page, where you can read about the different levels.
How do you categorise my child's ability level?
Laura’s Swim Academy ensure each child is placed in the correct ability class so all of our students can progress quickly. By keeping our lessons in ability order and not age order, our children develop naturally and efficiently. Before joining our lessons, you will be asked if your child has had any experience. Let us know what you’re child is capable of and we will find a group which is similar to your child’s ability. If after the lesson the child is not suitable for that group, we will offer you an alternative lesson which is more beneficial for your child.
Does my child need to go underwater?
Underwater swimming improves fitness and stamina incredibly, therefore we encourage it as progression rate tends to be a lot quicker. Not only is it hugely beneficially for health, but for safety also – for example, if they ever fall in the water accidentally, they need to be confident to ensure they can return to safety competently. Your child does not have to be able to swim underwater, but we will help your child to find the confidence and encourage them to do so. Underwater becomes a necessity when learning strokes, as the majority of it is performed with the face in the water.
How can I motivate my child to go underwater?
Many children refuse to go underwater as they are scared of doing so or drinking the water and choking; before actually going underwater we always start with blowing bubbles. You can practice this with them in the bath or the sink – starting of with just the mouth in, gradually trying to encourage putting their nose in whilst blowing. Once they are confident with blowing bubbles and seeing that they do not choke, you can try wearing some goggles and putting their faces in. Owning their own pair of goggles is a great incentive too! You can also try sinking toys, where your child has to go underwater and retrieve the objects.
Can my child eat before swimming?
We recommend eating lightly before your lesson no less than an hour before swimming; this is to prevent any feeling of sickness as swimming involves a lot of movement.
Can they play in the facilities after the lesson?
The majority of our pools that we teach at have back to back lessons, so usually the pool is unavailable to play in after. Some pools however have baby pools (shallow sections) which they can play in for a maximum of 10minutes as long as supervision is near them & with them all of the time. If you are members to any of the facilities which do have available sections to swim in, as long as you are in the water with you’re child then you are more than welcome to stay as long as you like.
Can we bring food on poolside?
Most pools we teach at do not allow food and drink on poolside/changing rooms due to hygiene reasons – if there is a cafe on site, clients are permitted to use these.
What is the STA Badge Scheme?
Laura’s Swim Academy are proud members of the STA, where we follow The International Learn to Swim Programme (ILSP) which is an exciting, motivational, interlinking and progressive Awards Programme that engages children at every stage of their development. All levels have clearly defined standards, teaching objectives and learning outcomes, and all levels incentives and reward with colourful badges and certificates. Levels are; Octopus, Goldfish, Angelfish, Shark – All have 3 stages within. Bronze, Silver & Gold levels for advanced swimmers.
Can my child swim if they have a cold?
Colds are a common illness for children as they grown and strengthen their immune system, however they come and go through out the year and are generally non-significant. If your child feels fine within themselves and you feel that they’re able to participate, then its fine to go ahead and carry on. You can also let your child’s instructor know that they are feeling a bit under the weather, so we are aware and can amend the lesson accordingly. If you are unsure, please refer to your local Doctor.
CHILD & ADULT 1TO1's
What do I need to bring?
Laura’s Swim Academy provides all necessary floats and equipment – swimmers are only asked to provide their own goggles, nose clips (if needed), ear plugs (if needed) etc if they wish to use them.
What do you do in the lessons?
Each lesson is tailored for each individuals specific needs. Upon joining, we will find out what you want to achieve and help you to do so. For more information about what we do in the lessons, please refer to Lessons tab where more details are provided.
How do I pay?
Any new swimmers can just pay individually to see how they get on, and then make a full payment for the rest of the 6 week block before the next session in order to save your space. Adult’s are asked to pay for at least 3 lessons to save your allocated space.
Lessons run through out the whole year, apart from the Christmas and New Year period (No lessons over school holidays periods at the Belfry, unless stated differently). Payment can be made by bank transfer (details upon request), cash or cheque made payable to Laura Kent. Cash & cheque payments are asked to be given in a named envelope and left on poolside with a Dinky Divers / Laura’s Swim Academy staff Member. Please refer to the Terms page where you will find all details regarding how/ when to pay and more information there.
How long does it take to swim unaided?
Every one is different; we all have strengths and weakness that vary, therefore progression rate can vary. Our lessons involve strength and confidence building exercises to ensure a natural development in place. We will never push you or your child into doing something you truly fear, but encourage you to do so in your own time so we can gradually tackle any fears to ensure progress.
Is underwater optional?
Underwater is not a necessity when learning to swim, but it is however advised as it not only builds your strength and fitness quicker, it’s actually easier! When your face is fully submerged, you’re body naturally floats and is in the correct position, therefore making it easier to swim and travel through the water. Learning to swim underwater is also beneficial for safety reasons – allowing water to be near the face ensures you remain calm if you were to fall in or be splashed.
ABILITY LEVEL BREAKDOWN
From new born up to 4years. All classes have a guardian/parent in the water apart from the pre school classes. For the parentless pre school classes, children need to be confident in the water and also be able to swim independently with a float belt on.
Would need a float belt to be able to swim front & back paddle. Also learning underwater swimming once confident, floating & starting some basic breast stroke after the front & back paddle are stronger.
5 to 10m of front & back paddle, breast stroke & back crawl without floats. Just learning front crawl.
10m to 20m of front crawl, back crawl & breast stroke without floats.
20 to 50m of all strokes & learning correct breathing.
100m in all strokes with correct breathing. Diving & correct transitions.
Longer distances for all strokes. Working on fitness, stamina & speed training.
Unsure which ability level?
If you are unsure which ability level your child would come under. Then please either state this in the enquiry form, under ‘additional information’ with a bit about your child’s level and we will get back to you. Alternatively please call Laura’s Swim Academy and we will be happy to speak with you to clarify – 07813465805.
Level Breakdown Chart
|OUR LEVELS||STA AWARD||SWIM ENGLAND AWARD|
|Beginners||Octopus 1 & 2||Level 1|
|Beginners Plus||Octopus 3 & Goldfish 1||Level 2|
|Intermediate||Goldfish 2 & 3||Level 3 – just goldfish 2 / Level 4 – just goldfish 3|
|Intermediate Plus||Angelfish 1, 2 & 3||Level 5 – just Angelfish 1 / Level 6 – Angelfish 2 & 3|
|Advanced||Shark 1, 2 & 3||Level 7|
|Advanced Plus||Bronze, Silver, Gold & Platinum||Level 8 & above|