As Canberrans, our love of the great outdoors is sure to produce two things. First, the need for sunscreen, and second, an encounter with water. Be it a dam on a farm, a lakeside park, or down on the coast, there are plenty of opportunities to get wet.
With the ability to swim being essential for every Australian, acquiring the skills is key. And while most of us can muster a paddle unaided, proper technique and skilled manoeuvring can only be gained by instruction.
Indeed, the list of benefits gained from attending swimming lessons is staggering. Aside from the obvious, it aids in social, cognitive and physical development, along with boosting confidence and self-esteem. Importantly, it keeps us healthy!
Whether you a seeking to enhance your swimming ability, or that of your children, a local swim school can help. If you’re seeking lessons to keep you splashing around, look no further than our pick of Canberra’s best.
What makes a great swim school?
Great swim schools ultimately nurture a lifelong love of water. Their passionate instructors equip students with the skills and confidence needed to fly through the water. Before you jump in, we suggest considering the following:
- Experienced instructors. One of the greatest assets of any swim school is its instructors. Naturally, a passion for teaching is key, along with the ability to engage with students of all ages and abilities. Any good swim school will offer a range of classes, from babies and beginners to advanced squads, so be sure to find a class that suits your needs. Importantly, your instructor should be qualified and experienced, ideally accredited by a nationally recognised program such as the Swim Coaches and Teachers Association.
- Sound methods. One of the key determinants for swim success is methodology, or how a lesson is taught. From lesson structure and class size to frequency of assessments and technique, there is plenty to consider. While lesson outcomes are generally consistent across the board, the pathway to accomplishment varies. Many established swim schools adopt their own tried-and-tested methodologies. And while one size does not fit all, a record of success certainly helps.
- Fabulous facilities. The best swim schools offer an environment that is conducive to both learning and comfort. For students and carers, this equates to things such as a comfortable water temperature, spotless restrooms, ample change facilities, and plenty of seating. Many great schools even offer on-site snacks and the ability to purchase swim essentials like goggles and caps. Finally, consider hygiene, noting cleanliness and well-maintained facilities. If in doubt, pop into your local school and request a quick tour of the premises.
- Convenient. As a place that you will visit frequently, finding a swim school that is also convenient is essential. When reflecting on convenience, consider proximity and travel time, accessibility via private and public transport, and of course ease of parking. Also consider lesson schedules – and whether the proposed class times fit with your plans.
- Affordable. Last, but certainly not least, is affordability. While lesson costs vary, finding a solution that bridges need with price matters. Consider the frequency of lessons, whether private or class tuition is best, and lesson costs. Moreover, enquire about absentee policies, noting make-ups and lesson holds. Life happens, and in the event of sickness or clashes with other commitments, it pays to be clear on policy.
The best swimming lessons in Canberra
Riotact’s editorial team has combed through 20 years of on-site comments to compile a list of the most recommended businesses according to you.
To be listed in our Best of Canberra series, each business needs to have consistently received positive feedback on Riotact and maintained a minimum average of 4/5 stars on both Google and Facebook reviews.
JUMP! Swim Schools Fyshwick is a boutique learn-to-swim facility for babies aged from 3 months to pre-squad (10 to 11 years). Intimate classes, conducted by expert, qualified teachers, make children feel safe on their swimming journey. This personal and flexible facility, equipped with a heated purpose-built indoor pool, is comfortable and inviting.
At JUMP! Fyshwick, children are greeted by name. Private swimming lessons are available for children needing extra support, and those with special abilities or disabilities. Swimming teachers monitor progress each session. Quality is ensured through a customer satisfaction program.
Members of Austswim, Swim Australia and Royal Life Saving Australia, JUMP! Fyshwick operates in line with the best in practice standards of these national training bodies.
Jonathan Kent wrote on Google, “A really great learning environment for swimming. The pool is super warm, so you don't have to worry about the chilly Canberra mornings. Class sizes are small, and staff remember the children by name.”
Stellar Swim offers fun and interactive swimming lessons for babies and children of all ages and abilities, as well as teenagers and adults.
The children’s swim program is based on the Royal Life Saving Society’s Swim and Survive program. Stellar Swim offers regular assessments and feedback, so parents and carers always know how a child is progressing. School holiday swim intensive classes power up childrens’ skills in the water.
Adults swim classes are on offer and aqua aerobics classes, held in graded pool depths and warm water, for all fitness levels.
Health Club members have access to lane space and can relax and recover in high-quality pool facilities.
The Stellar pool is 17m long by 8m wide.
Marijana Rogic wrote on Google, “My kids absolutely love their swimming teacher … She is very patient and you can see she genuinely enjoys working with children. My kids have very quickly moved up levels …”
Locally owned and operated, Aquatots has been teaching Canberran’s how to swim for over twenty years. Their award winning learn to swim programmes cater to babies as young as six months, all the way through to squad level swimmers.
Boasting three warm, clean, and private facilities cross Forde, Nicholls, and O’Connor, they present many convenient choices. With a team of highly experience and qualified instructors, Aquatots are hard to beat.
Rhiannon Ryan had this to say on Google, “Have been taking my daughter since she was 6 months old, absolutely love the team and vibe here. Always keep the lessons interesting.”
As a swim school dedicated to families, Kingswim offers a warm and welcoming environment in which to learn to swim. Through their lessons, Kingswim aims to unlock the cognitive, physical, and social development in students whilst teaching an essential life skill all the same time.
With 21 locations nationwide, Kingswim offers three regional schools located across Deakin, Majura Park, and Macgregor respectively. For lessons for all ages and stages look to Kingswim.
As Mark L shared on Google, “Good professional swimming school for kids.”
Established in 1998, Aqua Harmony Swim School have a glowing reputation for their nurturing approach. Privately owned and operated, they take pride in their highly personalised offering, focussed on creating the ideal environment for learning.
Their team of qualified and highly experienced instructors run a range of classes promoting safer swimming for babies, pre-school, and primary school aged children. Running 48 weekly classes per year from their centre in Kambah, Aqua Harmony Swim School are a great choice.
Kelly Bennet shared this feedback on Google, “Fantastic swimming school. All the staff and teachers are so welcoming and accommodating. Excellent management. I can’t believe how much my kids’ swimming and water confidence has improved in a few short months. Can’t rate highly enough.”
For over thirty years, Aquatic Achievers have been helping to create confident swimmers with a deep love of water. Boasting eleven locations around Australia, their locally based Calwell swim school is a purpose build centre dedicated to learning how to swim.
With lessons for infants, pre-school, primary and school aged children, their seven-day swim schedule focuses on confidence, gaining essentials skills for strokes and safety awareness. With a fully enclosed heated pool and a raft of amenities they stand as one of Canberra’s best.
Paulina shared this sentiment on Google, “An amazing team of young, dedicated teachers. Very consistent approach to teaching. Our daughter has been there since she was 3 months old and loves it! Highly recommended.”
Your experience with swimming lessons in Canberra
Thanks to our commenters who have provided insightful feedback. If you believe we have got it wrong, please let us know.
Have you had an experience with any of the swim schools listed above? If so, share your feedback in the comments below.
Frequently Asked Questions
When is the right time for children to start swimming lessons?
Many swim schools offer lessons for children as young as six months; however, some say age four is a good time to start. Ultimately, the earlier the better - yet it is never too late to begin!
What is the difference between a private and a group lesson?
The main differences are group size, lesson structure, and cost. As the name suggests, private lessons are based on the needs of a single student, with a one-to-one student-to-teacher ratio. Conversely, group lessons are typically conducted with a four-to-one student-teacher ratio, where the needs of the collective group are addressed at a lower cost to that of private lessons. The right one for you will depend on your needs – and desired outcomes.
How frequently should I attend swimming lessons?
When it comes to learning to swim, consistency is key. Most swim schools operate to a weekly lesson cycle, and some even offer optional intensive programs throughout the year.
How much do swimming lessons cost?
Lesson prices vary, based on format and need. As a guide, pricing ranges from about $20 per lesson for a class of four, to upwards of $100 per lesson for private one-on-one tuition. For more detailed pricing, contact your local swim school.
What if I miss a lesson?
Most swim schools aim to make keeping lessons as easy as possible. In many instances, make-up lessons are offered; however, be sure to clarify the absentee policy with your swim school before signing up.