21 September 2011

DIY swimming lessons in Canberra?

| longshanks
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I would like to teach my two kids to swim. Decent swim schools are expensive and have long waiting lists.

At most other swim schools (we’ve tried a couple) you pay for a 30 minute lesson, but the kids only spend about 5-10 minutes swimming (I’m talking about beginner level here).

I used to swim competitively, and am more than able to teach them the basics – but we don’t have a pool.

Are there any facilities in Canberra where a parent can take their kids and teach them to swim?

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I had a similar experience teaching my two pups to swim. Private swim schools are probably the least effective and most expensive way of teaching kids to swim.

We invested in Laurie Lawrence’s DVD on his teaching kids to swim program, a few bits of kit like a kickboard, and a bulk pass to Tuggeranong Pool. Their shallow pool is shallow enough for the early lessons and deep enough for the intermediate ones (and it is heated to a nice temperature). Once they get comfortable with the basics, progress into the big pool.

screaming banshee4:57 pm 21 Sep 11

Define expensive….and how old are the kids?

if you have ever tried to teach your kid to swim, you will know why outsourcing is common. Try Kings, max 4 per class.

Anyway, you need an indoor pool if you want to do this year round, which obviously limits you. Civic pool is open all year for casual swimmers, although there are some short periods (especially weekend mornings) when the pool is closed for training and teaching. CISAC is similar. Both have lap lanes and ‘other activity’ lanes.

However keep in mind that these pools are deep so if the kids cant swim then it can be a problem and makes things more difficult for you. CISAC has a kids pool but its probably too shallow for much.

During summer Dickson is a great place with three pools of different depths for different levels.

imo its worth buying a kickboard for each of them. Not sure how “beginner” your kids are, my first lessons involved putting your head underwater (while lying in and out of the water) and blowing bubbles. Here is a list of some good things to start with (red section). http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/222/checklist.jpg/sr=1

“Decent swim schools are expensive and have long waiting lists”

Not in my experience.

i would suggest that before you start teaching your children to swim you make sure that you can perform first aid and more specifically CPR. swimming teachers dont just need to be able to teach kids how to swim, but have to know how to save live in the (hopefully unlikely) event that something goes wrong.

go to any pool, pick a quiet spot and do it – you might find other people don’t respect your “unofficial” lesson and other kids could jump in on yours.

One arm in front of the other and kick your legs in a frenzied manner until you’re not drowning any more.

troll-sniffer12:02 pm 21 Sep 11

Check with Olympic Pool in the city. I believe they have lane closures etc to accommodate learners. The Diving Academy get allocated an area (Sat mornings?), which I believe is bigger than they need so you might be able to work with them.

There are pools everywhere….. There are also many private pools, but they robably only let you in for their own private lessons. Your only options are l;ikely to be the public pools.

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