Learn to swim: frequently asked questions

Where do lessons take place?

Lessons take place at the National Swimming Academy, on campus at the University of Stirling Sports Centre. The Learn to Swim programme has exclusive use of the left pool (Pool A – closest to the shower area) during lessons.

How do I get to the University?

Please visit http://www.stir.ac.uk/about/getting-here/for the best ways to travel to and from campus. You can also view campus maps to show the location of the swimming pool.

Can I park at the University?

Visitors should note that at certain times, demand for car parking spaces at the sports centre may exceed supply. Parking charges are in operation from Monday to Friday, 9am–5pm, all year round. If you choose to park elsewhere on campus, it is a 5 minute walk from either the Cottrell car park or the Pathfoot car park, and a 10 minute walk from the University’s student accommodation car parks.

What time should I arrive on poolside before the start of my lesson?

You should arrive on poolside 5 minutes before the start of your lesson. We want the transition between classes to be as smooth as possible, so we ask that you or your swimmer are showered, seated on pool blocks at the lifeguard end, and ready for the instructor to take registration.

What should I expect from the first lesson of the new block?

We ask for your patience at the start of each block when new swimmers join our programme. After assessing against our learning criteria we may ask swimmers to move ‘tank’ within their allocated time slot to a more suitable class. You will be advised of any moves by the Sports Participation Officer after the lesson.

What will I need for my lessons?
Appropriate swimwear, towel, goggles, swimming cap (if possible). Please remove all jewellery and have any long hair tied back. Your swimmer will need to take with them their ‘listening ears’ and a positive attitude!

Can I stay to watch during the lesson?

We have seating on one side of the pool where parents are welcome to sit and watch. To avoid any delays to the lesson schedule, please address ask any questions to our Lead Instructor on poolside, and not the class instructor. You can always contact learntoswim@stir.ac.uk after lessons. We aim to respond within two working days .

What is being taught?

From Block 1 of the 2017/18 programme onwards, we are delighted to be teaching the Scottish Swimming National Framework. Our Learn to Swim Programme will consist of six levels:

  • Pre-school
  • Swim Skills  1
  • Swim Skills  2
  • Swim Skills 3
  • Swim Skills  4 
  • Club Ready

We’ll also be teaching a Swimfit class, for those swimmers close to completing Swim Skills 4.

The programme provides a fun, progressive and all-inclusive pathway for children to participate in any aquatic discipline to whatever level they aspire to.

What qualifications do the swimming instructors have?

All of our swim instructors are UKCC Level 1 or 2 qualified, and regularly contribute to CPD sessions within our programme. We’ll also be joined by a Lead Instructor to assist the delivery of our programme 

What kind of feedback will I receive about my swimmer’s progress?

We have received a great response about the feedback you would like to receive from us and are currently working on the best method of keeping you up to date with how your swimmer is getting on.

If you require further information, please contact learntoswim@stir.ac.uk.

Will my class time ever change?

Ideally no, as the National Framework allows swimmers to develop and progress within their current class. If however, due to unforeseen circumstances, you require a move between lesson days, please contact the Sports Participation Officer on learntoswim@stir.ac.uk

What if I miss a lesson?

Refunds are not considered for missed classes. Only under special circumstances are refunds allowed and administered by the Sports Participation Coordinator.

What happens at the end of each block of lessons?

As with all our participation programmes, we operate a priority booking system – meaning that once you are in the programme, at whatever level, you will not need to re-join another waiting list for the next class in your swimmer’s progression. You will be contacted by the Sports Participation  Officer towards the end of each block to confirm your attendance for the next block of lessons, and inform you of any changes within the programme. 

We operate on 4 blocks per academic year, the dates are as follows: 

  • Monday 28 August -Sunday 8 October 2017
  • Monday 16 October -Sunday 17 December 2017
  • Monday 8 January –Sunday 1 April 2018
  • Monday 16 April –Sunday 24 June 2018

If you do not wish to continue within our Learn to Swim programme, please inform the Sports Participation Officer so that we may invite the next swimmer on our waiting list to join the programme.