Learn to Swim Programme returns to Amman Valley, Carmarthen, Llandovery and Llanelli Leisure Centres
Starting from 17 May
We are pleased to announce that our Learn to Swim Programme will be re-starting for group swimming lessons in a phased approach at Amman Valley, Carmarthen, Llandovery and Llanelli Leisure Centres from Monday 17th May.
Lessons will follow similar pattern as previously with 30-minute lessons starting at 4.00pm-6.00pm each weekday. We will be phasing each of the learn to swim levels (splash / wave) back week by week for the safety of all swimmers and staff.
It’s been a long time since we’ve seen you and we’ve missed you all and all of us are looking forward to welcoming you back to our centres again.
This timeline will look like this;
- Wave 4, 5, 6 and 7 (across all centres)
- Splash 1 and 2 (not including Carmarthen, coming soon)
- Bubbles (not including Carmarthen, coming soon)
- Adult learn to swim (across all centres)
- Junior and Senior Actif / Tri Actif (formerly known as FAST –Llanelli and Amman Valley only)
- Wave 3 (across all centres)
- Wave 1 (Carmarthen only)
- Wave 2 (across all centres)
- Wave 1 (Amman Valley, Llanelli and Llandovery)
- Splash 6 (across all centres)
- Splash 3, 4 and 5 (across all centres)
We know that it is unlikely you can recall which class your child was in prior to lockdown – but don’t worry we will have that information to hand to help place your child in the correct class.
We know and understand that children may have lost some confidence, fitness, and stamina during this long absence away from the water and it is possible that teachers will place buoyancy aids on your child initially to be sure they are safe and coping in the lesson.
Our lessons will look a little different – reduced number of children per class and our teachers will teach exclusively from the poolside, they will not be allowed to be in the water with the class at any time. Teachers will also not be able to help with swimming caps or goggles, so please help your child to put these on themselves by practising at home!
An extensive list of Swimming lessons FAQ’s can be seen below.
Interested in booking?
To book a lesson please email your local centre:
Learn to Swim Programme - New Customers
Do you have a child/ren interested in joining the Learn to Swim Programme as a new customer? Please email our swimming coordinators to express your interest and stating the ability levels of your child – have they had lessons before and if so what level did they achieve?
The coordinators will monitor numbers and stay in communication with potential new customers.
Information for Parents
We would like to assure you that we have followed the Welsh Government approved guidance issued by Swim Wales, the National Governing Body for swimming in Wales so that we are sure of welcoming you back to a safe environment for all users and staff.
Our team of swimming teachers are ready to resume their duties and have received training to ensure a safe Covid-19 environment and experience for you and your child. Obviously, you will see some changes which will include the introduction of safe social distancing measures, smaller classes, timing of lessons and new changing room procedures.
- Each child attending swimming lessons must be accompanied by a maximum of one adult only, no siblings please. No spectating area will be available to watch lessons, parents are encouraged to wait for their child in their cars in the car park. Parents are to remain on site in case of need during the lesson, in which case they will be contacted by telephone.
- Children should arrive ‘beach-ready’ with their swimming costume already on, under their clothing – changing rooms will be available after the swimming lesson, only. It might be an idea for your child to wear clothing that is easy for them to get out of. Please also ensure your child uses the toilet before leaving home to reduce the need during the lesson. Showers will not be available. Sanitised boxes for your child’s clothing will be provided and these can be left on poolside and collected once the lesson has concluded and taken to the changing room area. Please return these to centre staff for sanitising for the next group.
- Our swimming lesson co-ordinators will meet you at reception and will guide you and your child through the building and onto poolside, they will be looking out for you as you enter the building. Please do not arrive at the leisure centre too early as we will wish to minimise the number of people in the building at any one time. When in the leisure centre you will be required to wear a face-covering/mask and maintain a two-metre distance in accordance with Welsh Government guidance. There will be a one-way direction of travel within the leisure centre and you should follow the direction signs or follow the instructions of staff. Parents will not be allowed on poolside at any time.
- Please note that toilets will be available for use. It would be very helpful if parents could ensure their child has used the bathroom prior to leaving home. Showers will not be available for use at any time.
- Our swimming teachers and assistants will be teaching and assisting from poolside, there will be no assistants in the water at any time. Given that it is likely to be some months since children last took part in any type of swimming lesson it is expected to see some regression in fitness and technical skill levels. It is possible that your child might be fitted with fixed buoyancy aids to ensure initial safety of all participants and these will be removed when the teacher deems it safe to do so. The safety and well-being of each participant will be our main objective at all times.
- All equipment required for the lesson will be sanitised in between lessons and will be allocated to each child for their exclusive use during their lesson.
- Once dressed your child will follow the one-way system through the centre to the exit point where you can meet them.
FAQ's Swimming Lessons
Why choose Carmarthenshire County Council Swimming lessons?
Why choose Carmarthenshire County Council Swimming lessons?
- Lessons are available up to 48 weeks of the year and up to 7 days a week, with a break over the Christmas and Easter period.
- Lessons available for participants from 4 months old.
- Participants are assessed regularly and moved up as soon as they are ready for the next stage.
- Qualified and DBS checked teachers and assistant teachers.
- Badges and certificates are available to show progression
- Lessons available at our four centres.
Why should my child return now?
Swimming is an essential lifesaving life skill and drowning is still one of the most common causes in accidental death in children. As well as being an important life skill, swimming is also one of the most healthy and fun activities, improving strength, stamina, flexibility and posture - keeping your child active and happy at the same time.
Swimming has a long participation pathway and can start at a very young age (from as young as five months) and continue through all life stages. Being able to swim opens up lots of other water-based activities such as surfing; kayaking; sailing and triathlon and increasing the opportunities for participation in physical activity, staying fit and healthy and enjoying the health benefits that arise from being physically fit and active.
Why are pupils being reassessed?
Children have missed twelve months’ worth of lessons over the past year and techniques and skills in the pool will have regressed during this period. Our swimming teacher teams will be completing initial assessments to ensure that we can support and develop the skills which need the most focus during the first 4-6 weeks of lessons. All pupils will be assessed against their progress based upon their ability to demonstrate water confidence and achievements against the ability group criteria.
How long do I need to arrive before the start time of lessons?
All customers should arrive 10 minutes before the start time of their lesson in the centre specific Swimming Lesson Waiting Zone. Centre staff will be on hand for support during the first few weeks to show where this area is and explain the customer journey process.
What does ‘pool ready’ mean?
We ask that all children arrive to the centre with their swimwear underneath clothing such as a tracksuit or onesie (something easy to remove). Once customers are at the Swimming Lesson Drop Off Zone, we will ask all children to ensure they have their swimsuit or trunks, swimming cap and goggles. If for any reason you cannot get your child pool ready before getting to the centre we will have limited areas for them to change.
Where do parents and/or guardians spectate?
There will be no opportunity to spectate during the swimming lesson. Parents are expected to remain in their car in the car park and meet their child at the exit point once the lesson has concluded.
Do I have to wear a face covering in the building?
In line with Government regulations we require that all aged 11+ wear a face mask/covering while in the building.
Why do we have limited time in the changing rooms?
All children will have access to changing rooms after lessons. We ask that all customers keep to a 10-minute allocation to ensure we have time to keep these areas clean and keep our lessons running on time.
What if we are late?
The cut off time for all swimming lessons is the start time of the lesson; this is why we ask all customers to arrive 10 minutes before the start time. Centre staff will try to accommodate customers who are late due to circumstances out of their control but this will be dependent upon lesson capacities and the other activities that may be taking place at the centre at the same time.
What if I have more than one child in different lessons, what do I do?
Our swimming lesson programme model is designed around our customers and our need to maintain a clean environment for all. You can request to move your children to times that are more convenient for you.
Who can I speak to if I have any questions?
Centre staff will be able to direct you to our Learn to Swim Co-ordinator who will be to answer any questions you may have about our new lessons. If you have any questions before your lesson, please complete the contact us form on our website.
Why are some swimming lessons coming back but not others?
Creating Covid-secure swimming lessons is a complex and challenging task. We want to make sure that we get the process right for the majority of our customers first before we bring back more of our swimming lesson programme. We are constantly reviewing our programming and will keep all customers updated on when additional lessons will be brought back.
What qualifications do the swimming teachers hold?
All our swimming teachers hold the National Governing Body recommended qualifications and also hold an enhanced DBS (The Disclosure and Barring Service) check. In addition, our teachers all undergo Safeguarding training.
Why are swimming teachers and assistant teachers not teaching from the water?
We are following industry guidance to protect our staff and customers from the risk of Covid-19 transmission. We have ensured that additional equipment is available to support children who are non-swimmers or swimming out of their depth. Our Swimming Teachers are trained to deliver all abilities from poolside. As Government guidance is revised, we will review our programme which may allow our assistant teachers to assist from within the water.
What are the lesson ratios?
The average ratio will be 1 Swimming Teacher to x pupils.
When will assessments take place?
Progress will be continuously monitored and tracked against what children are learning each week by the Swimming Teacher. The focus during the first 4-6 weeks of lessons restarting is to ensure all children re-learn the basic skills to feel safe and confident in the new normal for swimming lessons. During the first 4-6 weeks, Swimming Teachers will ensure that pupils are working towards the correct awards and are in the correct class for their ability.
What are the new cleaning measures in place for Swimming Lessons?
For your safety the following has been provided:
- Sanitisation stations on entry
- Lesson equipment minimised and cleaned in chlorinated water between classes
- Changing facilities locked and cleaned every 15 minutes
- Increased cleaning of touch points
What are the new safe measures in place for swimming lessons?
Amongst our safety measures for swimming lessons, below are key highlights:
- We are restricting the use of our pools during lessons to Learn to Swim and swimming club users only
- We are limiting the number of classes and participants in each pool at any one time
- We are removing the use of shared equipment during a swimming lesson
- We are limiting changing spaces and introducing changing windows of 15 minutes
What is the format of Carmarthenshire CC Actif swimming lessons during Covid-19?
We will ensure:
- Our Swimming Lessons will continue to operate for 30 minutes
- A water safety briefing will be given by our teachers at the start of every lesson for the first four weeks to ensure swimmer safety.
- Our teachers focus on refreshing swimmers Core Aquatic Skills during lessons as this provides the foundations on which to build swimmer progress
- Equipment will be issued per swimmer for the duration of the lesson and there will be no shared equipment during the lesson.
Will I be able to use the changing rooms before and after lessons?
We are encouraging all swimmers to arrive “Beach” or “Pool” ready with swimming costumes on under clothing before Swimming Lessons as changing rooms will not be available before lessons. Swimmers are encouraged to change on poolside prior to their lesson. Changing rooms will however be available following lessons without the use of showers and lockers, for a maximum of 15 minutes from your lesson finishing time.
Is it feasible to teach lower stages in deep water to make more use of pool space to allow for social distancing?
Yes, our full programme has been reviewed and lessons allocated appropriate locations in the pool to allow a safe and enjoyable lesson. Our Teachers have also undertaken pre-opening training days to cover teaching in different pool locations and utilising equipment that can be used to support swimmers.
Why is my child wearing arm bands?
Your child’s safety is our priority and they have been away from our pools for a significant amount of time where their ability may have regressed.
Your lesson may have also changed pool or location and arm bands or suitable aids may be utilised by your teacher to ensure your child is safe once they return to the water, particularly in the first few weeks where our water safety briefings will also be given as part of returning to lessons.
Why are there different bather loads for different activities?
Maximum bather occupancy cannot be determined by just using a single number and applying that to all lessons.
The activity being undertaken has an effect on how you control distance and time, therefore a minimum of 6 m2 would be in a setting where you can control distance and limit the time at which participants come close.
Are you sure that cleaning equipment in pool water is sufficient?
Research has been carried out on this subject and The Pool Water Treatment Advisory Group have published the cleaning parameters.
Additionally, in between sessions we are submerging equipment in chlorinated water to limit the risk of transmission. This will not guarantee any virus if present will be eliminated. We are also removing shared equipment to further minimise risk of transmission.
Can I shower at the pool?
Our showers will not be available for use, however showering before you swim is a vital contribution to ensuring the free chlorine in the pool water is available for disinfection of SARS-CoV-2 (rather than being used to clean dirt off swimmers). We are encouraging swimmers to shower at home before arriving at the pool and at home after your swim.
Can I use lockers at the pool?
Lockers will not be available for use, however please arrive “Pool ready” and bring a bag for your individual changing station on poolside.
What does “beach style” mean. Do I have to drive home in my wet stuff?
What we mean by “beach style turn up and swim” is that we ask you to arrive at the pool already wearing your swimming costumes underneath your clothes and having showered at home. We are encouraging swimmers to do this to minimise the time spent in changing areas. Similarly, we are encouraging swimmers to shower at home after their swim, again to minimise the time spent in the changing areas after a swim.
However, changing facilities will still be available for swimmers post swim for a change.
Should people with health conditions/disabilities return to the pool?
Absolutely, we know that swimming is a fantastic activity for people with a range of health conditions / disabilities. However, those in the high risk and moderate risk groups should consider the latest government advice before returning to the pool.
People categorised as “high risk” or who have concerns may wish to consult with their medical practitioner before returning to the water.
Can people who are shielding return to swimming?
People who are shielding should follow the latest government guidance.