Swim schools

Swim schools provide more specialised swimming instruction for all ages and are a great place to get your child swimming. In South Africa, all swimming instructors should have completed their training at a Swimming South Africa Accredited (SSA) Swim School or Centre.  Swimming South Africa is the governing body of aquatics in South Africa. 

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How to choose a swim school

It’s important to choose a swim school where you’re going to get good quality instruction for your kids, and also a place where they are going to feel at ease with the instructors. There’s a lot to think about, so here are a few of the top things to check out both online and when you visit them in person:

  • Accreditations – SSA accreditation is what you should look for.
  • Quality of instructors – not all teachers are equal and some schools have structured on-going teacher training programmes to make sure your children are getting the best.
  • Safety – schools should have documented safety procedures and all instructors should be qualified first-aiders (which is in anyway a prerequisite for instructors to get their SSA Accreditation).
  • Location – some schools have their own site, while others partner with local councils and gyms to use their facilities.
  • Range of courses for different age groups – not every school caters for infants and kids. If they do, the starting age is usually 6 months and older.
  • Water temperature – kids need warmer water than adults, otherwise they get cold and tire more easily. Often kiddie pools will be warmer than the main pool; look for a temperature around 30 °C for babies and infant swimming.
  • Venue – find a pool that’s close to home, is well maintained and has enough parking. Other things to consider are change room facilities, showers and even snacks for afterwards.
  • You can also try asking other parents who have kids at a swim school for their opinion.
  • Try out a school for 1 or 2 lessons and see how it goes. Schools will often offer a free orientation class so that your child’s swimming skills can be assessed – this is your chance to get a sneak peak at the teachers and facilities. 

Find a South African swim school:

For more information see Learn to swim or Parenting 

 
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