Ability Groups

To ensure that swimmers are learning alongside other swimmers of similar ability, our group lessons are delivered in four ability groups.

When your child enrolls with us, the appropriate ability group is determined using our ability matrix. Lessons within all ability groups last for 30 minutes. 

The four ability groups within the Becky Adlington's SwimStars programme are:

Foundation - (Awards covered: Foundation 1-4)

This course is designed for children aged 3+ years who are unable to swim without support or buoyancy aids. The aim is to develop water confidence, kicking and flotation skills. They will use arm discs and woggles to assist swimmers' development and for safety.

Children will only progress up to the Early Swimmer group once they can confidently put their face in the water, float independently on front & back, streamline confidently and kick effectively for 5 metres on front & back unaided.

Early Swimmer - (Awards covered: Early Swimmer 1-4)

This course is designed for children who are confident in the water and are able to swim 5 meter distances independently without the use of floatation aids. The aim is to develop front & back crawl strokes, introducing breathing skills and focussing on developing a relaxed and streamlined body position.
Children will progress to half-length improver once they can perform 25 metre swims on their front and back unaided.

Improver - (Awards covered: Improver 1-6)

The improver course is designed for children capable of consistently swimming 25 metre distances on front & back crawl (with breathing skills, over-arm recovery and a streamlined body position). Children must also have an understanding of breastroke leg kick and must be confident in deeper water and maintain their skills regardless of depth (up to 1.5m deep). The course aims to develop stamina and techniques relating to all of the four strokes, with specific focus on leg kick and co-ordination of strokes.

Advanced - (Awards covered: Advanced 1-3)

The course aims to develop endurance, whilst incorporating competitive skills working to achieve the higher stage awards of the Learn to Swim Framework. 

*Please note these are the guidelines of the ability groups, and it is down to the teacher to advise if they are in the correct group or when your child is ready to move up.