Learn to Swim Overview

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Pathway & Timetable





Maidstone Swimming Club delivers a structured Learn to Swim programme. Lessons are held during term-time, with optional intensive courses through the summer break, run by experienced and qualified teaching/coaching staff. Our programme is aimed at swimmers who are aged between 4 and 10 years old, and caters for complete beginners through to pre-competition swimmers.

Our programme is run by fully qualified swimming teachers. All our teachers give their time to the club on a voluntary basis, and as a result, we do not have a formal feedback system for parents/guardians (meetings or written reports).

Lessons are planned and assessed following the Swim England National Plan for Teaching of Swimming (NPTS) Stages 1 to 10

Many of our current competitive swimmers have progressed through this programme in the club. We provide a high standard of teaching throughout, in order that your son or daughter progresses throughout each stage of the plan.

Naturally, it is our aim to make the whole process of learning to swim as fun and enjoyable as possible. Included in the programme is water confidence and good technical stroke understanding.

Swimmers are continuously assessed, with recognition given as they reach the required standard.


If you are interested in your child joining our Learn to Swim programme, please provide the following information when you contact us. We hold regular trial nights and further details can be found by selecting the link below.

We take children from the age of 4 in Stage 1. We are happy to take children’s details in advance of their 4th birthday so that they can start soon after.

We will then be able to provide you with accurate information regarding potential waiting lists and session times.

  • Full name
  • Date of birth
  • Has your child completed any formal Learn to Swim lessons?
  • If so, what is the highest stage that they have completed?

Progression & Development

Following progression through the different stages and having attained all the awards, we always encourage swimmers to continue and progress into our competitive arm of the club.

Some swimmers will progress through Learn to Swim at a regular rate, but many will spend a longer or shorter time at various stages. This is entirely normal and will not hinder their development into competitive swimmers at an older age.



Should you have any questions about your child’s swimming development or generally about how Learn to Swim works then please feel free to talk to either your specific teacher or any Learn to Swim teacher after the sessions finish.

We will answer your queries as best we can, as time permits. On a Friday, in particular, you will normally find a Learn to Swim teacher close to the Club Desk. If not, someone at the desk should be able to point you in the right direction or locate a teacher.

The message therefore is – don’t hesitate to ask! If you have a query don’t worry about catching a teacher for an explanation. We are just as keen to keep a close understanding and communication with parents.



In line with that sentiment, here is some feedback for parents/guardians from the teachers regarding kit.

We expect all swimmers to arrive in correct attire and on time ready for each session. All teaching equipment is provided by the club.

  • Goggles. It is obviously a disruption to the lessons if swimmers are struggling with their goggles. If parents/guardians could check that their child’s goggles fit and are properly fastened then it will help us and them to concentrate on the teaching.
  • Boys Swim Trunks. Whilst we don’t insist on a certain type of trunks, parents/guardians should be aware that large and/or baggy surf style shorts have a dragging effect which makes it harder for the swimmer to achieve good body position and stroke development and can therefore slow a swimmer’s progression.
  • Hats. It is a good idea for anyone with long hair (that will get across the face) to wear a swimming hat. This again avoids distraction to the swimmer during lessons and can also be a safety issue.


50m Time Trials Series

Swimmers from Learn to Swim Stage 5 are expected to take part in these trials. They should try all strokes except Butterfly, although please do check with your coach or teacher beforehand.

If swimmers are nervous, please ask them to talk to their teacher for advice. We do understand that this will be the first ever ‘racing’ for many of our younger swimmers and it can be quite daunting. Please ensure they ‘give it a go’ as it is vital for the club to properly gauge progression.


Club Championships

Our championships are held annually. For swimmers in our Learn to Swim programme, we hope that it is a gentle venture into the world of competitive swimming.

These championships are open to all our members, but are not appropriate for the earlier stages of the Learn to Swim programme. All Learn to Swim swimmers from Stage 5 may enter. Guidance on entries will be provided in the Information Pack.