How warm is the water?
Most of our pools are heated to at least 30°C – so perfect for babies who are older than 3 months, or weigh more than 12lbs, and a lovely warm water experience for both of you.
For babies who are under 3 months old, or who weigh less than 12lbs, the temperature should be at least 32°C, so we’d always recommend one of our extra-toasty hydrotherapy pools.
What age can my baby start swimming?
Babies can generally start at Baby Swimmers as soon as you and baby are ready and happy to do so. If your baby was premature, please check with your doctor first.
Does my baby need immunisations before swimming?
It is not necessary for your baby to have had all their vaccinations before starting swimming (here’s a link to the NHS guidelines
). However if you’ve any doubts or concerns, please discuss them further with your doctor or health visitor.
When do classes run?
Baby Swimmers classes
run over 3 terms throughout the year in line with the school terms in your area.
How long do lessons last, and how much do they cost?
Each session lasts 25 - 30 minutes, and can be booked termly and paid in advance at a cost of £10.00 per class.
After attending your first term, if you are unable to commit to a full term, you can pay our ad hoc rate of £12 per class, however these classes must be consecutive and specified when rebooking.
Do you offer any discounts?
We offer a 10% discount for a group booking of 5 or more babies for the first term only. This discount cannot be used in conjunction with any other offer.
We also offer a sibling discount of 5% per child when you have 2 children or more attending our classes.
Do you run a ‘recommend a friend’ scheme?
If you already attend Baby Swimmers classes and recommend a friend, once they sign up for the course we’ll give you 1 class credit for the following term. There is no limit to the number of friends you can recommend – so the more friends you recommend, the more free classes you get!
What happens if I need to miss a class?
If you are unable to attend for any reason, your payment is non-refundable, non-transferable and cannot be carried over to a new term.
How does rebooking work?
We run an automatic rebooking system, which means your place will be automatically rebooked for the new term and payment taken on a specified date, unless an email or phone call is received within the required time to confirm you no longer require a place (normally 3 weeks before the end of each term).
Can I join part way through a term?
You can start swimming with Baby Swimmers at any point in the term. You will still pay for the full block for your first term, and any of the missed classes will be carried forward to the following term. Alternatively, you can attend classes twice per week to catch up with any of the classes you’ve missed.
Where do I park?
Please check the venue information for the class you are attending for parking details.
What do I need to bring to my lesson?
NAPPIES: We operate a double nappy system at our pools, which means a paper or reusable swim nappy with either a Happy Nappy or velcro swim nappy on top. This is to help guard against any accidents which may contaminate the pool. Please have a look at our online shop [LINK TO SHOP]. Extra disposable nappies can be purchased at your lesson at a cost of £1.00 each.
CHANGING MATS: Please bring a changing mat with you (roll-up ones are good when you’re on the move), and always change your baby on the floor for their safety.
TOWELS: One for you, one for baby.
WETSUIT: If your baby needs a bit of extra warmth.
HAT: To keep your baby nice & warm on their way home.
And don’t forget your own swimsuit, too!
Where do I change my baby?
As most of the pools we use are within schools and leisure clubs, the changing facilities may be limited and quite small and usually without changing tables. Hopefully the enjoyment of the classes and warm pools will make up for the changing facilities!
For safety, please change your baby on a changing mat on the floor. Bear in mind that there is limited space for parents coming into the changing rooms after you, so please use the lockers where they’re provided. You will need £5 deposit for your key if you swim at The Forum, and £1 at other venues.
Please note there are no lockers at any of the school pools, so please do not bring any valuables with you.
When should I feed my child?
Please leave at least one hour between feeding your baby and their swimming lesson, and 2 hours if your little one is eating solids.
What if my baby is ill?
If your baby is unwell and suffering from a severe cold, chest infection, ear infection, vomiting or diarrhoea, please do not bring them swimming.
Please also make sure that your little one has been completely clear of all sickness or diarrhoea symptoms for at least 72 hours before you come swimming again.
If you are unsure as to whether they are well enough to swim, please consult your doctor.
Do you use buoyancy aids?
Our main aim is for your baby or toddler to learn to feel their natural buoyancy, so buoyancy aids are generally not used in our lessons.
I have an older child who can’t swim, will you teach them?
Yes of course! We’re always happy to teach children to swim – adults too! - whatever their age, ability or previous experience.
Will my baby go underwater?
Swimming underwater encourages free movement and confidence in the water from a very early age. Furthermore, your baby won’t have the physical strength to support their own body weight until they’re about 3 years old, which is when they’ll be able to start swimming on the surface. Getting to this level can be attained through steady progression, which starts with short dips under the water and goes through to longer consecutive underwater swims.
Do I have to go underwater?
It’s fabulous when you get the chance to sit on the bottom of the pool and see your baby swim to you! However we recognise that not everyone is confident or happy to go under the water, so the decision is always yours.
Can I take photos of my child in their swimming lesson?
Photography is not allowed during normal swimming lessons for child protection purposes, so please keep your phone safely in your bag or locker during your lesson.
We do however run regular photo shoots
where you can get photos of your child both splashing about on the surface, and swimming underwater.
Can my child get any swimming awards?
Baby Swimmers uses Starfish, the STA’s official water safety programme for babies.
There are 6 Starfish awards throughout the series, and the aim is to complete one award per term. After your child has completed each award, they’ll will receive a sticker for their achievement booklet, and you’ll also be able to buy a badge and certificate if you wish.
It will generally take up to 2 years to achieve all 6 awards, after which your baby or toddler will progress to the more advanced Stanley Awards Programme, which is suitable for children from 2 years old.
Older and more advanced swimmers will then work towards more advanced awards, including Lifesaving.
You can read more about the different awards here