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Frequently Asked Questions

Q. How quickly will my child progress?

A . No two pupils are the same. At Cossum Swim School, we use a multi stroke technique. This means that the pupils have a chance to learn all the different strokes. Some pupils will excel at a front crawl, others at breaststroke, whilst others may swim better on the back. Practice in between lessons will help a lot. If a child needs more practice, why not think of coming an hour before or after lessons and booking the pool at Share. Even bath time can be useful in getting your child to splash water over the face. You don’t have to be a swimming teacher to help.

Q. How can I get the most from the lessons?

A. When teaching any new skill, a teacher will always spend the first few minutes of the lesson to recap on previous sessions and to advise pupils of what and why they are learning today’s skill. i.e. “Today, we are going to concentrate on learning how to regain feet from the back. This will be useful as next week be we be learning backstroke. “If your child is late, they will not know the aim of the lesson.

Arriving late -This may result in

  • Bad behaviour due to disinterest. ( Because the pupil didn’t find out the purpose of today’s lesson)

  • The child may be stressed. The pupil has had no chance to do a warm-up.

  • We do realise that things don’t always go to plan, but please try to arrive at the poolside on time. Pupils should have gone to the toilet, hats and goggles correctly fitted. Try to practice removing and fitting goggles with the younger pupils to save time.

Q. How do I check a child’s progress?

A. Children are being constantly monitored by their teacher. Updates, Badges & Certificates are available at regular intervals throughout the term.  You can then go to our website  
And check out the STA award scheme. This is a series of comprehensive/ linked and progressive awards are designed to accompany “learn to swim” and water safety programmes. 


Q. What happens if there are different ability levels in the class?

A. All pupils progress at different rates. For instance, your child may appear to be much better at front crawl than the others in the group but maybe the weakest when it comes to going on the back
Great care has been taken to ensure that your child is given the best possible learning environment. Grouping is undertaken within the class to give more able pupils more challenging tasks than the less able pupil. However, pushing the less able pupils too fast may result in them becoming disheartened and feeling inadequate.  Although we try to ensure that all children are approximately the same level, at times, there may be some variation in ability levels.
All Cossum swim teachers are trained to the highest levels and can deal with this eventuality. 


Q. Why are the pupils spending so much time using floats?

A. The term floats is a popular misconception. The pupils are practising with kickboards. These are not floatation aids. Instead, they are used to isolate body areas, strengthen and improve the leg/arm action of the pupil. 
For example, one of the main causes for pupils not being able to breathe correctly is that their legs are sinking.
The use of kickboards allows part practices for improvers and competent swimmers alike. Many world class swimmers spend many hours each week practising with kickboards.

Q. Why is my child wearing armbands?

A.  At Cossum swim schools, our teachers may, from time to time, use arm rings instead of armbands.  This should not be seen as a retrograde step. Floatation aids help to give your child a chance to practice strokes in comfort and safety. Buoyancy aids also help to develop water confidence. Even some swimmers may find the use of buoyancy aids to be beneficial when used correctly.

Q. Are pupils moved up a group as they progress

A. Class times usually remain the same, although your teacher may recommend moving your child from time to time. This usually doesn’t happen that often and you can, of course, opt to stay, but if your teacher recommends moving, it is done solely for the benefit of the pupil, and we strongly recommend that you take any advice offered.

Q. / Re enrolling/ How do I retain my place for the next course?

Courses are usually run in 8-week blocks.  On week 6 of each course, you will be notified by text and payments are then taken automatically from your account.
If you are not receiving text messages, contact us immediately so we can check your mobile number.

I hope you found this useful.


Enjoy and safe swimming.

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