We have gotten a lot of calls in the past few years from people planning to learn how to swim or looking for a swimming instructor for their kids.
Then we came to a point where we realised that most people don’t know what things should be taken into consideration before they sign up for a class.
It is not your fault, because that is the only thing you can compare.
Let us break down the things you need to look at before sign up for a swimming class.
Mistake 1: Looking For The Cheapest Swimming Class In Town
This is the most common mistake, when you’ve no idea what to look for, other than the pricing alone.
Swimming lessons are not a product, and the same goes for the quality of the lessons. The learning experience can be very different.
A swimming instructor has only so much time in a day, and the nature of the class has limited the duration to a short time. A normal guy can work 8 hours in an office environment, but a swimming instructor simply can’t work that way.
The freezing water, scorching sun, corrosive chlorine makes the teaching environment a harsh place to stay for extended period of time. A student might not feel that way if you only stay in the water for 60 mins a week. It is killing the instructor who stays in the water for over 5 hours a day.
So, the only way he can offer a low-priced class is to teach a larger class every hour. Imagine there are 10 students in a class; he can only spend 6 minutes on each student.
You might learn nothing because you simply don’t get enough attention and help needed to fix your problem.
Mistake 2: Hiring A Teacher That Can Swim Well, But Doesn’t Know How To Teach
Someone can swim well, but that doesn’t mean he can teach you how to swim. Over the years, we came across many parents or spouses who are good swimmers, who failed to teach others.
It is simply because many people lack patience to go through the basic things again, without scolding and mocking beginners.
A systematic teaching approach is the key to helping total beginners learn how to swim. The way the instructor delivers the lessons contributes to a significant portion of your learning experience.
A proper swimming lesson should be designed in a way that all the information is broken down into bite size and practical steps for the students to follow.
Inexperienced teachers will try to teach everything at the same time, and students have a hard time understanding what he needs to do.
Mistake 3: Part Time Swimming Instructor
Many people provide swimming lessons, while they are still a student studying in university.
It is good pocket money for the instructor, and you get a huge discount on lessons.
But in our experience working with swimming instructors who are still studying, it ends up not very good for the students.
Part-time instructors have other priorities over teaching you how to swim. Some students in university stop the class while the final exam is near, going back to the home town, long weekend, and etc.
Once students stop for more than a week, it is likely you will take a longer time in the next lesson to catch up again.
A freelance swimming instructor is more likely to charge you for every lesson, not a lump sum.
That gives you a good excuse to stop the lessons before you learn how to swim. Once you pay a lump sum, you are much more determined to stay until the end and make sure you can swim.
Mistake 4: Swimming Lessons Longer Than 60 Minutes
Learning how to swim is a sport, even though you’re really swimming long distance.
It is a tiring sport for most beginners.
Swimming involves complex muscle coordination, which needs a lot of work between your mind and body.
Imagine, writing using both of your hands and keep walking at the same time. You need time to adjust to the task.
Sometimes, we can see a student struggle in doing certain moves, but after taking a few days break and coming back, he can do it with no trouble.
I’m not saying that spending more time in the pool will not work. I’m just saying you need to arrange time between the class to learn on your own and practise.
Mistake 5: 1-to-1 Swimming Class
Yes, you get all 60 minutes’ attention from the instructor. But learning is not just about the time the instructor is staring at you.
For most adult learners, it is a stressful experience when the instructor is staring at you, while you’re still struggling to do something he wants you to do.
It is a confidence booster when you see others start from where you are, and they swim at the end of the day.
Learning with a group of friends helps to accelerate the learning. Sometimes, your best friend can explain better in your lingo. Exchanging tips with other students is an effective way to learn.
You have to pay a lot more for a 1-to-1 class. No good for your wallet.
Mistake 6: Using An Indoor Swimming Pool
Ladies love to choose indoor pools and stay away from the sun. I totally agree that swimming will make your skin darker.
However, indoor pools have a lower temperature, compared to outdoor as the water is not exposed to sunlight.
Shivering and restlessness make it difficult to relax, which is the key to swimming.
This has a greater impact on beginners, because they stop and do not swim enough to generate the body heat required to stay warm.
Mistake 7: Let Your Friends Teach You
I’m sure there are 1 or 2 friends around you who know how to swim well. But they aren’t ready to teach in most cases.
Knowing how to swim is 1 thing, knowing how to teach you is another thing.
The instructor must know how to break things down, how to give you actionable instructions to help you learn and make the learning process easier.
For example, “I want your body to float.” This is a vague and general instruction. A good training instructor will tell you which part of your body must move and do a specific action to make your body float.
Tell us the mistakes you make when choosing an instructor. Drop us an email; we will consider your input and update this article.