Swimming FAQs

Early Years Swimming

Do I have to wait for my baby to have their first immunisation before taking them swimming?

You can take your baby swimming from birth with your doctor/health visitors consent. NHS Guidelines advise you can take your baby swimming any time, even before they have had their immunisations. These immunisations are for diseases that can’t be carried by water, and the high quality of water in our pools means that the likelihood of transmitting any infection is extremely low.

What nappies should my baby wear in the water?

All babies must wear a swim nappy plus a costume over the top.  This is the best way to avoid ‘accidents’ in the pool. If you do notice anything, from any child, please just tell the teacher straight away.

Will I be in the water with my child and do I need to be able to swim?

You will be in the water with your child if they are booked into our Early Year’s Swim Baby, Swim Toddler or Swim Nippers classes.

If my baby is premature, can they join in?

Yes, but we would always advise that you check with your health visitor or GP before your first visit. If your baby was born prematurely, they may experience some delays in the development of their motor skills and muscle tone, which can in turn impact on other developmental milestones. Swimming can help them to catch-up on the stages of motor and sensory development, while the increased resistance in the water will help to build their strength and muscle tone.

Our Teachers

Are our swim teachers qualified to a high standard?

Edinburgh Leisure prides itself on delivering an excellent Learn to Swim Programme for all ages and stages. This programme is endorsed by Scottish Swimming, the national governing body. Every child in our programme will be taught by a fully qualified UKCC Level 2 Swim Teacher and children from 0 – 5 years old will be taught by UKCC Level 2 teachers who also have their nationally recognised Early Years qualification.

Is the swim teacher in the water with my child?

In line with Scottish Swimming’s recommendations, all our teachers lead classes from the side of the pool. From this position, our teachers can observe the safety of all participants, observe and analyse each pupil’s technical performance and are best placed to demonstrate and ensure every child gets sufficient time to practice. 

Booking in and leaving

How do I know which class my child should book in to?

Class descriptions are here. For customers who are new to the programme, have a look at the criteria for each class and book in accordingly. If you’d like to chat through the most appropriate starting point for your child please contact the venue swim team who will be able to advise you and make an assessment as required.

How does my child move through the lesson pathway?

Edinburgh Leisure offers a comprehensive pathway for all ages and abilities. As your child progresses and achieves the skills in each level you’ll be kept up do date with their achievements on the Coaching Home Portal. Once they have achieved the skills at their current level and the teacher is happy with their progress we’ll signpost your child to move to the next level.

How do I register and pay for lessons?

You will be asked to complete our coaching programme registration form and give us details of any medical conditions and additional support needs that we need to know about. Payment for our lessons is by monthly direct debit; our centre staff will support you to set this up when you book.

What happens if there is no space available?

At busy times, there might not be a space available in your preferred class. If this is the case you can go on our waiting list and will be contacted when a space becomes available.

How do I cancel my direct debit?

If you decide to leave our coaching programme then cancelling is straightforward. You can quickly stop the direct debit by contacting your bank to let them know. They’ll inform us of the cancellation and we’ll remove your child from the class they are in.

When are lessons on?

Our term dates are published on an annual basis. If we have your email address and consent to contact you, we’ll email these to you regularly. You can also find these on the Coaching Home Portal and the coaching pages of the Edinburgh Leisure website.

Before coming swimming

If my child is not well, should I still attend a lesson?

Please don’t take your child to their swim lesson if they aren’t feeling well.  If they have had vomiting or diarrhea please make sure they have been symptom clear for 48 hours before coming to the pool. Babies frequently get colds, and if it's just the snuffles then it's fine to bring them swimming. If they have a bad cough, temperature or are generally quite miserable with it, then it's probably best to stay at home. If you have any doubts, please check with your doctor first. If there are any relevant changes to your child’s medical details please make us aware.

Should I feed my child before a lesson?

Give your child at least an hour to digest foods prior to swimming lessons this greatly reduces the risk of your child being unwell in the water.

Does my child need to wear a swim cap and goggle during lessons?

Goggles are optional and many children prefer to wear them. We ask that you ensure goggles are the correct size and are fitted for your child before the lesson starts. Some pools may provide swim caps for your child’s lesson. Where they don’t, please ensure that long hair is tied back and clear of the face to ensure safety and enable good technique.

Do I need to bring money for a locker?

Please ensure all belonging are stored in lockers. All our pools have family changing facilities and our lockers are either a refundable £1 or 50p.

What should I do when I arrive at the venue?

Make your way straight to the changing area. We advise that participants are ready 5 minutes prior to the lesson starting. To support us, please ensure that your child goes to the toilet prior to the lesson. To ensure our exceptional standards of hygiene please ensure your child showers before going on to poolside. We understand that occasionally you may be running late and will support you when this happens, but ask you to bare in mind that this could negatively impact on other children’s lessons.

During the Swim Lesson

Can I watch my child during the swim lesson?

Once children have been dropped off we ask that you leave the changing area or poolside. This ensures the safety of everyone in the poolside area and provides the best learning environment for your children. Please feel free to watch from the *allocated viewing area according to the venue you are using. We ask that you do not take photos/ film children taking part in their lessons as this is against the Safeguarding Policy. *Queensferry High Recreation Centre has no allocated spectator’s area

Can I use your facilities during my child’s lesson, or leave the venue?

If your child is aged 9 years or below, please remain in the centre during your child’s lesson. For younger children, we ask that you remain in the venue during the lessons in case your child needs your support (eg needs to go to the toilet during the lesson). If your child is 10 years or older, you could leave the venue or use our facilities. You can enjoy discounted access to our pools (if public swimming is available) and gym. Just ask our reception team about ‘Why Wait’.

Coaching Home Portal

What is the Coaching Home Portal and why should I sign up?

We’ve listened to our customers who have told us they want more feedback on their children’s progress and introduced the Coaching Home Portal. This gives up to date information about the skills required in any class and the class participant’s progress towards achieving this. Once complete, you’ll then be able to move to the next level.

When will my child move up to the next class?

Children will be moved to the next class when they have achieved the skills required at their current level; this could be at any point during a term and doesn’t necessarily happen at the end of term.