Emotional development: Grading in the pool does genuinely reward good swimmers but for those children who are slower to grasp a skill or for those children who have sped through some steps but are stuck on another, grading can be something that they are emotionally not very well equipped to handle. This can in turn make them feel pressured or anxious in their swimming lessons.
Little Big swimmers celebrate their own and each others success through praise from their teachers, their parents and through congratulating each other, a valuable life skill as well as a lovely way to spend your swimming lesson.
1. Head position
2. Body position
3. Effective Kick
4. Effective Arms and hands
Some schools want you to be able to master one step before moving onto the next. The problem I see with this is that it can take some children years to master number one or two – to be working exclusively on these skills and adding no other skills I believe can be a little boring and a little demotivating as well as preventing the development of any kind of stroke which could be life saving.
We will watch your swimmer and gauge which skill needs some development and work on that in that particular lesson. Some children will ace their arms and legs but take some time to trust themselves to have a really great head and body position. Because we’ve spent the time working on the other skills when they do finally crack the code for head and body position their stroke begins to look fantastic almost overnight. In other words we put the ‘parts’ together at the same pace as your child is developing their ‘whole’ freestyle.
I’ll admit teaching this way is more complex than a graded system but I strongly believe that learning this way is the most rewarding for the swimmer in both emotional development, stroke development and water safety. It is awesome to see a swimmer’s face light up when they have aced something new. That look on their faces and the beautiful comfortable stroke our methods develop are why we don’t grade our swimmers.