Swimming (ASA Stages 1 - 10)(30 Posts)
Both dcs (4 and 6) have recently stated swim lessons.
Stages 1-7 seem to be the learn to swim part, with Stages 8-10 more specialising in strokes. So would you say they're competent swimmers by Stage 7 and the rest is optional i.e. for those who wish to take it up as a sport rather than just as a life skill?
Assuming they go once a week, (with the odd family swim on top) how long would you expect it to take, for an average child to progress to Stage 7, or could could it go on for years to come?
Ds1 (11) and ds2 (8) started lessons just before Christmas 2011, so have been swimming for one term shy of two years.
Ds1 is now Level 6 and ds2 is level 5. They were assessed before starting, and ds1 started at level 3 (he could float and swim breast strokes already), and ds2 at level 1. Ds1s progress have been faster, but ds2s strokes are more refined.
It depends how confident they are in the water to begin with and what age they starting from. The average age for level 7 at DDs swimming classes is about 8 or 9. I found that how quick they move up also varies between teachers and pools. DD has friends who to moved up levels really quick while swimming widths in a shallow pool as opposed to lengths of a 25m pool.
Ps, I think they make much faster progress if you take them for regular practise, not just the odd family swim, when they just play.
I think going in the deep pool can be really helpful for learners. Once you are past the initial stages, it does kids no favours to be able to touch the bottom, but in our pool they only move into the big pool at level 5.
I think my kids have made quite steady progress.. Level 5 in 2 years. I think if they had had individual lessons, or consistently good teaching, they would have progressed faster, but I feel they are both doing well, and having the lessons in the local pool is a massive advantage as I don't have a car.
DD1 (5.10) has just passed level 3. It's been a very long journey (she was water phobic for a start and the classes were very badly run for a while. Things are millions times better now) and it's taking a long time to progress (or so it seems from this thread!). Having said that, she seems to be picking up new stuff quite quickly and crucially, is confident now. She's one of two 5-year-olds in a class of 7/8 year-olds. Even though she's just got level 3, they've been doing level 4 stuff in lessons to, and their teacher pushes them: for level 3 they need to swim say 5m of a certain stroke or whatever: teacher got them to jump in at the deep end of the deep pool and see how far they got!
The teachers at this pool in general seem very keen on solid technique, so yes, it takes a while to do a badge, but by the time they do, they actually have the skill, rather than just doing enough for the badge, iykwim.
Mine have done most of their stages as intensive one week courses during the holidays. Which means that they got quite a bit of practise in in between holidays as they swim weekly with school.
DS1 skipped Stage 3 as although that was technically the next level the teacher decided he was ready for Stage 4. It took him two weeks to pass Stage 4 though.
However the stages involve more than just distance, they have to tick off all of the different skills. Both DS1 and DS2 could swim 25m before they passed Stage 2, DD is now on Stage 4 and can only swim 10m confidently. She is better at the skills
and actually listening to instructions though.
Yes, we'll I am anyway. The asa ones I think.
Are you lot all talking about the kellogs national plan for swimming stages?
Ds1 is in stage 4 and is doing one more term I this group then moving up, he will have done 3 terms at this level. He was borderline for moving up this time but just needs to get his arms and legs in time with butterfly.
She mainly kept him back as he is still only 4. She uses slightly different criteria between stages 3-5 for the older ones and the younger ones. she said he has already met quite a few of the criteria for 5.
I will keep sending My boys throughout primary school as I want them to be strong swimmers and do their lifesavers awards. I am scared of the water, I can swim and I don't show them any fear. I want them to stand a chance if they ever fall in water. I also think its a brilliant way to stay fit without too much impact on growing joints.
I'm surprised she can find anyone to compete with at 7, local clubs don't have any events for under 8s.
Thinking that mine have managed, starting lessons at 5.5yo, to progress about 1 stage/9 months on average. but huge variation, so fast thru stages 1-3, very slow thru stages 4-6, fast progression again from stage 7+.
My neice has passed stage 8 at the age of seven, but she is an exceptionally gifted swimmer and swims competitively.
I think that the level that a child has to be at depends on the swimming pool.
Is it possible to skip a stage? Ds2 has done stage 1 but now can swim about 20 metres front and back. Do they have to go through each one? I've no idea what else is involved other than distance.
It's not unusal to surger forward and then plateau. DD started swimming classes just before she was 4. She completed level 10 at 6 years. Some terms she completed up to 4 levels some terms none. Sadly she had no desire to swim competitively (though she could) so the pool is only un now.
It's taken my DTDs (7.1) 2 full terms to do stage 5.
Same subject but different slant... My Dniece is 7.10 & passed stage 9 at the end of the Summer term. She's also done her 1500m badge. My Dsis is a bit meh about it as Dniece has always been a strong swimmer. I think it's pretty impressive though and that, given how keen Dniece is, Dsis should look for a proper swimming club for her. Am I just being a proud auntie or is stage 9 & 1500m impressive for a 7yr old?
Most kids here take longer than one term to pass each level. Ds, age 6, is about to enter his 4th term at level 3. This is not that uncommon. The standards they expect are very high and they don't move them on until they are 100%.
Chauffer -they do do the ducking awards as part of the group and she has some of those but pre school 2 is equivalent to stage 2 and pre school 3 to stage 3, ie they only move up into stage 3 when they can swim 5 meters front and back. Come September she will go into school age stage 2 unless she suddenly learns to swim!!
I should add that DD2 is a fearless determined character and DD1s 7ish for 400m is more realistic than DD2s 6.
This all a very long wondered way of saying expect to she'll out for lessons until end of Y2, Y3 if they enjoy it.
Short story -
Yes, L7 plus 400 m badge = competent in my book.
That's what DD2 had when I let her loose on her own age 7 at Centre parks. (She'd done adult shoots and the rapids at 5)
DD1 got her 400 m badge at 6.11 and Level 8 at 7.2
(She got level 7 a year later the older classes chopped and changed a lot and the admin went a bit to pot]
She has silver too, probably 8/9 she's lot the certificate.
DD2 got her 400 m badge at 6.1 and level 7 just before her 7th birthday and her bronze just after.
They both gave up around 9 as gold is was more lenths than they could do in a lesson (paying for another years lessons just so they grew taller wasn't worth it).
Also all their friends were giving up or moving on to swimming club. Sadly our local club is really serious, several times a week no room for fun.
Dd(9) is currently doing her stage 10. It's split up into bronze, silver and gold where we are and finally honours (which dd is doing now). I think the first few stages were quite fast as I recall, but then things slowed down for us with the
wretched butterfly which dd just didn't have the strength in her arms to do for ages!
She started swimming when she was 5 BTW... She is the youngest in her group, our swimming pool wont move them until they're ready so the classes are quite mixed up age wise. I think swimming outside lessons is definitely worth it if you want your dc to progress quickly.
Twas - my dd did the Duckling awards as a preschooler and didn't start the Stages until she was in Reception. They are both ASA awards. May be worth asking your teacher about those as they are more set up for the littler ones with the idea being they then don't have to stay in Stage 1/2 for long as they've covered it in Ducklings.
Agree with sugar - one level per term is way above normal progression! Assuming the levels are the same of course - and I think there are several different types.
Mine (5 and 7) took 2 terms for Stage 1 and will probably need a 2nd term for stage 2 at least. (possibly longer for DS1 who is still not remotely happy about attempting things without a buoyancy aid). Mine aren't the youngest in their class, and DS1 will be in Year 3 in September. I think the PP who said their child was level 8 in yr 3 is somewhat of an exception - unless they are talking about a different set of levels... I've told mine they can stop having lessons when they get to stage 7 <groaning at the thought of years of swimming lessons to come>
Errm, it depends how fast they learn!
One of mine still couldn't swim at all in year 3 despite years of lessons. Another one could float from the first lesson, which kind of helps.
My daughter seems to have been stuck in stage 2 for a year, just won't let go of the woggle. Water confident and enjoying it though. It will depend a bit on age too. My daughter is pre school. Presumably 'd they start later they whizz through the first two stages.
I'm considering some one to one to get her over the hump but don't know whether to or leave it.
Interesting about the terms -ours is continuous so maybe less incentive to move them on, although they tend to only move when they're ready.
My dd is 6 and did stage 3 at the end of Reception and then Stage 4 at Easter. Her swimming teacher doesn't like to race them through the stages and won't let them do Stage 5 until next year. You may want to check your teachers policy if you want them to do one a term.
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