Frequently Asked Questions

The frequently asked questions are set up specifically for this section of the website and comes from questions that have been asked of us in the past. If you can’t find the answer to your question below – please submit it via the form at the bottom of the page and will we reply to it directly and add your question with our answer to the FAQ section.

What WWSS product should I start with?

Parents should start by choosing a product that relates to their child’s age. Eg Parents with a 17 months old should choose the 12-18 month Online Training Module. If your child is over the age of 4 you can then select a swimming stroke that you would like information on. Eg the Freestyle Online Training Module. Each module runs through the entire teaching progression. If at any stage you would like more information please submit a FAQ to our team and we will get back to you ASAP.

Who is World Wide Swim School designed for?

WWSS is designed for anyone who wants to learn how to teach or understand what is in a quality swimming program.

WWSS is ideal for:

  • Busy parents with home pools
  • Rural/remote parents with limited access to quality instruction
  • Swimming teachers who wish to enhance their knowledge
  • Swim school operators wanting to educate staff

How do you teach swimming online?

World Wide Swim School uses an interactive learning program that combines video streaming, PDF downloads and short quizzes to educate its users on learn to swim information.

How does the interactive product work?

The interactive learning products have a number of stages that make up the entire program. Each stage is broken down into a number of sections. Once you view one section of a stage you will be prompted to move to the next section of that stage, until you have viewed every section within the particular stage.

The program will remember how many sections and stages that you have complete successfully. Therefore next time you go to view your product, you will be able to click on the section or stage that you finished with the last time you viewed your product. WWSS strongly suggests that users download and read the user guide on the log in page. This will enable you to interact with your product quickly and easily and will answer any additional questions that you may have.

How many times do I get to view my product?

Your interactive learning product is valid for 12 months and you can view it as many times as you wish.

How do I log in to view my product?

Once you become a WWSS member and purchase a product you can view your product by logging in via the home page or through a link supplied in your purchase confirmation email.

How do I log off once I’m finished viewing my product?

Users can log off by clicking on the log out button at the top of dashboard. Alternatively users can simply exit the window automatically logging off.

What if I am having problems with my interactive product?

If you are having any difficulties at all using, viewing or progressing with your product please contact the WWSS team directly via email at [email protected] or through the HELP button in your dashboard. We will respond to your enquiry as soon as possible.

Why wear a t-shirt in the pool?

Wearing a loose t-shirt in the water will give your baby something to grip and hold. This encourages independence and maintains baby’s grasp reflex. This independence may one day save your baby’s life.

What is the purpose of a coloured plastic cup?

Cups are important as they allow us to continue the conditioning process we use in the bath in the pool. There is no chance of a plastic cup breaking in the pool.

Why do I need coloured toys?

Toys are incorporated into the lesson to make it fun and stimulating. Remember toys should have a swimming related purpose.

Balls… Large colourful balls are perfect for stimulation and great for babies to chase when doing assisted and unassisted kicking. Balls of different textures, hard, soft or rippled increase stimulation.

Rattles… Rattles are ideal to distract baby if they ingest water or get upset in the pool. If baby cries during the lesson calm them while in the pool. If parents get

out of the pool, the baby will associate crying with getting out of the pool.

Watering cans… By pouring water we can excite and stimulate baby’s senses. This helps them relax and builds their confidence around water.

How many lessons a week should my child have?

Laurie recommends parents take their child to the pool at least twice per week. Parents should combine formal learn to swim lessons with exploratory play opportunities in different aquatic environments. The more exposure children have to the water the sooner they learn their capabilities and boundaries in the water. Parents should also utilize the daily bath routine to consolidate basic swimming skills like water familiarization, breath control and floating. This bath time swimming lessons are particular beneficial for children under that age of 4.

My child is terrified of the water. What do I do?

First and foremost you need to determine what is frightening your child. Have they had a bad experience, have you unintentionally scared them (eg saying things like “don’t go near the pool edge you’ll hurt yourself”)?

One of the most common reasons for children to become scared is lack of control. For a child to be in control in the water they need shallow water. They need to be able to either sit on a ledge or stand up on the bottom of the pool by themselves. When they are doing this they are in control. If you are holding your child in deep water they are not in control, you are. Therefore playing in a pool that is shallow or on a ledge is essential for the frightened beginner.

Once they have built up their confidence in the shallow you can gradually introduce them to the deeper water. This can be done through reassuring your child that you are there with them and through setting small tasks for your child to accomplish. For example letting them play on the ledge and then saying let’s go and touch the lane rope (out in the deep) and then we’ll come straight back and play on the ledge. Slowly but surely your child will build confidence.

Remember if your child is frightened go very slowly all it takes is patience and time with frightened children. Regular exposure is also very important for the frightened beginner. Parents should commit to taking their child to the pool on consecutive days until they observe their child relaxing in the environment.

What can I do to stop my baby from crying when they are at the pool?

Force and fear has no place in the teaching of swimming and water safety. Therefore if your child is crying and upset when performing specific swimming skills eg during back floating, stop immediately.

Always try to determine what is making the child upset. Are they hungry? Are they tired? Are they cold? Did they swallow some water? Once you know what the problem is then it is a lot easier to fix it. For instance you may simply need to feed them at a suitable time before they have their lesson or you may need to put a sun shirt on the baby to keep them warm.

Another way to stop a baby crying is through distraction. Toys are excellent stimulants and great distractions for babies. Noise is also great for distraction e.g. tapping a cup on the side of the pool. Importantly talking, soothing and reassuring your baby is vital for them to feel comfortable and at ease.

Finally if your baby cries avoid getting out of the water. Try to comfort the baby while still in the pool. If you get out of the pool every time they baby cries then they are going to associate being upset with getting out of the pool.

Does my child need to wear goggles?

Goggles are not a necessity. However they may help if children have sensitive or sore eyes. With goggles it is important that children do not become reliant on them. This means leaving goggles at home every second week or only allowing children to wear goggles for half the lesson. Remember children need to learn to swim without goggles for safety reasons e.g. if they fall in.

How long will it take my child to learn how to swim?

Every child is different and therefore it is impossible to give an exact answer to this question. However practice and exposure are the keys to learning therefore if you want your child to learn fast you need to take them to the pool regularly this means two or more times per week. Holiday courses are a great opportunity for fast progression because the children get to practice every day.

What qualifications should swimming teachers have?

In Australia swimming teachers should hold current accreditation with AUSTSWIM or ASCTA. Both these associations offer extension course for specialized teaching areas EG. Infant and Preschool Aquatics. Swimming teachers must also have a current CPR certificate.

What age can my baby start swimming?

Laurie believes the best time to start formal learn to swim lesson is at 4 months of age. By four moths parents are relaxed handling baby, the baby has good neck control and baby is interested in new and exciting situations. Laurie encourages parents to start informal swimming lessons from birth. During bath time lessons parents can introduce baby to the conditioning process that we use to teach the baby breath control on command. If you haven’t started early with your child don’t worry. Regular exposure to the water is the key in teaching children to swim.

What to look for in a good swim schools?

As a former school teacher and Physical Educationalist, it is Laurie’s belief that good swimming schools, apart from the obvious benefits of clean warm water, qualified teachers, and a happy learning environment, should like other Educational Establishments, have a sound curriculum.

This curriculum should be graded and age appropriate.

All learn-to-swim should follow progressive teaching and learning of basic skills.

More simply,

  • If children have not mastered breath control they should not submerge.
  • If children have not mastered floating they should not be encouraged to use propulsive movements.

In infant swimming, learning age appropriate skills are most important. It is impossible to teach children certain physical skills before they are developmentally ready. Good swim schools will study and build the swimming lesson around baby’s developmental needs and readiness for a particular skill.

Parental involvement is essential when learning to swim. Swimming is a complex physical activity in an unusual environment. It requires time, patience and a commitment from the parent.

Parental supervision and participation in swimming lessons is encouraged for children under 4. This creates a safe and secure learning environment and assists learning as children get individual attention from their parents.

Maximum practice time where children are kept busy practicing their swimming is vital. Look for a swim school that

  • Has patient teachers
  • And that keep children busy and active

Exposure to water will also determine how confident your child becomes in the water. Therefore children with home pools or children who attend lessons more than once a week will learn faster.

If you, as a parent, are not prepared to be patient persist and encourage your child all year round you cannot expect to gain the social, health, and safety benefits that children gain from learning to swim at an early age.

Finally fear is another factor that can slow down a child’s progress.

Patience is a quality teachers require if they are teaching a frightened child to swim. Any swimming lessons that force or terrify children against their will are totally inappropriate.

Swim Schools should hold professional memberships with AUSTSWIM and Swim Australia.

I have grandkids who are attending swimming lessons once a week. They are aged 8 and 5. I have been taking them and watching for progress, but am unsure what to actually expect

There should certainly be maximum practice time in the children’s lessons to help them progress. Sitting and waiting for a turn while the teacher takes students one and a time is not going to help them progress. By 5 and certainly 8 children should have mastered circling the lane so that all children are kept moving and busy. The teacher can then given them individual attention and feedback as they pass them. If the children are having their lesson once a week and following this up with play swim outside of the weekly lesson this should also help them to progress if the second lesson per week option is not affordable.

I would recommend you visit a number of swim schools and have a look at the lessons so that you can compare them. It may be that you’ll need to travel a little way but I’m sure that if you find the right school this won’t be a problem. It may also confirm that the swim school you’re grandkids are going to is doing a great job and they may just need a little bit more exposure…. Holiday intensive programs help to progress students quickly. In this instance they go everyday and consolidate their skills and build on new ones.

Holiday intensive programs are generally good value for money as well as Swim School sometimes offer discounts on these.

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How beneficial is it to swim through the winter months?

Swimming through winter is vital especially if you want your children to maintain their current skills and progress with their swimming. Some would say it’s more important to continue lessons during the winter months because the opportunities to play and explore outside of lessons in the home pool, public pool, beach, creek etc etc are limited because of the cooler weather. Today commercial swimming pools are generally heated and covered from the elements and therefore provide the ideal learning environment for all year round swimming. Parents can also dress their children in appropriate swimming attire to keep them warmer and putting a swimming cap on is really helpful as children can loose heat through their head. The hardest part about swimming in winter is getting dressed after lessons. But there are fabulous robe towels that you can get to rug children up as soon as they get out of the pool and also I like to pop on a beanie that my grandmother knitted on my little kids!

I hope this information helps. I would 100% recommend swimming during winter.

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