Learn To Swim FAQ

What to bring to swimming lessons?
How do i gain entry to my class?
My child is not well; can they still come to their swimming lesson?
Can my child swim before or after their lesson?
Should my child wear goggles?
When do i know when my child is ready to move up a level?
Is your water heated?
Does my child need private lessons?
Can i take photos of my child during class?

What To Bring To Swimming Lessons?

  • Swimming costume
  • Towel
  • Dry, warm clothing to change into
  • Hair bands for students with long hair
  • Goggles (not compulsory but advisable) please ensure your child’s goggles fit correctly before the lesson commences
  • Swimming Caps (not compulsory but advisable)
  • Aqua Nappies (compulsory for children not toilet trained)

Swimwear, goggles, swimming caps & aqua nappies are all available for purchase in the pool shop.

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How Do I Gain Access To My Class?

All students will be issued with a membership card for Learn to Swim lessons with responsible parent cards provided for access for up to 2 non-swimmer spectator entries. Entry is accessible via the turnstiles by scanning the cards provided. On occasion access will not be permitted through the turnstiles this is due to a message on our system. If this does occur proceed to the reception desk for direction and assistance. If you require access through our gate system due to a pram, wheel chair, no card or other reasons please line up at reception to have your card scanned & access permitted.

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My Child Is Not Well; Can They Still Come To Their Swimming Lesson?

Do not send children to lessons if they are suffering from:

  • Any contagious disease e.g. conjunctivitis, rubella.
  • Flu, fever, head cold, runny nose, sore throats, and cold sores.
  • Vomiting, diarrhoea, ringworm, head lice, urinary tract infections.

Notify the centre of your child’s absence prior to their regular lesson. If 2 hours notice is provided along with a medical certificate a make-up lesson can be arranged. See our make-up lesson policy for more details.

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Refunds/credits will only be given in extreme circumstances, e.g. a major incident, hospitalisation, or broken limbs requiring an absence from the learn to swim program for a minimum period of three weeks.

Ripples learn to swim department needs to be notified within seven working days of any change to current student’s circumstances.

Refunds/credits will not be given under any circumstances for any absences due to holidays, religious reasons, general sickness or for absences for less than three weeks. (Make-up lessons are offered as an alternative).

If you are cancelling your learn to swim lessons for any other reason than injury/illness, a monetary refund will not be given, however the balance of lessons will be transferred to centre credit and can be used to purchase other services/products offered by Ripples Leisure Centre’s.

Any application for refund must be made through reception and must have a copy of supporting documentation for absence attached. Any application for refund can only be approved by the aquatics manager.

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Can My Child Swim Before or After their Lesson?

Yes, however we strongly recommend this only occurs after their class. That way, your child will remain focused & will not be tired for the duration of their class, thus improving their opportunity to learn & develop.

For those students whose lessons are conducted at the Hydrotherapy Centre, swimming before & after your lesson is not permitted as this pool is not intended for recreational purposes and also due the special environment conditions & limited space. Ripples has made an allowance for those clients affected and students from Hydro can swim at the main centre if they report to reception within 30 minutes of the conclusion of their lesson.

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Should My Child Have Goggles?

Most definitely, goggles are very important, they give students confidence when learning to submerge and keep water and hair out of the eyes when learning breathing technique. This simply means your child shouldn’t have to keep stopping & wiping their eyes & face. Goggles also assist older children maintain stability & balance in the water as they can see their stroke. This is a key factor in developing their stroke & technique. Ripples pool shop stocks a range of goggles suitable for all ages… just ask our staff for assistance.

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When Do I Know When My Child Is Ready To Move Up A Level?

The assessment process at Ripples Leisure Centre is continuous. This allows your child to progress to the next level as soon as they ready rather than waiting until the next block. Our instructors continually assess all students’ ability weekly against our set criteria & will notify the learn to swim supervisor to arrange an assessment as soon as they deem them ready to move up.

Progression depends on many factors; it is important to remember that every child is different and progresses at their own pace. Every class level has set skills which must be achieved in order for the student to progress.

Swimming is a unique motor skill and unlike walking or running, it is not a natural action for people and takes practice and repetition to learn. The more you practice the quicker you will see results.

If you’re looking to accelerate your child’s development, swimming twice a week maybe an option as is our holiday intensive programs; you will see results faster as your child is repetitively reinforcing skills learnt.

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Is Your Water Heated?

Yes, all three sites St Marys, Hydro and Penrith are heated pools with Penrith the only facility operated outdoors. The water temperature at St Marys and Penrith is held at approximately 29°C all year round. This is the ideal temperature for teaching Learn to Swim and provides a comfortable environment for all swimmers.

Our infants & special needs programs at St Marys are conducted at Ripples Hydrotherapy Centre with the temperature ranging between 32-34°C which is optimum for learning comfort & enjoyment.

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Does My Child Need Private Lessons?

Many parents ask this question & there is no right answer, it very much depends on the child. Younger children benefit from the social interaction of a class. They learn & master motor skills by copying the actions of others & most importantly have fun with other students. We would not recommend private lessons for toddlers. However, if your child is school age and would benefit from one-on-one interaction with an instructor to focus them throughout the lesson or refine a challenging skill so as to enable them to progress, private lessons may be beneficial. Please see our learn to swim team leader for more information.

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Can I Take Photos Of My Child During Class?

Ripples Leisure Centre permits the use of private photography including during swimming lessons however Ripples’ reserves the right to inspect, stop or delete any images/video material if they suspect inappropriate photography. No photography or video equipment including mobile phones is permitted in the change facilities at anytime.

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