Take the plunge - what to expect from adult swimming lessons

Why learn to swim?

The physical and mental health benefits of swimming are infinite (we’ve written about 22 of them in another of our blogs - 22 Seriously Good Reasons To Swim). This whole body, low impact exercise is a fun way to get active for all the family but remember, it is a crucial life skill too. 

Ask yourself, could you swim confidently if you fell into a river? Or would you be competent swimming in the sea? If the answer’s no or you’re not sure, then swimming lessons could be the key to the life-saving skills you need both in and out of the pool. 

Being able to swim could save your life, or the life of your loved ones, if ever you should need it, but it’s also such a versatile and varied physical activity too.   From enjoying laps in the pool, splashing around with the kids and having more fun on the beach, to getting into sports such as triathlon or aquathlon, sailing or diving to name a few. Or simply taking time out to relax and recharge – there are endless ways to put this essential life-saving skill to good use, while having lots of fun along the way. 


so what if you’re an adult who can’t swim?

According to Swim England's (formerly the Amateur Swimming Association) research in 2015, one in five adults can’t swim – so if you’re one of them, you’re not alone.

Many adults in the UK may not have had the opportunity to learn to swim or made enough progress in the pool as a child. Some might have been out of the water for so long they’re nervous to get back in, or developed a fear of deep water that feels too hard to conquer.

 As adults we can be quite good at avoiding facing our fears or situations we find uncomfortable. Many parents only revisit their swimming journey when they take their children to the pool because of deep-rooted fears or misconceptions about what adult swimming lessons are really like, and this in itself can mean children of non-swimmers are also non-swimmers too.

So let’s put your concerns to bed and dive right into why finally learning to swim can be the best form of self-care.


What can you expect from adult swimming lessons with Freedom leisure...

1) A clean slate

Whatever hang ups or worries you have about your swimming ability, you can leave them to one side and start afresh once in the pool.

Our Adult Swim Programme is designed to suit all abilities from total beginner right up to seasoned swimmers wanting to perfect or improve their stroke.

So if you’re starting right from the beginning, getting comfortable putting your face in the water and kicking off from the side, that’s absolutely fine.

Or if you’re an improver, already able to swim a few lengths, but want to learn a new stroke or gain more confidence, that’s fine too.

Oh, and if you’re a competent swimmer regularly hitting 40 lengths or more, but could benefit from some advice on your stroke technique to take you to the next level - we have those types of lessons too.

Adult swimming lessons are done either in small groups of similar competence or as a 1-2-1 - the choice is yours.

Whatever your ability, whatever level you’re already at, swimming lessons can help to make you much stronger, more confident and more efficient. It doesn’t matter where you start from, the key is just to begin – and we’re here to help. It's a completely clean slate.


2) friendly support from #peoplelikeyou

The beauty of swimming is that it’s a mindful activity.

There’s no need to worry what other people are thinking – they’re all too busy getting on with their own swim! Whether you book group swimming lessons or one-to-one sessions, our fully trained instructors are friendly, supportive and understanding of your needs.

Everyone in your session will be of a similar ability and there to learn too, so you’ll make progress together and can support each other along the way.

“I learnt to swim in my late 20s so I could do a triathlon. Having always swum backstroke for fear of water going up my nose, I booked onto the improver group lessons at the King Alfred Centre in Brighton to build confidence in the water and learn front crawl and other strokes. Even though I was totally out of my comfort zone every session I relished the challenge of finally getting over my fear of deep water and loved the support of the instructor and the group. I finished the course able to swim a whole length front crawl and took everything I’d learnt into further practice towards completing my first triathlon.”

Tess Agnew, fitness blogger

3) professional coaching


Of course, our experienced swim instructors are fully qualified with Swim England Swimming teaching qualifications or equivalent and deliver the Swim England Swim Adult Pathway to support learners at all stages of their swimming development.

Their job is to make you feel comfortable and capable in the water, whatever level you’re at, so you can rest easy knowing you’re in safe hands.


4) Lots of fun and new-found confidence

It’s a great feeling when you achieve something you never thought you could do, and the perfect motivator to keep progressing.

Each session you’ll practice progressive drills and exercises designed to up your skills and build confidence in the water. Breaking down components into easily manageable activities: breathing, floating, gliding, stroke technique, turning, even jumping in at the deep end, when you’re ready, and then putting it all together, across all types of strokes.

“As a swimming teacher of over 30 years I have to say what a pleasure it is to support new adult learners who have made a decision to finally take the plunge to learn to swim or improve their skills. It is always great to meet new people and hear their varied stories and see how swimming positively impacts on their lives – adding fun into their family visits to the pool, opening them up to the joys of swimming in the sea by giving them skills to feel safe in open water or enabling them to feel confident enough to attend a lane swimming session or start activities such as an aqua fitness class, which supports a more active lifestyle.”

Alyson Zell, Freedom Leisure Group Aquatic Development Manager

Whatever your swimming ability, it’s never too late to learn to swim as an adult.


Our Adult Swimming Programme caters for all ages and abilities:

  • Learn to Swim – introduction to the swimming pool environment, water confidence and swimming skills
  • Stroke Improvement – building on existing skills to develop more efficient strokes
  • Introduction to Lane Swimming – make sure you understand lane etiquette
  • Fitness Swimming – moving the gym to the pool, you can get just as an effective workout in the pool as you can in the gym!
  • Swimming to improve muscle tone and support weight loss.
  • Swimming for Competitive or Challenge Events – to support your goals for Triathlon, Masters Swimming, Open Water Swimming or Charity Challenge Events

Take the plunge!

It’s never too late to start your swimming journey whether you are at the beginning by learning to swim for the first time or looking to improve your technique and skills, Freedom Leisure has the programme to suit your needs.

Find out more