Autumn term runs from Wednesday 4th January to Sunday 2nd April. 

Leander’s Swim Academy Programme

The club motto is “developing swimming in South West London”; Leander’s Academy makes this happen by equipping young swimmers with the correct technical ability to pursue competitive swimming, or simply be proficient in a vital life skill. Inspired by the ASA National Teaching Plan for Teaching Swimming but adapted by our experienced teachers, at Leander we offer children an exciting and effective pathway to swimming excellence. How to join.

The Academy Programme follows the academic year from September to July. Swimmers are assessed regularly to ensure they progress through the stages of the programme as their ability improves. The skills we develop throughout the carefully structured plan- albeit geared towards competitive swimming- can be transferred to any other aquatic sport, enabling children to be confident in water and the many activities it has to offer.

Whether you wish to enroll on our programme for the safety or the competitive element, the Academy will establish a proficiency in swimming that arguably only a competitive swimming club can achieve.

Trials are held throughout the year, and spaces are limited. Please keep checking regularly for updates on our Academy vacancies. 

Please note that from 2014 for all stages there is a £15 membership fee.

Stage 1: (Optimum Age: 4-5 – School Year; Reception/Year1)

Being introduced to the water can often be a daunting experience for children. Stage 1 of our Academy Programme aims to quickly build confidence in young non-swimmers, using lots of fun to help children explore this new environment. Children participate in teacher led games and exercises in order to accomplish the foundational movements which are the building blocks of swimming. This stage will help to establish water confidence and a sense of water safety rules, as well as ensuring the pool becomes an enjoyable environment. Soon they will be able to kick with aids up to 10m on their front and back, float on the water using aids and support, understand breath control and be able to submerge fully. They will also be able to enter and exit the water safely, whether they are climbing or jumping into shallow water.

Fees per term: (one 30 minute lesson per week) £130

Stage 2: (Optimum Age: 4-5 – School Year; Reception/Year1)

Swimmers will eventually be able to swim independently on both their front and back for up to 15m without stopping, unaided by floats and unassisted by our teachers. We now start to really focus on swimming, practising front crawl and backstroke drills and lots of push and glide to get positioning right. These drills will begin to build the foundations of good technique. s the term goes on and the swimmers begin to gain more confidence, strokes begin to improve. Games are still integral to lessons and we use sinking toys to get children to submerge to the pool floor. We also move into deeper water, and swimmers will confidently be able to jump into deep water and climb out from the side

Fees per term: (one 30 minute lesson per week) £130

Stage 3: (Optimum Age: 4-5 – School Year; Reception/Year1)

As still one of the younger stages, swimmers still enjoy games in their lessons to make kicking, whole stroke swimming and body position exercises fun. Throughout this stage we will see swimmers be able to swim 25m unaided and unassisted in both shallow and deep water. Now that confidence and the ability to swim has been achieved, we start to focus on learning the correct techniques and stroke rhythms, establishing a solid foundation for the next stages.

Fees per term: (one 30 minute lesson per week) £130

Stage 4: (Optimum Age: 5-6 School Year 2)

Here we start honing stroke technique, practising different drills over 25m for their entire lesson. Breaststroke is now introduced, working towards mastering a new stroke whilst continuing to improve their front crawl and backstroke. We dedicate a portion of every lesson to diving and jumping from the side or the racing blocks, as well as learning the correct underwater sequences, as approved by the ruling swimming body, FINA. As they develop a truly technical understanding of the individual strokes, they will also increase their strength and stamina.

Fees per term: (one 30 minute lesson per week) £130

Stage 5: (Optinum Age: 5-6 or School Year 2)

Stage 5 onwards enables swimmers to swim 25m and sometimes 50m continuously while focusing on specific drills to improve their technique and build their stamina. Now FINA approved starts and turns are taught and practised on every length, enabling swimmers to swim their strokes in a completely ‘legal’ fashion to prepare them for competitive swimming. Lessons focus primarily on one stroke in order to analyse technique and make any corrections. Our small groups of twelve mean that teachers can give personal feedback to individuals throughout the 30 minute lesson.

Fees per term: (one 30 minute lesson per week) £130

Stage 6: (Optimum Age; 6-7 or School Year 3)

Now in the more advanced stages of the Academy programme, swimmers understand the importance of swimming with precision technique to produce a quality performance. Speed is now introduced to the swimmers and while teachers continue to focus primarily on technique, fun races and team relays at the end of the lessons are organised to instill the competitive element into children. A big step is to begin to teach butterfly, often seen as the most challenging stroke. The more advanced stages require a lot of swimming, combining the control of technique and the demands of stamina as they swim up more than 500m per lesson.

Swimmers are required to swim twice a week.

Fees per term: (two 30 minute lessons per week) £195

Pre-Squad: (Optimum Age; 7-8 or School Year 4)

We now begin to focus heavily on technique, racing and building stamina. Drills are practiced over 50m instead of 25m. Swimmers will gain an advanced understanding of the technical elements of swimming, not just of the strokes but of the water, such as buoyancy, weight and balance and how these factors contribute to just how effectively we can swim.

This transitional stage is aimed at getting swimmers prepared for squad swimming. The focus is on perfecting technique in every stroke and building stamina in two 45 minute lessons. At least 15 minutes of each lesson is dedicated to creating a racing scenario such as Academy or school galas, diving from the blocks (when/where these are available) and racing distances of 25m and 50m.

Fees per term: (two 45 minute lessons per week) £215

At the end of this Stage teachers will assess each child according to ability, commitment and attendance, and where possible, will offer a place in our Development squads, our Club or Fitness squad. In some cases, where appropriate, we may suggest other clubs, depending on what would be most suitable for your child.