Private Lessons – Case Studies

Private Lessons – Case Studies

Here at Neil Bailey Swimming we are big believers in the more swimming the better – whether that be swimming with the family, school swimming lessons, group lessons or even private lessons. Group lessons are great for general swimming improvements, getting confident in the water, learning strokes with the added benefit of learning from your peers.

However great the group lessons are there are benefits to having private lessons. Below are some case studies of some swimmers who have experienced our private lessons and the progress they made.

Jack – confident swimmer aged 7 – swims once a week in group lessons, was struggling to get to grips with frontcrawl breathing. During his 1-2-1 lesson he was able to focus primarily on his breathing. Jack’s teacher was able to spend time ensuring he was exhaling fully into the water, turning his head at the correct moment to take enough of a breath in. Using flippers and a float to breakdown his stroke to enable him to focus on the finer details of head position and breath control, he began to make progress. Drills were taught to help Jack understand how to co-ordinate his arm pull and his breath. Working 1-2-1 with Jack meant that his teacher could tailor the drills to suit him and his stroke.


Amelia – reluctant non-swimmer aged 5 – started school swimming lessons but is fearful of the water and doesn’t like to get her face wet. Building confidence in the water often begins with trusting the teacher, reassurance and games can help distract the child – which is where Amelia’s teacher started. Slow, simple steps helped Amelia start to get her face wet – praising her efforts and ‘showing off’ to Mum what she was now able to do reinforced her progress. Counting down to faces in and also counting how long she could put her face in the water for helped Amelia get ready to submerge and also work to a target – keeping an element of control helped her feel more confident. Amelia’s mum can now use the same steps when they practise in the bath and when swimming at the weekend.

Bobby – enthusiastic non-swimmer, aged 3. Has experience of parent-child lessons and is water confident but needs to develop understanding of floating and body position in water. During his private lessons Bobby was taught how to relax on his back, position his body to float and remain there long enough to float unaided. He loved the independence of being unaided in the water and with practise began to move through the water using sculling action. Bobby’s teacher noticed his natural floating abilities and then progressed to a water safety skill – self survival in which Bobby would learn to roll onto his back and float should he ever fall in. An understanding of body position and floating is essential for learning to swim but also vital for water safety.

Alia – club swimmer, aged 10. Swims regularly but wishes to improve her times and also work of her starts. After a warm up and initial stroke assessment Alia’s teacher identified some timing errors with her breathing during frontcrawl – using her mums iPhone to record a video to playback Alia could see herself where she was going wrong. Drills and practise resulted in a smoother stroke, a natural and full breath and meant that at the end of the swim she didn’t feel as exhausted – the extra energy could now be used to lengthen the stroke and increase leg speed. Diving was practised towards the end of her lessons and before she climbed out Alia practised some sprints.

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