At Willoughby Swim Squads we encourage our swimmers to swim a minimum of twice a week. Whilst we do offer some lessons once per week we prefer our swimmers to swim regularly. Coach Paul Hardman suggests that the fitness component that is introduced when swimming regularly ensures the rate of improvement in our swimmers is sustained. Many parents are often disappointed with the rate of progress when swimming once per week, but it is a sport that requires patience, consistency of application and regularity. There are so many new skills to learn in all 4 strokes before we see our children swimming well. Coordination at this young age is constantly being challenged and improved, and your consistency of practice with ensure that your child join the ranks of being a strong and capable swimmer.
Mini Squads – Stingrays
45 Minutes Duration
Our Stingray classes are 45 minutes in duration, and you can swim between 1-3 times per week. Paul’s personal recommendation is 2-3 times per week. Swimmers at this level should be able to swim 25 in all 4 strokes with a reasonable level of execution. Attention to correct breathing, maintenance of a level body alignment and a range of drills are used in all 4 strokes to progress and develop technique. We aim to develop technique to the best of the swimmers ability because we know that technique is much easier to improve when the swimmer is young. Dives, turns, finishes and learning how to swim fast are regular items of practice at this level of swimming. Strong kicking practice also recognises the importance of kicking in swimming.
Developmental Squads – Sea Lions
60 Minutes Duration
Our Sealion classes progress swimmers to the next level of swimming. We continue to refine and develop technique, whilst exploring the importance of good discipline and its relationship to good technique. Breathing patterns, stroke length, body position manipulation and a variety of drills are used to master technique. Great kicking is encouraged. Training sets and the importance of learning how to use the clock to improve swimming are explained. This is an excellent squad for all school carnival focussed swimmers and the young developing competitive swimmer. Paul’s personal recommendation for swimmers at this level is between 2-4 sessions per week depending on age and ability.
Competitive Squads – Swordfish
90 minutes Duration
Swimmers at this level demonstrate the ability, commitment and desire to progress to competition swimming and will be encouraged to join the Willoughby Swim Club. Training sets are designed to challenge the swimmer and fitness and capacity become an important part of the swimmers development. Technique continues to evolve and swimmers may start to specialise and develop a preference for specific strokes and distances. Both endurance and sprint training are used to diversify training. At this level of swimming, coaches will be looking for a commitment to the training process and encouraged to swim between 3-5, 90 minute sessions per week depending on age and ability.
*Please note that other session times are available for Swordfish swimmers, however it is best to discuss these times with the coaches to determine your suitability for these sessions.
Competitive Squads – Dolphins
90 Minute Duration
Dolphin swimmers are competitive swimmers who are aspiring to be the best swimmers they can be. At this level of swimming Willoughby Swim Squads has a demonstrated history of being able to support and produce swimmers at the highest level. Many Willoughby Swim Club members have achieved National Champion status.
Dolphin swimmers in consultation with the coach will be expected to maintain a minimum of 5 sessions per week with many swimmers recognising the need to do more to achieve competitive success. Only those swimmers who show potential to operate at this level of swimming will be encouraged to join this squad. Swimmers will compete at Club, Metropolitan, State and National Championships and will display the ability to balance school work and swimming sessions to achieve positive outcomes in both areas.
Dry land core based activities are supported for this level of swimmer.
*Availability of core / land training sessions: please note that the Monday and Wednesday afternoon sessions for Dolphin swimmers are based at the St Aloysius College indoor 25 metre facility. Please come prepared for core by wearing joggers, shorts and a t shirt. St Aloysius College Pool is situated in Upper Pitt Street, Kiribilli.