Step Rock’s Learn To Swim (LTS) programme offers swimming tuition for children aged 4-9 at the East Sands Leisure Centre on Thursday evenings (6-7pm). The programme has been developed over many years and is focussed on developing swimming skills across the four strokes: backstroke, breaststroke, butterfly and front crawl as well as diving, turns, streamlining and sculling – skills which will help the young swimmer should they wish to try competitive swimming. With a view to progression to competitive swimming, the final level includes some familiarisation with starter’s whistles used in racing, the use of the pace clock, and Individual Medley turns and relays. As with all our sessions, the LTS programme is delivered by volunteer coaches, most of whom are qualified teachers, or are working towards such a qualification.
Progression through the levels is continually assessed by the coaches, but it is expected that most swimmers will reach the end of the programme in the year that they turn 9. Parents and carers can greatly assist this aim by continuing to take their children swimming outwith the Step Rock sessions – this helps the swimmer to gain further confidence and co-ordination in the water.
By the age of 9, most of our swimmers will have had the opportunity to sample the sport of swimming in a novice competition, either at a friendly gala, the Fife Novice Leagues or at our own Club Championships. For some this is the spur they need to progress their training to the next level and they will join the Junior Squad. Others may either decide the sport of swimming is not for them but wish to continue it as a fitness activity, or they may need more time to develop their swimming skills. In both cases, we try to offer these swimmers an alternative development pathway. Currently this is on Mondays, but it may move to Wednesdays in the near future.
The kit list for LTS is: a pair of well-fitting goggles; swimwear (“jammers” for boys; a one-piece swimsuit for girls). Towards the end of LTS, most swimmers also have a gala shirt and a pair of short fins (“flippers”) may also be advised.