Leisure Lifestyle

Swimming

Swimming

If you are a serious or a casual swimmer and you aren’t sure where to start then let us help.

Here you will find information on our pool admission policy, swimming lessons, and free-swimming initiatives across the county borough.

Leisure centres with swimming facilities:

Splash for no cash - Free swim Fridays

Fridays are set to become known as Free Swim Fridays where all the family, yes all the family, can swim for free in dedicated sessions. Yes, that means mum, dad, grandad or nan can dip their toe in, keep fit and have fun without splashing any cash.

During school holidays timetables are subject to change, please refer to your centres pages or notice boards.

School term dates

To help plan your school holidays and free-swimming sessions for the under 17's, please refer to the
term dates for schools in Caerphilly county borough.

During school holidays timetables are subject to change, please refer to your centres pages or notice boards.

Policy for all pools

Bathers who require armbands or swim jackets must remain in the shallow end of the pool. Bathers are permitted in the deep area of the pool if they can swim two lengths (50m) in a recognised stroke (front crawl or breast stroke not back stroke or doggy paddle), regardless of whether they are accompanied by a competent swimmer or not.

If your swimming skills appear weak to the lifeguard on duty, you will be required to complete a swim test.

Policy for all pools (except Newbridge)

The council strives to provide the safest possible swimming conditions within its facilities. We therefore follow the national recommendations as agreed by the ASA, STA, IMSPA and HSE, which states:

Under 8's
Any children under the age of 8 years must be supervised by a responsible adult (16yrs+) in a ratio of 1 adult to 2 children.

Under 5's
Must wear appropriate safety aids e.g. swim Jacket and Arm Bands - which are available to borrow free of charge.

Babies Under 2
Must wear a seated Buoyancy Aid - which are available to borrow free of charge on poolside.

Babies need to be at least 3 months old and it is advised that they have had their full set of immunisations, however CCBC acknowledge that this is down to the parental discretion.  Babies under 1 year old need to be in constant 'touch supervision' on a one to one basis.

 

Policy for Newbridge pool

In the interest of the safety of your child, we operate an age restriction policy for the swimming pool. This policy has been developed using County Regulations and IMSPA guidelines.

Children under 8 years of age must be supervised by a responsible person (must be 16 years of age minimum).

One responsible person may supervise two children under 8 years of age, provided that both children are at least 5 years of age.

Children of 4 years and under must be constantly supervised on a 1 : 1 basis.

Babies need to be at least 3 months old and have had their full set of immunisations.  Babies under 1 year old need to be in constant 'touch supervision' on a one to one basis.

Entry will not be permitted during the final 30 minutes of the session.

Please note: persons in charge of children who appear to be under 16 years old may be asked for proof of age before being admitted to the pool.

The purpose of the admission policy

An admissions policy is required because Lifeguards can never replace the care and attention provided by a parent or guardian.  The purpose of the child admissions policy is to safeguard children who use our swimming pool.  It is not intended to prevent children having fun and enjoying the benefits associated with swimming.  Nor is it intended to make life difficult for parents or guardians.

16 and under

The free swim initiative funded by the Welsh Government, gives young people aged 16 and under, free-swimming sessions during the school holidays.

You can find out more about the Free Swimming initiative for children and young people on the SportWales website.

Free structured swim sessions, including water polo and snorkelling, take part in the school holidays. Please look out for the timetable and further information a few weeks before.

60+

Older people across the county borough can also take part in this exciting initiative, which gives everyone over the age of 60 the chance to swim for free in local swimming pools.

The Assembly's free swim initiative aims to encourage older people in the area to lead a healthy, active lifestyle. Swimming is an ideal form of exercise for people of all ages and the council's six pools offer a range of impressive facilities.

You can find out more about the Free Swimming initiative for Older people on the SportWales website.

Swimming lessons for children are available at the six swimming pools within Caerphilly county borough. Courses can be undertaken more than once in order that each individual attains the skill level and confidence required to progress to the next level. In addition to the swimming lesson programme, a wide range of crash courses and pool activities are on offer during the school holidays.

Please note that occasionally some centres may not offer the full programme, please enquire at your local Leisure Centre for more information.

What should my baby/child wear?

All children should wear appropriate swimwear i.e. trunks and costumes, clothing such as long shorts are not allowed. Children are asked to tie all long hair back and take off any jewellery. For hygienic reasons children should shower before entering the pool.

If your child is not yet out of nappies, swim nappies must be worn as conventional nappies become water logged and can weigh your child down. They can also be a potential hygiene problem as they are not able to contain small accidents. Waterproof nappies can be washed and re-used, and are available to buy at all centres - ask at reception.

Children with disabilities

All children are invited and encouraged to take part in the swimming lessons provided through the learn to swim programme. However, for children who have particular needs, specific lessons and clubs are available.

Check out the leisure centre timetables for disability swimming lesson times. (A list of leisure centres with swimming facilities can be found at the top of this page).

For further information please contact Paul Taylor (Insport Development Officer) on 01443 863225 or email taylop1@caerphilly.gov.uk.

Caerphilly County Borough Council Swimming Lesson Programme.

ASA new national plan for teaching swimming

Ducklings
Pre-requisite: 3 - 4 years old (depending on the pool)

Introduces children to the water environment, whilst developing their water confidence through floatation, submersion and basic stroke skills.

Stage 1
Pre-requisite: 5 years old or have achieved Duckling 3 award

This class develops basic safety awareness, basic movement skills and water confidence skills. Swimmers may use aids such as a float etc.

Award Criteria Show | Hide

By the end of this stage participants will be able to, with or without aide, equipment or support:

  1. Enter the water safely.
  2. Move forwards for a distance of 5 metres.
  3. Move backwards for a distance of 5 metres.
  4. Move Sideways for a distance of 5 metres.
  5. Scoop the water and wash face.
  6. Be at ease with water showered from overhead.
  7. Move into a stretched floating position using aids, equipment or support.
  8. Regain an upright position from on the back, with support.
  9. Regain an upright position from on the front, with support.
  10. Push and glide in a horizontal position to or from a wall.
  11. Take part in a teacher led partner orientated game.
  12. Demonstrate an understanding of pool rules.
  13. Exit the water safely.

Glossary

"Move" - Defined as any means of moving around the pool with the feet on or off the bottom e.g. stepping, hopping, skipping, jumping.

"Support" - Defined as wall or another person.

"Pool rules" - Participants assessed through questions & answers and / or by practically applying the pool rules.

Stage 2
Pre-requisite: Move from Stage 1

Developing safe entries to the water including, jumping in, basic floating, travel and rotation to gain upright position unaided. Travel 5 metres on front and back unaided.

Award Criteria Show | Hide

By the end of this stage participants will be able to, with or without aide, equipment or support:

  1. Jump in from poolside safely.
  2. Blow bubbles a minimum of 3 times rhythmically with nose and mouth submerged.
  3. Regain an upright position from the back without support.
  4. Regain an upright position from the front without support.
  5. Push from the wall and glide on the back.
  6. Push from the wall and glide on the front.
  7. Travel on the back for 5 metres.
  8. Travel on the front for 5 metres.
  9. Perform a rotation from the front to the back to gain an upright position.
  10. Perform a rotation from the back to the front to gain an upright position.

Glossary

"Rhythmically" - Defined as inhalation and exhalation is of equal length, in a controlled manner.

"Support" - Defined as wall or another person.

"Travel" - Defined as any means of moving independently around the pool with feet off the bottom using arms and legs.

"Upright position" - Defined as either standing or vertical floating position.

Stage 3
Pre-requisite: Move from Stage 2

Developing safe entries including submersion, travel up to 10 metres on their front and back (unaided), progress rotation skills and water safety knowledge.

Award Criteria Show | Hide

By the end of this stage participants will be able to, without support:

  1. Jump in from poolside and submerge (minimum depth 0.9).
  2. Sink, push away from wall on side and maintain a streamlined position.
  3. Push and glide of the front with arms extended and log roll onto the back.
  4. Push and glide on the back with arms extended and log roll onto the front.
  5. Travel on the front, tuck to rotate around the horizontal axis to return on the back.
  6. Fully submerge to pick up an object.
  7. Answer correctly 3 questions on the Water Safety Code.
  8. Travel 10 metres on the back.
  9. Travel 10 metres on the front.

Glossary

"Travel" - Defined as any means of moving independently around the pool with feet off the bottom using arms and legs.

Stage 4
Pre-requisite: Move from Stage 3

Developing the understanding of buoyancy through a range of skills including sculling, refining kicking technique for all strokes, and swimming 10 metres to an expected standard as directed by the ASA.

Award Criteria Show | Hide

By the end of this stage participants will be able to, without aids:

  1. Demonstrate an understanding of buoyancy.*
  2. Perform a tuck float for 5 seconds.
  3. Perform a sequence of changing shapes (minimum of 3) whilst floating at the surface.
  4. Push and glide from the wall to the pool floor.
  5. Kick 10 metres Backstroke (one item of equipment** optional).
  6. Kick 10 metres Front crawl (one item of equipment** optional).
  7. Kick 10 metres Butterfly on the front or on the back (one item of equipment** optional).
  8. Kick 10 metres Breaststroke on the back (equipment** optional).
  9. Kick 10 metres Breaststroke on the front (equipment** optional).
  10. Perform on the back a head first sculling action for 5 metres in a horizontal position.
  11. Travel on back and roll in one continuous movement onto front.
  12. Travel on front an roll in one continuous movement onto back.
  13. Swim 10 metres, choice of stroke is optional.

Glossary

"Tuck float" - Refers to a mushroom float.

"Head first sculling" - Refers to a sculling action performed close to the hips with fingertips up, palms towards feet.

"Roll" - Defined as "log roll".

"Swim" - Defined as any means of moving by performing a recognised stroke as per ASA expected stroke standards.

* Use of different equipment can be used to explain sinking and floating (this can be wet or dry activity).

** Equipment can be used to assist buoyancy.

Stage 5
Pre-requisite: Move from Stage 4

Developing a variety of aquatic skills through sculling and treading water, and complete rotation, also performing 10 metres of all four strokes to the expected standards as directed by the ASA.

Award Criteria Show | Hide

By the end of this stage participants will be able to, without aids:

  1. Perform a stationary horizontal scull on the back.
  2. Perform a feet first sculling action for 5 metres whilst horizontal on the back.
  3. Perform a sculling sequence with a partner for 30-45 seconds to include a rotation.
  4. Tread Water* for 30 seconds.
  5. Perform 3 different shaped jumps into deep water.
  6. Swim 10 metres Backstroke.**
  7. Swim 10 metres Front crawl face in the water.**
  8. Swim 10 metres Breaststroke.**
  9. Swim 10 metres Butterfly.**
  10. Perform an handstand*** and hold for a minimum of 3 seconds.
  11. Perform a forward somersault, tucked, in the water.
  12. Demonstrate an action for getting help.

Glossary

"Feet first sculling" - Refers to a sculling action performed close to the hips with fingertips down, palms towards head.

"Stationary sculling" - Refers to a sculling action performed close to the hips with palms flat, facing pool bottom.

* Swimmer can use different methods to achieve the skill including egg beater kick, which must be performed out of standing depth.

** As per ASA expected stroke standards.

*** If participants are in deep water, a vertical hang (feet above head) upside down will be deemed acceptable for assessment purposes.

Action for getting help refers to participate in the water treading water and waving one arm above head whilst shouting for help. Participant must appear at ease in performing this activity.

Stage 6
Pre-requisite: Move from Stage 5

Developing effective swimming skills, including co-ordinated breathing; developing water safety aspects and understanding of preparation for exercise. Also introduced at this stage, lifesavings shout and signal rescue and swimming 25 metres of choice stroke.

Award Criteria Show | Hide

By the end of this stage participants will be able to, without aids:

  1. Demonstrate an understanding of preparation for exercise.
  2. Sink, push off on side from the wall, glide, kick and rotate into Backstroke.
  3. Sink, push off on side from the wall, glide, kick and rotate into front crawl.
  4. Swim 10 metres with clothes on.*
  5. Swim front crawl to include at least six rhythmical breaths.**
  6. Swim Breaststroke to include at least six rhythmical breaths.**
  7. Swim Butterfly to include at least three rhythmical breaths.**
  8. Swim 25 metres, choice of stroke is optional.**
  9. Perform a “shout & signal” rescue.
  10. Perform a surface dive.***
  11. Exit the water without using steps.

Glossary

"Preparation for exercise" - This may be assessed by Q & A. Answers should reflect the following: you must start by moving slowly, you must get warm, you can stretch, you must nor eat within 1 hour of coming swimming, kit required etc.

"Rhythmical breaths" - Refers to Front crawl as bilateral, Breaststroke as exhaling during the recovery/inhaling at any stage of the arm pull, and during butterfly, swimmers are encouraged to breathe every two strokes.

"Shout & Signal" - Requires the swimmer (on poolside) to raise the alarm (shouting for adult help), and then the swimmer (maintaining position on the poolside) must "shout and instruct" the casualty (who is in the water) and "give guidance" to help the casualty get to the side of the pool safely. This must be done without making any contact with the casualty to avoid danger.

* Minimum requirement T-shirt and shorts.

** As per ASA expected stroke standards.

*** Either head first or feet first can be assessed.

Stage 7
Pre-requisite: Move from Stage 6

Swim 25 metres of all four strokes and developing quality stroke technique up to 100metres. Develop additional aquatic skills including treading water, sculling and rotations. Also complete an aquatic obstacle course.

Award Criteria Show | Hide

By the end of this stage participants will be able to, without aids:

  1. Swim 25 metres Backstroke.*
  2. Swim 25 metres Front crawl.*
  3. Swim 25 metres Breaststroke.*
  4. Swim 25 metres Butterfly.*
  5. Perform a movement sequence of 1 minute duration, in a group of 3 or more, incorporating a number of the following skills:
  • Sculling - head first, feet first; Rotation-forward / backward.
  • Somersault, log roll; Floating – star on the front / on the back, tuck float, create own; Eggbeater - moving, lifting one or both arms out of the water link skills with strokes or sculls.
  • Perform a sitting dive.
  • Swim 50 metres continuously using one stroke.*
  • Swim 100 metres, using a minimum of 3 different strokes.**
  • Tread water using egg beater action for 30 seconds.
  • Complete an obstacle course (using a minimum of 4 objects) with feet off the bottom throughout.

Glossary

“Sculling” - Refers to a sculling action performed close to the hips with either feet first action – fingertips down, palms towards head, or headfirst action – fingertips up, palms towards feet.

“Tuck Float” - Refers to a mushroom float.

“Eggbeater action” - Refers to an alternate Breaststroke leg kick whilst maintaining high knee position.

“Obstacle course” - Teachers to ensure that the obstacle course gives the participants the opportunity to go under, over, round and through equipment.

* As per ASA expected stroke standards.

** Requires the swimmer to complete a full length before changing strokes. All strokes to be as per ASA stroke standards.

Advanced 1
To achieve ASA levels 9 and 10

Children will be able to swim a minimum of 150 metres, demonstrating efficient strokes. Children will also develop their swimming stamina as well as learn new skills in diving and water polo. This level provides children with the opportunity to develop awareness and skill in water safety and survival swimming.

Advanced 2
To achieve ASA levels 11 and 12

Children will further develop all the main swimming strokes and will be introduced to basic swimming endurance and speed skills leading to the Pre-Competition levels 1 and 2.

Pre-Competition
Levels 1 and 2

Children can continue their swimming development through leisure centre based swimming clubs. Children will have the opportunity to practise and achieve awards in activities such as diving, water polo, lifesaving and competitive swimming.

Aqua babes (3 - 18 months)
Is you baby unhappy at bath times? Do you have a fear of water and do not want your child to develop this fear? If so, take your child to one of our Adult and Child classes, and give them the confidence to enjoy the water. Your child will be introduced to water through songs, games in a warm and friendly environment.

Aqua tots (18 - 36 months)
Once your toddler is more independent and eager to learn, why not give them the added confidence of being able to swim. They will learn the basics of floating, submerging and swimming on front and back.

Water confidence (3/4 - 5 years)
An introduction for pre National Plan children to gain independence within the pool environment. These classes will be working to the Duckling 1 & 2 Awards.

Beginners (3 - 5 years)
These classes are designed for children who have already achieved Duckling Awards 1 & 2. They will be working towards Duckling 3,4 & 5 Awards.

Please note: You should not bring your child to these sessions until they have had their full set of immunisations. If you have decided not to have your child immunised, you should discuss bringing your baby swimming with your health visitor.