Welcome to Plymouth Leander's Learn to Swim Programme

Plymouth Leander is one of Britain’s top swimming clubs possessing an impressive track record at all levels of competition from junior meets through to the Olympic Games. Start your swimming journey with Little Leander.

Little Leander

… operates from two wonderful venues in Plymouth – stunning 25 metre swimming pools await you at both Plymouth College and Marjon University. We pride ourselves in being able to take your child from the very early stages of learning to swim, right through to becoming a club swimmer at Plymouth Leander. When the time comes to decide on continuing your swimming, we are able to seamlessly transition you from Little Leander to Plymouth Leander.

What to Expect

Swimming is a life skill and the only sport your child will learn which could save their life. When embarking on the swimming journey with your child remember that it is not only important for them to learn the basics during the early stages, but also to progress to the advanced groups where they will become strong swimmers – serving them well in later years. Beginner classes focus on water safety, learning to swim and developing strokes. Improver classes focus on learning the 4 strokes and using the correct techniques for these strokes. Squad class children will perfect the basics of all 4 strokes, focus on correct starts and turns while improving their stamina and fitness.

Your teacher will move your child up to the next stage when they can see that the swimmer is ready and confident at doing the skills that are set out for that level. This means that children will repeat skills over and over again each week until they perfect them. We won’t rush the transition and we will not push swimmers up to the next level until we are satisfied. If your child is swimming in a group, don’t compare them with other children. Stay focused on letting your child learn at their own speed.

Lessons Offered

All group lessons are 30 minutes long. We are proud to offer small group sizes,  giving each teacher more time to support your child while they build confidence and gain the early skills. The Beginner 1 groups have 4 swimmers, while all other stage groups have 6 swimmers.

The 1:1 lessons are either 15 minutes or 30 minutes long. 15-minute lessons are more than adequate for 3-5 year olds. If, however your child is older than 5 and you feel that 30 minutes would be too much you are more than welcome to choose a 15-minute lesson.

Find your Level

Refer to our flow chart below. The questions below relate to the hardest skill on each of the stages, if your swimmer is able to do the skill you can progress to the next question, If your swimmer is not able to do the skill you should not advance to the next question.


Certificates & Progression

We have developed certificates to match the 6 stages of our swimming programme. Beginner 1 & 2, Improver 1, 2 & 3 and Squad. The achievements in each certificate take the swimmer on a journey right from their very first lesson through to advanced swimming with correct technique. When completed, your child will not only know how to swim, but will also be strong and capable swimmers with beautiful strokes.

Choose a Location

Marjon University

Plymouth College

Frequently Asked Questions

Payment is due at the start of each new block of lessons. Should you join mid-way through you will only be charged for the remaining lessons in the block. Fees will be debited automatically via our online payment system using the bank card you have provided us during enrolment.

The time and class you occupy in a particular block will roll on block after block, there is no need to rebook your lessons you will automatically retain your swimming time. If, however you wish to stop swimming 1 months’ notice is required, should no notice be given 1 month’s fees will be payable (4 lessons). This “roll on” will also apply over the summer break with swimmers retaining their slot from July to September, unless of-course you’ve told us otherwise.

At the beginning stages of a young swimmer there are many ways that you can help them along. This will aid both their confidence and progression.

  • Practice putting their faces in the water in a bath, they can use their goggles to look at anything under the water from bath toys to coins.
  • Take your children swimming and let them play and get their faces wet. You do not have to “make them swim”, just playing in the water will make them stronger.
  • Encourage them to kick with their legs out behind them rather than “cycling” upright in the water. This is a very bad habit that young children get into and can be hard to break.
  • Always encourage them to put their faces in the water, this helps your swimming teacher enormously.

Please log your absence via the Parent Portal before the lesson has started, the earlier the better, you can log an absence any time in the future within the current block. Logging your absence lets your teacher know you won’t be there.

A swimming hat is compulsory, keeping hair out of your eyes and the pool filters are just 2 important reasons for wearing one, we also recommend a pair of quality goggles. Bring your own or chose a new hat and goggles at the welcome desk on your first lesson.

Upon joining Little Leander, each swimmer will be charged a £13.60 annual membership fee to belong to Swim England. The registration period runs from January to December. This annual fee provides the swimmer with vital personal insurance and is part of our compliance as a registered swim mark swimming club.

The most convenient area to change is the changing village as there are no restrictions.

Boys and Girls aged 8 and under may use either the male or female change rooms. Adults accompanying them must use the appropriate changing room, i.e. a female accompanying a male child aged 8 and under must use the female changing room, a male accompanying a female aged 8 and under must use the male changing room. Children aged nine and over must use the appropriate changing room, i.e. girls into the female changing room and boys into the male changing room and may only be accompanied by an adult of the same gender.

Please make sure that all swimmers use the loo, blow noses and shower before lessons. All swimmers, both boys and girls are to wear swimming caps – this is compulsory.