Teaching people to swim

Saving children and adults lives by teaching them to swim safely. That’s it and I love that I’m doing something that has a purpose and means maybe, maybe, it will save someone’s life one day.

I’m currently employed by Faversham pools in Kent as a swimming teacher covering one to one, group lessons and school classes of all abilities. In the main, we run one – to -one class which enable non-swimmers to learn to swim in a more relaxed environment than if in a group lesson.

I’ve worked at Hartsdown near Margate, Ramsgate and schools in Canterbury. I can’t seem to get to teach in Whitstable where I can see the pool from my house!

This has been a long journey and after coming home from serving in the Legion I trained as a lifeguard and then as a Level 2 swimming teacher working in South East London. I also ran a small swimming club at a school pool to teach people from all parts of the community to swim.

I had a very long career working through the technical revolution that is the internet, from the very beginning and moved to Whistable. I decided to go back to doing something I loved and retook my level 2 Swimming Teachers in 2019 on a course run by Jaqueline Burne and Elenore Purvis for Swim England. Qualification number 603/2574/4

If you want to see what I did for those 30 years and the people I worked with look at my LinkedIn profile

Faversham pools

This is a good place to learn to swim, with great teachers and a feeling of community. It is run as a charity for the community and here are a few shots of the pool and facilities.

Fun pools

Indoors pool

Outdoor pool, kept warm and clean

Wild swimming at Walpole Bay tidal pool

I love wild swimming. You can swim off any beach along the Kent coast, as I do at Tankerton or Whistable. But, we have Walpole Bay tidal pool near Margate and it’s the largest tidal pool in England. Ten ‘widths’ is 1 kilometre, easy to do and exhilarating.

This tidal pool gives safe outdoor swimming, paddleboarding and canoeing for all ages. It is a beautiful throwback to yesteryear that I hope will keep getting funding to keep it in operation for years to come.

I go there with my swimming buddy – as it’s great to swim in the wild with someone you like and it’s SAFER.

The pool, looking beautiful and radiant.

The pool, looking like it does most days! Yes, that’s the Channel in the background and it’s not sunny – but hey it’s England – so get over it. (the white bits near the water’s edge are bare rock, not pollution!)

It has a lovely beach and is a safe way for kids to experience swimming in the sea. Also, the rock pools on either side are great for watching all types of sea life.

The benefits of sea swimming are only now being studied with any seriousness. For me, it is a ‘break’ from whatever has been with you before you swim. This comes from the shock of the cold water and then focusing on breathing. It’s active meditation- you can’t think of anything else when you are swimming in cold seawater except the rhythm of your breathing – which is a fundamental part of meditation.

Go along and have fun but always do it in company as it’s so much safer.