The stages of superstar swimmers

GO Gateshead swimming lessons teach children the skills they need to be confident and safe in the water. Throughout our programme they'll go from developing movement to becoming competent swimmers in all of the four strokes, picking up plenty of free badges and certificates along the way.


Adult and baby/toddler/child

Age: Birth to 3 years

Becoming happy in water and developing movement with a range of musical games and fun activities for parents/carers and little ones. 

Awards: Discovery Ducklings, Ducklings 1-2, I CAN awards.


Age: 4 years

Here is where children will prepare for the main stages, swimming independently in a small group with the teacher in the water.

Awards: Ducklings 3-4, I CAN awards

Stage 1

Getting faces wet and moving around for a distance of five metres without floatation. Children will also begin to learn pool rules and how to exit the water safely.


Stage 2

Jumping safely into the pool, blowing bubbles, gliding and travelling using recognised leg actions. Parents and carers will start to see a little swimmer in the making.

Additional awards: Puffin, Rainbow Distance 5m


Stage 3

Jumping in progresses to jumping and submerging. Kids will learn how to push off, glide and travel for a distance of 10 metres on back and front. They'll also be able to answer water safety questions and exit the pool safely, without steps.

Additional awards: Water Safety 1, Rainbow Distance 10m


Stage 4

Performing a sequence of changing shapes whilst floating, kicking 10 metres in different strokes, and log rolls from front to back and back to front, help to introduce swimming variety.

Additional awards: Rainbow Stroke Front Crawl and Back Stroke 5m and 10m


Stage 5

Performing sculls, pushing, gliding and swimming to 10 metres and treading water for 30 seconds help to build strength and improve technique in the water. Forward somersaults, handstands and jumping into the water in different shapes add to the fun of this stage.

Additional awards: Water Safety 2, Rainbow Stroke 5m Butterfly and Breast Stroke 5m and 10m


Stage 6

Swimming 10 metres fully clothed, and pushing, gliding and swimming for 25 metres are the big tasks at this stage. Kids will also work on preparing for exercise and rhythmic breathing.

Additional awards: Rainbow Distance 20/25m.


Stage 7

By now you've got a real swimmer on your hands. They'll be pushing, gliding and swimming 25 metres in all four strokes, swimming 50 metres in one continuous stroke and - the big one - swimming 100 metres in a minimum of three different strokes.

Additional awards: Water Safety 3, Rainbow Stroke Front Crawl/Back Stroke/Breast Stroke/Butterfly 25m.

Swim Challenge

For swimmers that have completed Stage 7, Swim Challenge offers a chance to continue swimming in a relaxed coached environment.

Awards: Swim Challenge Bronze/Silver/Gold/Honours.


Rookie Lifeguard

For swimmers who have completed Stage 7, Rookie Lifeguard offers a chance to learn more in depth water safety, personal survival and rescue skills.

Awards: Bronze 1/2/3, Silver 1/2/3, Gold 1/2/3

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