A toothbrush is sitting on a wooden table

What do I need to start swimming lessons?

September 30, 2012

Back in June or July of this year, I added Roo’s name to the waiting list at our local swimming club. I was told by some parents that the waiting list was very long and that I would probably have to wait until the new year before Roo received a place. So I was pleasantly surprised when I received a call towards the end of August letting me know that there was a place available for Roo to start in the next few weeks. I was offered a choice of two sessions and confirmed Roo’s details and our address.

As I had confirmed our address details I assumed that we’d receive a welcome pack in the post. Hopefully confirming how much and when payment etc needed to be paid. Alongside equipment required for the lessons, however, this welcome pack never materialised.

A toothbrush is sitting on a wooden table

What do you need for swimming lessons?

So I went off in search of information and guidance on equipment recommendations for swimming lessons. After browsing through the Simply Swim website I felt so much better as they have everything you need under one roof (so to speak).


Whilst Roo has a perfectly good Hello Kitty swimsuit I really wanted her to have a quality swimwear to wear for her lessons. So after looking at all the options I opted for Speedo, a well known and much-trusted brand.

Swimming Caps

I was unaware that some swimming pools now insist on you wearing a swimming cap. This I believe is to relieve pressures on their filter systems. As Roo’s lessons are in the local high school swimming pool I asked another aren’t who confirmed that they refer children to wear swimming hats.

I can remember having to put talc inside my own swimming hats in order to get them on when I was at school. When searching for swimming caps I pleased to see that times had indeed evolved. You can get a fabulous range if colours as well as some funky designs too. As Roo loves pink I knew that the Speedo silicone bright cap in pink would be the best choice.


Now, there is some debate as to whether children should wear goggles when learning to swim. I can see the argument from both sides, children should be encouraged to get their faces splashed and under water etc. However, for some children, the idea of water in their face would most certainly put them off swimming. Roo is somewhere in the middle, she doesn’t particularly like water splashed in her face (much to the amusement if Tigger) so I was unsure as to whether to get her goggles or not. In the end, I thought that if it gives her the confidence boost she needs to start with then it’s worth buying them.

To continue with the pink theme I needed to try and find pink goggles. After speaking with some parent I was told the best goggles were Aqua Sphere Seal Kid goggles. Thankfully these are available in clear, blue and my much-needed pink.

Towel vs Poncho

When I take the children swimming I am always conscience that when we get out of the pool to wrap them up warm before getting changed. Whilst a towel will do this job there are downsides to them. They slip down if wrapped up like a mummy their shoulders are exposed etc. So when thinking about getting Roo a towel for swimming I opted for a Poncho towel. She can then simply slip over her head and is snuggly whilst I am getting her clothes etc ready. Also, it will be a lovely place to display her swimming badges.

Zoggs have a gorgeous Ellis Poncho towel and it available in blue or pink. A functional yet funky poncho to keep warm in.

Storage bag

Whilst its great having the swimwear, hat, goggles and poncho but how I am going to keep all this stuff together and store Roo’s clothes whilst she is in the pool? Aqua Sphere has a great solution with their Deck Bag. Large enough to store not only Roo’s swimming kit and clothes but also any floats or foam pads as well.

Armbands & floats

I was unsure whether Roo would  be required to take her own armbands or floats with her to her lessons so decided on the wait and see approach. I have however got my eye on a couple of pieces that I can purchase should she need to bring her own.

Swimming Facts

  • 1 in 3 children say swimming is their favourite family activitySwimming the facts
  • Children who have taken baby swimming classes have been shown to do better in gripping, reaching and balance tests than those who haven’t 
  • Drowning is the third most common cause of accidental death in children
  • 1 in 5 children leave school unable to swim

Disclosure: I received swimwear items in order to complete this post. I have full editorial rights and was not instructed what to include.

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