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New research by Swim England, the governing body for swimming in England, found that the average child stops having swimming lessons at seven and a half years old, meaning 3.4 million youngsters are stopping lessons too early – a figure which has risen during the coronavirus pandemic.
That is in stark comparison to the 3.4 million youngsters who are stopping lessons too early – a figure which has risen during the coronavirus pandemic. They include being able to swim at least 100 metres without stopping, treading water for at least 30 seconds, experience swimming in clothing and being able to ‘float to live’ (performing a star float on their back for at least 30 seconds).The research also looked into how much time parents spend with their children in the pool. Nearly three-quarters (72%) said they hadn’t been swimming with their children in the last month or even longer.
To highlight the startling fact that so many youngsters are failing to meet swimming competencies post covid, we brought on board two experts in the field, Olympic gold medallist Duncan Goodhew and Jane Nickerson MBE, Swim England Chief Executive, to talk about Swim England’s ‘Learn to Swim’ programme.
The result? Our outreach drove coverage in 140 commercial stations across the UK and in top tier national outlets including Channel 5, BBC London TV, Sky News Radio and GB News. We also conducted interviews with a series of BBC regional outlets including BBC Radio Nottingham, BBC Radio Wiltshire, BBC Radio Somerset and BBC Radio Leicester.
In doing so, we got the nation talking about the importance of not only ensuring kids become competent swimmers, but how they can also enjoy the huge physical and mental health benefits that exercising in the water can bring.