Haden Hill Swimming Club

Carol Sidaway from Haden Hill Swimming Club in Cradley Heath helped the club to implement the National Plan for Teaching Swimming (NPTS). Her tips for success? Do not think the changes will happen over night, it is a relative long process, so do not get disillusioned. Learn more…

Carol is happy to discuss Hadan Hill Swimming Club’s experience of implementing the NPTS via email: pj.motors@btinternet.com or by phone on 01384 287229. Before doing so, you may wish to read her following comments about the process.

How did you find out about the new NPTS?

The publication in the Swimming Times

Were you implementing the NPTS 1997 edition?


When did you start to implement the NPTS 2007 edition?

November 2007

How easy was it to purchase your NPTS pack?

Easy - over the phone

Do you think it is good value for money?

Yes---It would have been better if the DVD had been available from the start & the distance stroke awards certificates & cloth badges.

Did you attend any CPD training and if “yes” how did you find out about the courses and were they useful?

NPTS Overview                                                 Yes

NPTS FUNdamentals                                      Yes

NPTS mini-polo!                                                No

NPTS Flip n Fun                                                No

NPTS AquaFun                                                  No

NPTS Competitive Development                   Yes

Others: Our NPTS is headed by a qualified Club Coach with over 20 years experience in swimming.

Please detail the resources used to help you implement the new NPTS?

The DVD of Standards-- One for each of our Teacher. Registers, Parents letter, Badges.

What other resources would you like the ASA to develop as a priority?

1. Computer program to record achievements.

2. Record of achievement for swimmers to purchase.

3. A DVD we could have used to explain to parents the structure of the NPTS.

How did you action plan for implementation and would you do anything differently?

Meeting to present the NPTS to all Teachers/admin staff,

(1) Staff Presentation of New pool lay out with regard to NPTS

(2) Staff discussion on each stage of NPTS. 

(3) Staff agreeing how & when to Grade all swimmers.

(4) Staff group discussion on the Standards DVD.

(5) Staff presented with New folder for poolside.

(6) Staff agreed when to present NPTS to parents.

What were the main skills gaps areas with the swimmers when you transferred and how did you overcome these?

We graded each group at the stage below their ability to enable us to grade them more quickly, this made it easier/quicker for them to achieve success and gain confidence in the New NPTS.

Did you have any difficulties with any areas of the syllabus (please specify) and was your RBM able to help provide a solution?

Some swimmers found it hard to gain stage 4 Breast stroke leg kick - to try and overcome this each of the swimmers were highlighted for extra help. This is still ongoing with some swimmers.

Based on your experience is there anything you would have done differently?

Yes - I would now have had official assessment nights where Teachers could have worked in pairs to help with the grading as we found that larger groups took a lot longer to grade initially then others less smaller groups. Some parents/swimmers found this frustrating.

Are there any best practice examples within your implementation that you could share with others?

Teachers meetings and long discussions of what and where we wanted to go, also a Standardisation of acceptable standards, agreeing a time plan setting targets for progression of Teachers and swimmers towards completion of the implementation of The NPTS. We did not present the plan to parents until all the Teachers were fully confident of working within its content.

Do you feel you received sufficient help from the ASA? How can we improve the service the ASA give you?

Every pack that goes out should be followed with a letter of introduction from the county swimming co-ordinator requesting a courtesy visit. Possible follow up e-mails so that clubs etc feel they are not alone with any problems.

Please could you detail if you are currently using or considering using any of the other ASA awards eg- Swim a Song/ Distance Badges?

We use the following Awards: Duckling, NPTS, 1-10 / Distance stroke awards, Rainbow Distance Awards. / Pre - competition Development Level 1. / Pre-Competition Development L2. / Preliminary Competitive Start Award. / Competitive Start Award.

Are there any other comments you would like to add at this stage?

Do not think the changes will happen over night, it is a relative long process, so do not get disillusioned.

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