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Leamington Spa Swimming Club celebrate continued swim21 success

Leamington Spa Swimming Club in Warwickshire is celebrating its continuing success as part of the swim21 scheme – the national benchmark for excellence from the ASA, the national governing body for swimming and aquatic disciplines in England.

The club, which achieved accreditation for the second time in December 2010, attributed much of its success to the swim21 online process.

They were one of the first clubs in the West Midlands to use the online system and achieved the swim21 award for Swimming at Teaching and Skill Development level.

As the club had a new committee, they understandably felt a little apprehensive about the swim21 application process and the masses of paperwork that may be involved.

However, they were relieved to hear about the online accreditation process and claimed to find it incredibly easy to follow.

“The swim21 system is really easy to use and so flexible in that it allows you to build up and improve your submission gradually over a period of time,” said Jill Wharfe, swim21 Coordinator at Leamington Spa SC.

“Working electronically is very helpful when Committee members are spread over a wide geographical area and are not always able to meet up in person.

“What’s more, loading all of the required evidence onto our own secure page of the swim21 website not only meant that we could cut down on all the paper, but it also made the whole exercise a work in progress.”

The online system has also proven to be a useful club management tool, providing the club with a virtual information resource which allows for updates to be made, as required, throughout the accreditation cycle.  

It has also made the club re-evaluate some of their structures and processes, and they ultimately believe that the club is stronger as a result of their accreditation.

Jill said, “swim21 accreditation has given the club a solid platform from which to develop, secure in the knowledge that we have the right structures and processes in place to make Leamington a high quality club.

“The system has also left us with a useful legacy in that all our key documents are now held electronically in a single location through the swim21 website.”

Following the swim21 accreditation process, communication with swimmers and parents has been improved by the club through a range of strategies, including review meetings, presentations and a new website.

The club now has a comprehensive personnel record, making it easier to see the range of qualifications held by teachers and coaches, and to identify when CRBs are due for renewal.

Professional development has also increased, as the club has responded to the requirements of accreditation and subsequently benefited from the funding available to swim21 clubs.

swim21 accreditation is the ASA’s ‘Quality Mark’ for clubs and the ASA’s way of ensuring every athlete – whatever their age or level of experience – belongs to a club that provides the best possible support and environment.

Specifically it is about putting the swimmers first and ensuring young athletes are following the pathway the ASA recognises for training and competition (via the principles of Long Term Athlete Development).

Click here for further information about swim21 Club Accreditation.

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