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Swimming Pool

Swimming Sessions:

To avoid disappointment we recommend booking the swimming sessions in advance, we will accept walk-in customers but only if capacity allows us to.

Lane Swimming: Swimming for all ages and abilities.  *During these sessions the whole pool is dedicated to lane swimming, providing a total of six lanes.  We also have a selection of smaller lane sessions, alongside private sessions, providing just three lanes.

Public Swim: Swimming for all ages and abilities. *Learner pool is not available in this session. Three lanes are dedicated to lane swimming.alongside a general swim.

Family Swim: Swimming for all ages and abilities. * Main pool and learner pool available in this session. Three lanes are dedicated to lane swimming alongside a general swim.

Family  £3  Friday: Every Friday we will be continuing our we Family £3 swim sessions which means everyone aged 3+ will be able to swim for just £3. Session will run 1730 - 1900.  Please ensure you arrive at the start of the session to make the most of your time as the pool.

NOTE: These sessions are expected to be extremely busy so booking in advance is essential as there are limited spaces.

For online bookings click on the link or by calling our reception team on 01209 714766 option1.

Please note we will be unable to offer any changes or credit notes for these sessions if you cannot attend.


Double Trouble Inflatable - 

Take on the challenge of racing across our colourful Inflatable. These two-hour sessions run every 1st and 3rd Sunday of every month 14:00 - 16:00 and Wenesday throughout School Holidays.  We recommend booking in advance for these sessions.

Swim to music: *Only available at an evening aqua aerobic session until further notice*  -   Swim in our NEW 20m swimzone or leisure area alongside aqua aerobics (The swimzone is deep water only and laned).

*Carn Brea Leisure Centre reserves the right to amend sessions and swim space with short notice. 



Pool Policy

Child Admission Policy

  • Unaccompanied children under the age of 8 will not be permitted entry to any of the pools unless accompanied by a responsible person over the age of 16. 
  • One adult may accompany up to 2 children under the age of 8 to the main pool.  Children under the age of 5 should be accompanied on a 1:1 basis.
  • Children between 8 and 10 years of age must be able to swim 25 metres competently; otherwise they must be accompanied by a responsible person over the age of 16.
  • Children aged over 10 years will be admitted if unable to swim 25 metres, however they must stay in the shallow end and inform a Lifeguard.
  • Accompanying adults must not leave children under the age of 8 unattended or beyond eye contact.
  • One adult may accompany up to 2 children under the age of 5 or 4 children between the ages of 5 and 8 in the learner pool only.


Swimming Lessons

Our Swim School is one of the biggest in Cornwall, and our highly experienced Swimming Teachers provide the perfect platform for your child to learn confidence and competence in the water. Our group lessons run every day during term-time, with lessons available for children from just 3 months old!

In addition to group lessons we also offer:

  • One to one lessonsperfect for swimmers of all ages to improve technique, stamina and confidence.

  • Synchronised swimminga fantastic way to improve stamina, build confidence and encourage a sense of team spirit.

  • Water pologreat for developing flexibility, strength and stamina in the water, whilst encouraging a strong sense of team spirit.

  • RLSS Rookie Lifeguard – a fun and educational course offering children the opportunity to learn lifesaving skills with full qualified Instructors.

  • Adult Swimming lessons - The course is available in 6 week blocks and will help to get you water confident and working towards your personal goals​.

Swimming Lesson FAQs

At what age should my child learn to swim?

The earlier that a child experiences being in and around water the easier they will find it to develop their aquatic skills. The great thing about swimming is that you can introduce a baby to the water, and once they have developed their skills they can continue to access swimming for the rest of their life.

How long will it take for my child to learn to swim?

Like any new skill that we learn, different people take different amounts of time, and find some skills easier to learn than others. If your child experiences more time in the swimming pool environment outside of lessons there is a high probability that they will progress much quicker, as they will have additional opportunities to practice. In the early phase their confidence can also be greatly increased by being surrounded by friends and family in the water.

What does my child need to wear for swimming lessons?

Your child will need appropriate swimwear - for girls ideally a one piece costume is recommended; tank top swim costumes can be used but swimwear with tie ups should be avoided. For boys ideally trunks or tight fitting shorts. Board shorts can actually make it a lot harder for children to learn to swim as they increase the resistance in the water.

Should my child wear goggles?

Goggles are optional. Some children may prefer to wear goggles in the pool, and for other children, if they have prescription goggles or wear contacts, it is essential. If goggles are worn please ensure your child can safely put them on themselves.

Does my child need to wear a swimming cap?

It is not compulsory to wear a swim cap in Swim School lessons, but it can be beneficial and can improve your child's swimming experience. Long hair is heavy, and can make swimming more difficult, and, if your child is working on breathing and head rotation, it can make it very difficult for them to take a breath. We recommend that you braid long hair or pull the hair back into a ponytail if not wearing a swim cap.

What about equipment?

Carn Brea Swim School will provide any equipment required during the lessons such as buoyancy aids, toys and floats.

Can my child eat before swimming?

Just like any other exercise, you wouldn't want to feed your child a large meal just before getting into the water. It's fine to have a small snack before class, as long as they have had at least 20 minutes to digest it.

What if my child cries or is afraid?

It's very common for a child to cry or be afraid when starting something new. All teachers will be trained to deal with the most fearful of students, and there should always be someone on hand to assist if necessary. We recommend the use of simple distraction techniques; toys, songs and games to help calm and reassure them, and we will never dunk a new swimmer under the water. A child may cry for several weeks in a row, but be patient. Consistency and praise are key in your child's progress. If you need help getting your child into the pool, please ask our staff for assistance and be sure to let us know any information that will help us get to know your child better.  

We would recommend that you take your child to the pool where they are having lessons prior to the lesson so that they are familiar with the environment and the more often you can take them to the pool before commencing lessons the easier they will find the transition into learning new skills. At worst case scenario where your child doesn’t seem to settle a credit for the remanding number of lessons will be credited to your child’s account to use in future term.

What should my child do to get ready for their session?

Before their session they should change into their swimwear using the appropriate changing facilities, go to the toilet, remove any jewellery and have a shower to rinse off any dirt on their body – remember, the swimming pool is to be enjoyed by many people and all users need to display high levels of personal hygiene whilst using the facility. Ideally children should be familiar with the environment, know where their lesson will be taking place, and also where the accompanying adult will be during the lesson for reassurance. Parents of children under the age of 8 years must remain in the building throughout the lessons. Children should only come onto poolside 5 minutes before the start of their class and parents should be waiting to collect their children 5mins before the end of the lessons at the entrance onto poolside or in the changing rooms.  It's important for parents to be visual so children can easily locate their parent/guardian after their swimming lesson.

What if my child is unwell or can’t attend lessons?

Use your best judgment, but if your child has flu-like symptoms such as a fever, vomiting or has stomach or digestion problems, you should not bring them to class. We are unable to offer refunds or credits for any lessons missed unless a medical note is provided. It is the parent’s responsibility to inform/update the centre of any medical conditions that the child may have which, would affect the child’s performance whilst attending swimming lessons.  Due to your booking being for the full term and therefore reserved for you for that duration, we are unable to credit or refund any holidays booked during that term.

How is my child assessed?

Each stage in the Learn to Swim pathway has around ten goals. Your child will need to perform each of these goals three times so that the teacher is confident in their abilities. The teacher will record what your child has achieved each week.

How is my child rewarded?

The Learn to Swim Framework outcomes should be continually assessed as your child attends lessons. There should not be a final assessment, however to progress into the next level all outcomes need to be achieved competently and consistently. As your child progresses through the programme their achievements will be rewarded with different awards in the form of badges and certificates, which can be purchased at reception.

Private or group lessons?

Carn Brea Leisure Centre offers group lessons and individual one to one lessons. It is up to you which option you choose, but there will be differences in price.  It will also depend on your child as to what method of delivery will enable them to thrive.

Group lessons offer children another opportunity to increase their social interaction with different children that they do not necessarily go to school with and to learn and develop from.
One to one lessons can be useful where there is a specific skill or outcome that they are finding difficult.

How many children will be in the group?

The recommendation for non-swimmers and beginners, young children, (normally of primary school age) or adults learning to swim is that a pupil: teacher ratio should not exceed 12:1. This is taken from the ASA Safe Supervision for Teaching and Coaching swimming document.  Carn Brea Learn to swim ratios are:

Parent & Baby = 1:8           
Toddlers = 2:6                    
Stage 1 = 2:8 (less confident swimmers) 
Stages 2 & 3 = 1:8            
Stages 5/7 = 1:10  once they are in our lanes it can go up to 16:1           

As you can see our ratios are below recommendation, ensuring pupils get maximum potential out of our lessons.

Disability inclusion

Lessons can be adapted as necessary to help all children achieve their potential. If your child has specific needs please discuss them with the Activities Manager so the best decision can be made to meet your child’s needs.


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