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Artistic swimming FAQ

Q: What is artistic swimming?

A: Formerly known as synchronised swimming, artistic swimming is a hybrid form of swimming, dance and gymnastics. Artistic swimming is an Olympic sport, a fun recreational activity as well as a popular form of performance art for entertainment. Many of the basic moves and techniques enhance swimming and water safety skills such as breath control, sculling and the most energy efficient form of treading water, eggbeater. Artistic swimming can be done as a single, in a pair or within a team.


Q: Do I need to have had a background in artistic swimming to complete the online courses?

A: No. As long as you have a background in swimming teaching and have your teacher qualifications, you will be able to take the artistic swimming online courses to further enhance your swimming teaching career.


Q: What are the benefits to the participants in doing artistic swimming?

A: Participants will enhance their swimming skills and improve their ability to be safe in the water. There is a big focus on sculling, body balance and breath control as well as becoming stronger in their general swimming strokes. They will benefit from improved water safety skills such as underwater bearings, learning eggbeater as a more energy efficient form of treading water and breath control.


Artistic swimming is a mainly team activity, which has many mental health benefits for both children and adults. It allows people to be creative in the water, which suits some people more than lane swimming up and down.  Artistic swimming improves fitness and introduces new skills for retaining simple choreography sequences. The courses are progressive so you can work towards the five certificates we have created for the children to achieve.


Q: How old do my class participants need to be to take part in artistic swimming?

A: Some artistic swimming skills can start being taught alongside learn to swim skills at an early age, so you will be able introduce some for young beginners. However, we recommend anyone from the age of six upwards can start learning the basic skills and teamwork involved.


Q: As a swimming teacher, what are the benefits of learning to teach artistic swimming?

A: It allows you to offer a wider range of activities within your swimming lessons and courses to your employer or your swim school which makes your teaching services more attractive to them. If you own your own swim school, you will be able to offer a wider range of lessons and increase your revenue streams. Due to artistic swimming being so different from general swimming, you may retain older children within your swimming classes rather than them leave once they have learnt to swim. It offers a wider choice of skills and techniques that will help improve general swimming and water safety skills. It’s perfect to teach young people and adults alike, great for all communities and offers a water based alternative to traditional dance orientated classes and group activities.


Q: Can boys participate in artistic swimming?

A: Of course! In our experience EVERYONE loves having a go at artistic swimming. There are somersaults, handstands and lots of underwater skills, which we have found many boys enjoy doing. Everyone loves to get involved with the simple sequences and creating movements in water that they don't often get the opportunity to do.  Men do compete at many world events now in artistic swimming and hopefully soon they will be able to compete at the Olympic Games.


Q: What do the courses cover?

A: The first course, Experience, covers the basic skills of artistic swimming including body balance, sculling, stroke creativity, eggbeater and team work. The second course, Explore and Expression, further explores artistic swimming and encourages participants to express themselves and create in water.


Q: How long do the courses take to complete?

A: The beauty of these online courses with the STA, is that you can complete them in your own time. Either in one go or in stages, whatever suits you. To take all in one go, you would expect them to take around two hours each to complete.


Q: Is there further support on offer once I have completed a course?

A: Yes. Each course comes with six downloadable lesson plans, as well as continuous access to the course and videos for you to check back on. We also have a Facebook group community for you to ask questions and be a part of. Plus, we have videos and blogs on our website that we continually update to help you as well.


Q: Is it difficult to learn to teach artistic swimming?

A: No. We take you through a simple guide, showing you videos of what the movement or skill should look like and break it down into simple steps of how to teach it. We demonstrate a wide variety of new drills and tips to help you on your way, especially when it comes to how to be creative in water, which may be very new to some teachers. 


Q: The Explore and Expression course has sequences and choreography involved, but I’ve never choreographed anything before?

A: We have kept this very simple and all you are doing is building a sequence of moves and transitions and putting them together. You will already know the movements and skills, and we break it down to show you how to piece them together to make one continuous sequence either with individual swimmers, as a pair or as a team.


Q: How much are they?

A: Each individual course is £35 or you can buy both courses together as a bundle for £60 - saving yourself £10.


Q: Do the artistic swimming online courses carry CPD points?

A: Yes. The artistic swimming online courses are worth ½ an STA CPD point and 1 CIMPSA development point each. Or if you take the bundle that is worth 1 STA point and 2 CIMPSA developmental points.


Q: I don’t live in the UK, can I still take these online courses?

A: Yes. For anyone in the US you can purchase our artistic swimming courses through Starfish Aquatics Institute.

For anyone elsewhere, please contact us if you are unable to access the courses online and we will assist you with your purchase.

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