Take a look at what our swimmers have to say about Swimming Matters…

Mike, “child-like to shark like”

I swim regularly but my technique was awful and hadn’t changed since school…Because of my poor technique, my back, shoulders and neck would ache after swimming so I knew I couldn’t continue like that.

I now swim at least 3 times a week, probably swimming at least half a mile each session. Having these lessons has been like being introduced to a whole new sport. I find swimming far easier and enjoyable now.

In June 2010, I completed a mile open water swim (all front crawl) and am seriously thinking about taking up triathlon. Swimming has gone from being a bit of a chore to my favourite sport now.

The time goes quickly, and most of the time I enjoy them. I’m a lot more confident.  I don’t mind putting my head in the water now and I can swim with less effort than before. Lucy has a real skill of understanding what needs to change and how to do it, without making it obvious.  Instead of saying Don’t do that, you say Try this.  That’s the sign of a great teacher. Thank you!!


I wanted to learn to swim as I think it is one of the best exercises.  I also wanted to challenge myself, as I know I am not comfortable in the water. I had a lot of fun learning to swim, which is credit to Lucy making the sessions enjoyable and helping me to overcome my aversion to water.

I needed to learn how to do front crawl properly for my first triathlon…I could swim but breaststroke was all that I could do.  I did think swimming lessons were just for people who couldn’t swim at all but on reflection if you want to improve your gym sessions you get a personal trainer so why not get a swimming instructor to improve your swimming!

Before the lessons I never really incorporated it into my exercise routine but I try to swim at least once a week as part of my fitness training.  I’ve also found that it is a great way to tone my arms and legs without adding bulk as well as being a good thing to do to keep my fitness up after an injury or when I can’t face a run on a hot day.

I would say that Swimming Matters listen to people’s requirements and goals and are able to tailor sessions to the individual.  If you were looking to improve their swimming I would advise you to give them a call even if you just did a couple of sessions you would come away feeling more confident.


Within the space of 4 lessons lucy managed to take me from being completely useless at front crawl to being able to complete 20 lengths. She made it both challenging and enjoyable. I have no hesitation in recommending her.


I fractured my foot running and was advised by my Consultant to take up swimming as an alternative exercise. I thought it would be useful as a form of cross training and for an upcoming holiday I had booked. I find swimming an effective form of exercise that doesn’t put pressure on my joints. I also found it a little embarrassing that as an adult I didn’t know how to swim.

I thought the lessons would be similar to school with drills and whistles. I was pleased to find out that the lessons were more relaxed than that. It’s not like School, there is no competition, no humiliation. Just encouragement.

I feel like a confident swimmer now, when I had been to swimming pools in the past I would always look at the lane swimmers with envy. I felt self conscious and a little like a fraud for even being in the pool. I couldn’t swim with my head submerged at all, now I can and butterfly. I am so grateful to Lucy for teaching me how to swim, I have now incorporated it into my lifestyle and exercise regime.

I would highly recommend Lucy, she is patient, supportive and knowledgeable. Her lessons suit any level of swimmer. Every time I see a big expanse of water now I want to jump in it and go for a swim.


My only previous experience of swimming lessons was, like most people’s, from my days at school. I expected something like this; authoritative and impersonal. The lessons were completely different to how I expected. I was quite nervous before the first lesson but felt a whole lot better afterwards; the lessons are fun and interesting, as is the teacher!

We were most impressed with the friendliness and the personal approach Swimming Matters use, so I always feel like my concerns are being addressed. The variation of techniques and sets keeps things interesting, and I always feel like I’ve done a good amount of exercise afterwards.

Before I started the lessons, swimming was something I liked the idea of, but in practice didn’t enjoy all that much because I wasn’t any good at it. Since then my swimming has improved immeasurably, and because of this so has my enjoyment of it. I don’t get frustrated and worn out any more; nowadays I get a buzz out of swimming. I don’t believe for a second we could have found a better teacher, and its a credit to Swimming Matters that a non sporty person like me could get so much enjoyment from exercise!

Chris, from self confessed Labrador to dolphin!

I was looking for a way of keeping fit which did not involve going to the gym (very boring!). I was already confident in the water but needed to improve technique and build stamina. I feel my swimming technique has been transformed (even breast stroke is coming along!). Stamina has improved as a result with 20-25 lengths in a half hour session being regularly achieved (previously it would be about 6!). I feel I have reached a good standard and plan to use swimming as my main source of exercise (all I need is a bit more spare time!).

Lucy will definitely sort out your swimming technique. The sessions will push you and raise your overall swimming potential and personal standard significantly. I look forward to our weekly sessions. They are hard work but great fun, and I get a real sense of personal achievement from them.


I always wanted to swim in a pool or on the beach but never had the confidence as I didn’t learn to swim as a child. I did go for lessons in the past but could never get over my fear of the water. But in the summer last year I thought I must try learning again and so I signed up with Lucy.

I didn’t even know how to float and thought I’d sink. But since going for my swimming lessons, I can now do a proper front crawl, float on my back and learning how to breast stroke. I am now fully confident in doing front crawl. I do try and go swimming during the week in addition to my lessons and for the first time in my life was able to go swimming when I went on holiday.

I always look forward to my lessons every week. I am amazed how quickly I have learnt to swim and Lucy has changed the process from something which would have normally been quite daunting into something enjoyable and easy.


I originally hoped to learn the front crawl only in my lessons with Lucy, a stroke which I have never been able to master. In a few weeks I had gained a massive improvement in this and can now confidently do many lengths of front crawl- no mean feat considering where I started from.

Also she gave me some great pointers for my breast stroke which I thought was pretty ok but Lucy helped me speed up greatly when swimming this way, so that was an excellent added bonus. She was helpful and clear during all the lessons (without being too bossy!) and was always willing to be flexible with lesson structure and direction. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend her coaching to anyone!


The main reason I started lessons was that I had always wanted to take scuba diving lessons, but the small detail of not being able to swim made it impossible to do that. I had always thought about taking swimming lessons but thought I was to old, but a chance meeting with Lucy changed that.

She told me about the group sessions and the individual ones and she was so enthusiastic it was infectious. I thought the lessons would be very difficult, I thought the technique part would be like School days the teacher on the side trying to show us how to do the breast stroke legs. So Lucy being able to get into the pool and show me firstly how to get my body in the right position to float, gliding exercises. Also the sheer amount of different drills and exercises, and the way strokes were broken down and put back together, was amazing. I enjoyed putting the separate drills back together towards the end of sessions, to see how far I had progressed from the beginning. I started May 2009, in November did my scuba pool sessions, in March 2010 I did my open water scuba and went snorkelling in Indonesia.

Well worth the money, highly trained competitive swimmer who still competes, knows all the little tricks to improve your skills. Really pushes you and doesn’t let you cheat yourself when it comes to that last length.


I’d been wanting to go swimming for a long time, but hadn’t been for years. I could swim a bit, but only enough to get me across to the other side of the pool comfortably, and I was never quite sure I was doing it ‘right’.

The only other lessons I’d had before were in the first year of High School, which weren’t useful at all because there were quite stressful having someone hollering at you when you can’t swim all that well, and felt like you were half drowning! Lucy’s lessons weren’t like that at all though. Lucy was very understanding, patient and friendly, and because she was so approachable it was easier to communicate any problems and concerns.

To my amazement, I felt myself progressing each week, and able to cope with each new session. I felt like I had achieved more than I expected I ever would, and, even though I found them tough, I loved the feeling of accomplishment after the lesson was over, which made me want to get back in the pool each week.

I’m really pleased I decided to start the lessons as I’ve gained so much more from them than I ever imagined. I’ve got out of them exactly what I wanted, which is the ability to swim again, and the confidence this has given me, enabling to get into a public pool by myself for the first time in my life!


I used to go swimming a lot as a kid and haven’t really swam since and I really wanted to start up again and improve as I was never really taught any techniques etc. I wasn’t really sure what to expect from the lessons and I was slightly worried that I had forgotten everything.

The sessions are/can be hardwork but very enjoyable.  Lucy is a great teacher, very patient and helpful. For me it’s great that the lessons are in the evening (after work) it has become a great way for me to de-stress after a hard day in work, I always leave feeling great, even after a hard swim session.

I feel my swimming has improved a lot and I’m more confident going swimming, whether to the lessons or to my local pool.  When I first started I was quite slow and wasn’t 100% as to what I was doing or whether what I was doing was right, but now I’m more sure of myself and noticing when I’m doing something wrong and can try to correct myself.  Also I have noticed that I can swim a lot longer with out having to stop to catch my breath.


I had taken group swimming lessons before, but not really made much progress in my confidence in swimming. I thought that I’d benefit more from one to one tuition, so decided to give it a try.

The lessons are very good as they are tailored towards my needs and the areas I’d like to improve in. There is no rush to get things right first time. It is a relaxing and friendly way to learn to swim, which helps me to learn more.

I’m much more confident now, and I don’t have to psyche myself up so much to be able to do it. I’m now able to try more things such as back stroke and underwater swimming.


Lucy helped me prepare for a one mile open water swim. Lessons were fun, she quickly improved my technique and her advice and support were invaluable.


I started swimming lessons to improve my technique which with the front crawl was pretty none existent. I could feel the difference after only one lesson and now understand the different strokes which Lucy explained in really interesting ways. She helped source relevant equipment (I now have optical goggles which I couldn’t live without) and also pointed me to sources of information on the web. Following the lessons I regularly swim 2 – 3 times a week and am confident that I am swimming correctly and look the part.

Lucy is an excellent teacher and very patient. I enjoyed myself so much I recommended a couple of friends who also had lessons.


Having been petrified of swimming since I was a child I decided that at 43 enough was enough. A friend recommended Lucy to me and I was astonished to find that within my first half hour lesson I was able to breathe with my face in the water without any fear whatsoever. Five lessons later I feel that I can swim competently and confidently. I thought I would feel self conscious and anxious but Lucy’s style of teaching is so reassuring and encouraging. I never felt under any pressure to do something I was uncomfortable with. I can’t recommend her highly enough and am looking forward to putting my new skills into use.


My husband and I planned a trip to Australia for our joint 50th birthdays and I could not go there and miss out on snorkelling on the Great Barrier Reef.  It was time to bite the bullet and learn to swim.

I had tried a few times to swim in a group but had been forced to do things I did not like our feel comfortable with so I had given up.  I hoped on a one to one basis this was going to be different. Lucy was a breath of fresh air.  The first thing she taught me to do was to breathe properly in the water.  Something no-one had ever done before! I felt relaxed almost straight away in the water.  I did things at my own pace and she has a wonderful approach that has you doing things without realising it. Each week I learnt something different about what I could do in the water and when it finally clicked it was amazing

When I first started I could not take my feet off the floor for more than a couple of strokes and even then I had to swim towards something.  My aim very quickly became that when I got into that pool I want to swim away and by the fifth lesson I could.  It was an amazing feeling.  I can’t imagine not swimming now and instead of dreading coming to lessons I found myself not able to wait to get in the water.  I now enjoy getting into the pool on holiday with my husband and swimming together for the first time in 23 years.  It is a wonderful feeling.  It has gone from being an effort into an effortless and enjoyable pastime.

I can’t thank Lucy enough for making me realise a lifelong ambition of going to Australia and swimming on the Barrier Reef.  I can’t wait to get back in a pool now and it is all down to her.


Lucy was an amazing swimming teacher, after 30 years of not being able to take my feet off the floor in a swimming pool she has taught me to swim with confidence below and above the water using all strokes. I miss my weekly lessons with her but I am now going swimming every week and enjoy every minute. The confidence I have has passed onto my children who will be swimming unaided in no time. I am extremely grateful to her!


Although I could happily stand in a swimming pool when it came to swimming across and putting my head in the water I was very nervous. I was going to the Great Barrier Reef as a part of my honeymoon and I really wanted to be able to enjoy the experience and I felt that I needed some lessons to be able to do this.

Before I started I was naturally nervous and I kept thinking about the scary lessons I had when I was 7 years old! However it was not scary! I felt completely in control and with Lucy’s gentle encouragement I was able to develop my swimming skills and even learnt how to control my breathing under water!

When I finished the lessons I felt a great sense of achievement and I appreciated having support from Lucy, who made me feel safe and confident but never rushed me to do anything that I wasn’t comfortable with –although I actually found myself progressing faster than I thought I would. Now I am much more confident in the water, no longer as worried and my technique is much more efficient and less tiring now!

Swimming is no longer something that I avoid and these lessons meant that I was able to swim on honeymoon but also to experience snorkeling in the Great Barrier Reef which was amazing!

Lucy was a fantastic support, encouraging but not forceful and that these lessons really have changed my ideas of swimming, I look forward to it now and that with Lucy’s help I have finally conquered something that has worried me since being very young.


In February I decided to have a go at triathlon as running on it’s own was boring, unfortunately I could only just about manage to thrash my way across a length of a fitness club pool before needing to hang on to an edge.

Having never had swimming lessons in my life before, I’d imagined it involved someone in a tracksuit with a whistle sending you up and down a pool endlessly until you were fit enough to cover the required distance. Lessons were mostly about technique with some sneaky stamina thrown in to help you along, and always with a smile and encouragement. You’d never think you could do something different every week over the 6 months I had lessons, but each one seemed to bring something new which gave me something to think about in the other practices I did on my own during the week.

My main objective when I started was not to drown on the swim leg of the triathlon, I was actually out of the water before half the people in my swim wave and now confident enough to be aiming to get before ¾ of them by the time I “tri” again next year.  I actually look forward to the open water swim sessions I go to, and will miss them over winter, and now go swimming at least three times a week!