Greene Family Swim Story

There was never any doubt that our children would learn to swim from fully qualified swimming teachers. With a pool in our backyard, a strong belief that all children should be taught how to swim, and a family of good swimmers, it was honestly a matter of when not if. When our daughter turned two, we enrolled her at Eva Bory’s swim school (ideally located around the corner!) and she took to it like a duck to water. Katie progressed beautifully through the levels, loved every minute of her lessons, competed in her school carnivals from age 7 and we were beyond pleased with her
teachers. My mother decided that she would pay for swimming lessons as her life long gift to her grandchildren. We accepted her very generous offer (fourteen years later and she may or may not be regretting that offer!!). So when her little brother Connor turned two, off he went just like his sister. That is where the differences between them became glaringly apparent! I took Connor to his first lesson, along with my mum. He cried, he screamed and he pleaded for help. I was slightly embarrassed however, had no intention of getting him out of that pool. My mum was in tears as he gave up on me and begged her for help. Now, given that I worked full-time, the responsibility of swimming lessons was going to fall on her shoulders. I was worried. We left after his lesson and I remember telling my mum “he will be fine, he just needs a little time”. Well actually he needed around 8-10 weeks…For over two long months he absolutely screamed the place down and became more persistent in his cries for help. His favourite line was “SAVE ME Nanna, please!!” My poor mum had to frequently wait outside as his teacher dealt with him screaming, attached to her back! Mum remembers that some younger mothers told her to pull him out, that he will be forever traumatised, whilst the more experienced swimming mothers told her to hang in there! I was a little glad that I didn’t have to deal with this but did feel terribly bad for my mum! This was really hard for her as Connor was her special little boy. Karen Bentley assured my mum she was doing the right thing and we valued her professional opinion. After that initial period, which was indeed highly stressful for all involved, Connor gave up his protest and decided he may as well just enjoy it. 11 years and many school swimming carnivals later, Connor is still a part of the Nepean Aquatic Centre and enjoys his Swim for Fitness lesson with Meegan each Thursday. He turned into quite a strong little swimmer and whilst squads and competitive swimming is not for him, we are very grateful for a class that is still highly beneficial. Connor now loves water, especially the beach. We believe that because of swimming lessons, we can visit the beach and know that our children are strong swimmers who could help themselvesshould they face danger. They both understand how dangerous water can be and have a high level of understanding of the need to be sensible in and around water, whilst still having fun. The key is persistence and consistency. Learning to swim takes a long time and cannot be rushed!
Our children never had ‘breaks’ because it was too cold or they might get sick. Actually, continuing swimming lessons through the colder months helped them both with their asthma and to maintain their fitness to fight off illness. My family can highly recommend swimming lessons at Nepean Aquatic Centre and we thank the many fantastic teachers who have taught our children over the past 14 years!
Connor Greene 1