Children’s swimming lessons

We operate five pools in Oldham and offer swimming lessons that have been developed to provide a fun and engaging environment for young people to learn how to swim. If you’re looking for swimming classes for your child, we have a variety of options available. You can start with adult and child or adult and baby swimming classes to introduce your baby to the pool. For non-swimmers and beginners, we offer intensive classes to help you progress quickly.

Over 4,000 students are currently enrolled in our innovative Rainbow Learn to Swim program. Please continue reading below to learn what sets us apart from traditional swimming lessons.

Rainbow Learn to Swim Programme

Oldham Active swimming coaches are committed to creating a safe, fun, and engaging environment for your child.

Our 7-level Learn to Swim programme is balanced to achieve core learning objectives through appropriate games-based activities. This will increase your child’s ability to retain knowledge and build on skills while developing social skills with other children in the group.

Celebrating achievements

The fun doesn’t end in the pool! We love celebrating children’s swimming milestones, whether mastering a new skill, reaching a distance goal, or completing a Learn to Swim level Award. Certificates and Badges are available for each level, ready for your little one to proudly show off.

Benefits of swimming lessons

  • Your child will get a different coloured swimming hat at every level, free of charge.
  • Children’s lessons paid over direct debit can swim free in any Oldham Actives pool.
  • A high-quality swimming teaching programme with progress tracking for parents via the GoLearn Home portal.
  • Oldham Active offers swimming lessons across all five of our centres.

How much do swimming lessons cost?

£27.50 a month and suitable for children aged from 3 years.

Enrol your child

To sign up your child for swimming lessons, please fill out the enrolment form using the link below. Once submitted, our Aquatics Team will contact you to arrange your preferred lesson.

Enrol for lessons

Meet the characters

Scroll through the characters to see all the achievements your child can earn as they progress through our seven rainbow levels.
Rainbow Level 1
Rainbow Level 2
Rainbow Level 3
Rainbow Level 4
Rainbow Level 5
Rainbow Level 6
Rainbow Level 7

Rainbow Level 1

Learn with Casey the Crab

Children will learn to enter the water safely, feel comfortable with water on their faces, blow bubbles, and move through the water. They will also learn to swim on their front and back with the help of a flotation device and exit the pool safely. These skills will help children feel confident and safe while swimming.



  • Rainbow Level 1 Award
  • Safety Award 1
  • I am confident

Rainbow Level 2

Learn with Sally the Starfish

Children will learn various swimming skills, including swivel entry, travelling unaided, front and back paddle, log roll, jumping, and climbing out safely. These skills will make children feel confident and safe while swimming.



  • Rainbow Level 2 Award
  • Safety Award 2
  • 5m Distance

Rainbow Level 3

Learn with Pedro the Pufferfish

Children will learn to jump and fully submerge, retrieve objects from at least 1m deep, push and glide in a streamlined position and transition from front to back and back to front, swim 10m using front and back paddle, swim 5m using a breaststroke leg action with a noodle and perform a 3-5 second tuck float. These skills will help children feel confident and safe in the water.



  • Rainbow Level 3 Award
  • Safety Award 3
  • 10m Distance

Rainbow Level 4

Learn with Omar the Octopus

Children will learn to sink, push, glide, and swim front crawl and backstroke for 10m, swim breaststroke leg action, and dolphin leg kick for 10m. They will also perform head-first sculling action for 5m, push, glide, and swim front crawl and backstroke for 5m each while doing a log roll. These skills will help children feel confident and safe while swimming.



  • Rainbow Level 4 Award
  • Safety Award 4
  • 20m Distance

Rainbow Level 5

Learn with Sheldon the Shark

Children will learn to sink, push, and glide before swimming in various strokes, including front crawl 25m, backstroke 25m, breaststroke 10m, and butterfly 10m. They will also learn to perform a forward somersault, a feet-first sculling action, a head-first kneeling dive, and swim underwater.



  • Rainbow Level 5 Award
  • Safety Award 5
  • 25m Distance

Rainbow Level 6

Learn with Destiny the Dolphin

Children will learn various swim strokes and techniques, including front crawl, backstroke, breaststroke, and butterfly. They will also learn how to perform standing dives and tumble turns. By the end of their training, they will be able to swim 50 meters of front crawl, 25 meters of breaststroke and butterfly, and 100 meters using a combination of strokes.



  • Rainbow Level 6 Award
  • Safety Award 5
  • 50m Distance
  • 100m Distance

Rainbow Level 7

Learn with Steve the Stingray




  • Level 7 Award
  • Bronze
  • Silver
  • Gold
  • 200m Distance
  • 400m Distance

Other Swimming Lessons

Adult and Baby Swimming Class

An unrecognisable person holding a baby in a swimming pool during a baby swimming class, the young girl is looking at the camera and smiling while he father is smiling in the background.

Make friends for life and learn through creative play.

Suitable for babies 6 weeks to 2 years.

Read more

Adult and Child Swimming Class

Father and kids having fun in the swimming pool

Gain water confidence and learn to use swimming aids and other pool equipment.

For pre-schoolers aged 2-5.

Read more

Intensive swimming class

child learning how to swim in 1-1 swimming class

These intensive swimming classes are designed for non-swimmers and beginners and run for several days, depending on the swimmer’s ability.

Read more

ATS – Advanced Training Squad

expert swimmer in action

Private Swimming Club training session. Combine pool and land training to achieve maximum fitness, technique, and Speed. Suitable for ages 8.

Read more


Booking and Payment:

How do I enrol my child onto Oldham Active Swimming Lessons?

If you’d like your child to start our Oldham Active Swimming Lessons, simply complete the online form. Following this, a member of the Aquatics Team will contact you to arrange your sessions.

Alternatively  you can speak to one of our contact team on 0161 207 7000.

From time to time, you may be added to our waiting list until a space becomes available, as our lessons are extremely popular. If this is the case we operate on a first come first served basis to ensure we allocate spaces in the fairest possible way.

How much are swimming lessons?

The Learn to Swim lesson schedule is broken down into 12 equal monthly instalments of £27.50 per month.

How do I pay for lessons?

Learn to Swim lessons are paid via Direct Debit; you can set this up at reception when your child starts their first swimming lesson.

*Did you know?
If you pay for your child’s swimming lessons by direct debit, your child also receives free unlimited swimming outside of their lessons!

What happens if a swimming lesson is cancelled?

We are committed to ensuring that your swimmer enjoys their lessons and will do everything in our power to make sure they continue to do so. In the unlikely event that Oldham Active needs to cancel a lesson, you will receive an email notification, and your direct debit will be adjusted to exclude the cost of any missed swimming lessons.

How do I cancel my swimming lessons?

You can request a cancellation by speaking to an ADO or phoning the customer service team on 0161 207 7000. Once the request is applied, a team member will contact you to confirm your final access date.

Swimming Lessons:

How long is a swimming lesson?

Swimming lessons are 30 minutes long, with 25 minutes of swimming time. The remaining 5 minutes are allocated to the teacher to collect the children and take a register before returning them to parents/guardians at the end of the lesson.

How should I prepare for my child’s first lesson?

Please arrive at your swimming lessons approximately 10 minutes before your scheduled start time. Please follow the signage throughout the site to get to the pool and changing rooms or ask reception for directions. Once you have helped your child change into their swimming gear, kindly meet with the other students at the poolside. The swimming teacher will then take the attendance register for the lesson. At the end of the lesson, please collect your child from their teacher at the collection point.

Will my child be required to wear a swimcap?

During swimming lessons, children must wear colour-coordinated swim caps specific to their swimming level. The caps will also keep the child’s hair out of their face and help maintain cleanliness standards in the pools.

Can my child wear goggles?

Children are allowed to wear goggles during the lesson. However, for safety reasons, they must be removed when not needed. If your child has a medical condition that requires them to wear goggles at all times, please bring a doctor’s letter to reception so we can record it on your child’s medical notes for reference.

Can I view my child’s progress?

You can monitor your child’s progress anytime through GoLearn’s Home Portal. You may also discuss your child’s progress with the swimming teacher.

Will my child receive certificates?

We want children to celebrate their achievements. Within each level, three badges and certificates are available: progress, safety, and distance. You can purchase any badges and certificates your child has achieved at reception.

Can I take pictures of my child in their lesson?

Please note that taking photographs is strictly prohibited in the pool area and during swimming lessons – This is to safeguard the privacy of other children.

Are your classes suitable for SEND (Special Educational Needs & Disability-specific) children?

We don’t currently offer SEN or disability-specific sessions. Our inclusive group classes have up to 12 swimmers, depending on the swimming class level; therefore, children must be able to take instruction and be independent.
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Get in Touch

Please contact us using the form below and send us a message.
Alternatively you can telephone our Contact Team on 0161 207 7000. We look forward to hearing from you.

**Please note this form is for general enquiries only and should not be used for membership cancellations or freezes, please email**

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