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St Luke's Swim School

National Pool Lifeguarding Qualification 

Back for April 2022, you can earn a NPLQ at our indoor pool on St Luke's campus, University of Exeter, Heavitree rd, EX1 2LU

The NPLQ is the most awarded lifeguard qualification in the UK and Ireland and is also internationally recognised. More than 40,000 pool lifeguards qualify with the RLSS UK every year, and there are currently more than 80,000 pool lifeguards qualified in the NPLQ – 95% of all UK pool lifeguards. Once completed, there is the possibility of casual work off the back of the course.

When: Monday 18th - Friday 22nd April, 9am-5pm

Course cost: £240

How to book: Online, at St Luke's sport centre reception, or call 01392 724940

St Luke's Swim School

The St Luke's Swim School programme is designed for children of all abilities, from those who have never swum before through to competitive swimmers.

Our lessons follow the Swim England pathway and swimmers are assessed against specific criteria. You will be able to track your child's progress online.

Lessons take place 7 days a week in our indoor pool at St Luke’s Sports Centre in Exeter and are delivered by our experienced team of qualified coaches.

For just £25.00 a month children receive one 30 minute lesson a week as well as free swim membership to use our indoor and outdoor pools.

Lessons run continuously throughout the year with a two week break over the Christmas and New Year period.

If you have any questions about the swimming lessons: moving days / times / lessons please email

If you have queries about payments please email

Bookings and enquiries

Please be aware that we have a waiting list in operation for most levels. For more information or to add your child to the waiting list, please contact us on 01392 722905 or at, or use our online enquiry form.

Levels and structure

Learn to swim programme

View the assessment criteria and how to track your child's progress

Our lessons are taught as the Learn to Swim or Stroke Improvement.

Adult & Child Available for children between 2-3 years old where a parent/guardian will accompany them in the water. These run on Mondays at 2-2:30 or 2:30-3pm and Thursdays at 3-3:30 or 3:30-4pm. Discovery Duckling
Ducklings This is the entry level to the swim school. You will learn how to enjoy the water and take part in structured lessons. Aimed at non-swimmers between three and five years old. This stage operates one teacher to a maximum of six students. Duckling 1 to 4
Stage 1 Stage 1 develops basic safety awareness, the class scenario, basic movement skills and water confidence skills. Swimmers may use aids, such as arm bands, floats, etc. Stages 1 and 2 are taught together. This stage operates one teacher to a maximum of six students. NPTS stage one
7+ Learn to Swim New for 2019 - we now offer beginners learn to swim classes for children aged 7 and above. These are separate from our Ducklings and Stage 1 classes as we find it works better to have similar aged children learning together. These run on Mondays at 5pm, Wednesdays at 5:30pm, Fridays at 5pm and Sundays at 10:30am. NPTS Stage one, two & three
Stage 2 Focus on developing safe entries into the water, including jumping in, basic floating, travelling up to five metres on the front and back, and rotating the body to regain an upright position. Swimmers may use aids such as arm bands, floats, etc. Stages 1 and 2 are taught together. This stage operates one teacher to a maximum of six students. NPTS stage two
Stage 3 Developing safe entries into the water - including submersion - travelling up to 10 metres on the front and back, and progressing water safety knowledge and body rotation skills from the previous stage. Stage 3 swimmers must swim completely unaided on front & back and takes place in very deep water.. This stage operates one teacher to a maximum of six students. NPTS stage three
Stage 4 This stage develops the understanding of buoyancy through a range of skills. Also covered is refining kicking techniques for all strokes. The swimmer also has to swim 10 metres to a standard directed by the ASA. This stage operates one teacher to a maximum of seven students. NPTS stage four
Stage 5 Swimmers develop watermanship through sculling, treading water skills and body complete rotation. They also perform all strokes for a distance of 10 metres to a standard provided by Swim England. This stage operates one teacher to a maximum of seven students. NPTS stage five
Stage 6 Developing effective swimming skills - including coordinated breathing - across all strokes. Learners swim a distance of 25 metres using a stroke of their choice. Children also learn about aspects of water safety and about preparing properly for exercise. This stage operates one teacher to a maximum of eight students. NPTS stage six
Stage 7 During this stage, children develop quality stroke techniques up to 100 metres incorporating the skills they have learned, and combine them to develop a linked routine. This stage operates one teacher to a maximum of eight students. NPTS stage seven

Intensive swimming courses (3 years +)

Intensive Courses

We run 5 day intensive courses Monday-Friday covering most stages, they are a great booster to regular lessons. There is no waiting list for intensive course which means you can get in the pool sooner.

The intensive courses are normally run in;

  • February half term
  • Easter for 2 weeks
  • May half term
  • Summer holidays for 6 weeks
  • October Half Term

Great news! There is going to be 6 weeks worth of intensives programme coming soon - email for more information and how to book.


Squad Swimming, Rookie Lifesaving, Synchro & Water Polo

For swimmers that have completed Stage 7 there are a few different options available.

Squad swimming

The first option is to continue through to squad to get an introduction to competitive swimming. We run squad swimming on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.

Syncronised swimming

The second option is to try out our synchronised swimming lessons. These provide children with a structured format to learn the basics of synchronised swimming.

Water polo

The third option, for those who are looking for something completely different but still water based is our Water Polo lessons. These run on Saturdays 12-1pm. We hope, in the future, to organise some friendly matches against local teams.

Rookie lifesaving

The fourth option, and an alternative to lane swimming, is our rookie lifesaving squad. These currently run on a Sunday. The Rookie Lifeguard programme is the junior award scheme of the Royal Life Saving Society UK and teaches children skills in survival, rescue, life support and water safety.

Once your child is aged 16, they have the option of taking the National Pool Lifeguard Qualification (NPLQ) course and becoming a fully qualified lifeguard.

For more information, please contact the pool co-ordinator on 01392 722905 or email

Adult swimming lessons

We run 10 week swimming courses during the year for adults of all abilities.

From those who are nervous of the water, through to those wanting advanced technical tips and coached swimming sessions, all are welcome!


Course being planned for 2021

Course dates:

Wednesday September 8th - Wednesday November 10th 1900-1930 for mixed adult lessons

Sunday September 12th - Sunday November 14th Adult Improvers 1130-1200 and Adult Beginners 1200-1230/1230-1300.

Wednesday November 17th - Wednesday December 15th 1900-1930 for mixed adult lessons

Sunday November 21st - Sunday December 19th Adult Improvers 1130-1200 and Adult Beginners 1200-1230/1230-1300.

COMING SOON for 2022 (10-week courses £85.00)
Jan 5-March 9
March 16-May 18
May 25- July 27
August 3-Oct 5
Oct 12-Dec 14
Jan 9-March 13
March 20- May 22
May 29-July 31
August 7-Oct 9
Oct 16-Dec 18

Lessons held at St Luke's Indoor Pool


Bookings and enquiries

Please note that adult lessons must be booked in advance. Book onto the course by calling 01392 724940 or visit St Luke's Sports Centre reception.

For any adult swimming lesson enquiries please contact our swimming coordinator at