RADS Squads & Lessons

Novices

Novice lessons take place in the teaching pool twice a week. Children learning in this pool are usually aged 5 or over and in the formative stages of swimming development. Classes are small and with the aid of our dedicated teachers, the aim is to develop stroke work and confidence in the water.

Improvers

Improver lessons take place in the main 25 metre pool. Lessons are divided into 7 classes over the 8-lane pool and are run twice a week in the evenings, and on Saturday mornings for lanes 4-8. The focus of these classes is continued development of stroke work and confidence. Increasingly, as the swimmers progress though the lanes stamina is further developed.
Assessments of each swimmer are made on a regular basis. Progression from lane 1 to lane 8 is based on ability rather than age. Swimmers are graded across the pool, using agreed RADS standards, as well as through other criteria (Graded Galas). All swimmers at this level are eligible to compete in the RADS graded galas - click here for more info. By the time the swimmers reach lanes 7 & 8 in the improvers lanes, they are encouraged to think about competing in open galas, or may even be selected to represent the club in league galas. Swimmers must be 9 years old or older to compete in open galas.

Eddie's Squad

"Eddie's" Squad has been run by Eddie Clarke for many years. Progression to this squad is usually made via the improvers lanes. Eddie works hard to prepare swimmers for competitions and the training that will be expected in the higher levels. Training drills become more advanced at this level and swimmers are expected to attend training at least twice a week, but for the best progression it is recommended they attend three sessions.
At this stage, swimmers should be entering open galas and even focusing on achieving qualifying times for Essex Championships. For more details of open galas & championships that RADS are entering, click here.

Junior Squad

The Junior Squad is a vital part of the journey to becoming a competitive swimmer. Many of our Junior Squad are county standard swimmers, with some attaining regional qualification as well. Swimmers are expected to train in the evening and the early morning sessions to obtain maximum benefit. (Swimmers will be invited to train on Sunday evening by the coaches.)
Swimmers continue to build stamina and speed while being coached on technique. Strokes are polished in this squad and starts and turns are focused upon to ensure the swimmers are competitive when racing. Swimmers at this level tend to be the elite swimmer catagory and many will be selected to represent the club in league galas, as well as competing for themselves in open galas.

Senior Squad

The Senior Squad is the upper echelon of the competitive swimmers in the club. Training is more intensive at this level, with squad members expected to train regularly (up to 7 times/week including mornings). This squad has a high level of county and regional swimmers, with some even targeting national qualification times.
This squad utilises all 8 lanes of the pool and is run by head coach Doug Drake, who is the longest serving coach in Essex with over 25 years experience. Swimmers at this level are expected to be highly focused on training and competition.

Masters

Once swimmers reach the age of 18 they are able to compete in Masters Competitions. The RADS Masters is a flourishing section of the club with swimmers ranging from those who just wish to keep fit, up to national record holders. The competitive swimmers are able to train with the Senior Squad at certain times, or attend Masters only sessions. Masters sessions are available for all standards of swimmers. For more information on this section of the club, click here.