Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Duncan Scott inspires the next generation in his home town to learn to swim

Duncan Scott, fresh back from the Australian Gold Coast with an impressive six medals in his back pocket, was today inspiring the young generation to learn to swim in Troon, South Ayrshire at the same pool where he learned to swim as a young boy.

Duncan Scott commented:

“My dad would take myself and my sister to the pool in Troon every Sunday where he would teach us how to swim. My first club was South Ayrshire and I joined because my sister did. My earliest memory is of my dad teaching my sister and I how to float on our backs, the very basics of backstroke. I loved learning how to swim, Mike and Marie the two coaches at south Ayrshire Swimming club taught me well and got me to learn how to streamline."

South Ayrshire is one of 22 Local Authorities/Leisure Trusts that have signed up to Scottish Swimming’s National Framework for Learn to Swim in partnership with Scottish Water. The idea behind this National Learn to Swim Programme is to focus on quality environments that provide safe, fun and challenging experiences to help children become competent and confident swimmers.

The partnership with Scottish Water and aquatic providers has enabled Scottish Swimming to bring Duncan Scott on board as a Learn to Swim ambassador and he is a fantastic role model and inspiration for children of all ages learning to swim across Scotland showing that hard work, commitment and ambition supported by high quality learn to swim and club programmes can deliver fantastic results.

Sharon MacDonald, Director of Development commented:

The National Learn to Swim Programme in partnership with Scottish Water is delivered by aquatic providers across Scotland and will eventually be rolled out to 100,000 children in Scotland ensuring our young people are confident, competent and safe in and around water while having fun at the same time.  When children learn to swim from an early an age as possible they learn to love the water and build confidence which really helps when they start to learn the strokes and develop correct technique.

Alistair Mutch of South Ayrshire Council commented:

In South Ayrshire we deliver the National Learn to Swim programme as well as school swimming lessons and have seen a 30% growth in the programme in the last year delivering lessons to almost children. We also have excellent provision for children with a disability both in mainstream programmes for Learn to Swim and Club swimming and bespoke provision where required. Many of these swimmers have gone on to compete in paraswimming and have passed coaching qualifications.

Brian Lironi, Director of Corporate Affairs for Scottish Water, said:

“It’s absolutely fantastic that one of Duncan’s first stops back in Scotland after his historic achievements at the Commonwealth Games is back to Troon where it all began for him to encourage young people to learn to swim.

 “We're incredibly proud to be a partner in the Learn to Swim programme and fortunate to have an athlete of Duncan's stature as our Learn to Swim ambassador.

"What Duncan achieved at the Commonwealth Games was amazing and made the entire nation proud. His commitment, dedication and sheer enjoyment of swimming means there simply couldn't be a better showcase for the initiative to get 100,000 children learning to swim in Scotland’s pools.”

The National Learn to Swim programme is aimed at children from birth to 11 years old and is the starting point on Scottish Swimming’s aquatic pathway which feeds into club aquatics delivered in 160 clubs across Scotland.