Who would have thought that socially distant swimming would ever be a thing?

This is your chance to see what it looks like, how we (Arundel Lido and South Coast Mermaids) are keeping you safe and what to expect when attend sessions. 

A socially distant swimming set up.  The family fun session has equipment set out at intervals to support social distancing.

A socially distant family fun swim set up. As you can see, the equipment is laid out next to a cone at socially distant intervals. Each family has their own set of equipment to use during the session. Some of the smaller items of equipment are in mesh bags. This allows us to clean the equipment easily between session.

Some things about socially distant swimming are great, some things make take a bit of getting used to. However, everything is in place to ensure that you are safe and that we are compliant with current guidance.

We want you to be confident in your return to the pool, although this might mean that some things are frustrating (I know lane swimming isn’t what it used to be, and butterfly is still not allowed during public sessions),

What does socially distant swimming look like?

  • Reduced numbers in the pool (following the latest Swim England guidance)
  • Time between sessions to clean both the equipment and touch points 
  • Pre-booked sessions – you know that when you come, you have your space in the pool
  • We are coming up with new and creative ways to get you back in the pool, from family fun sessions to renting a whole section of the pool for your family bubble
  • We are SO excited to have you back!
Helen and Anna leading socially distant swimming in the pool.  They are very happy to be back teaching!

Teacher Helen (left) and Teacher Anna (right) are incredibly excited to have you back for socially distant swimming. Whilst this might not be how you usually swim as a family (activities guided by teachers) we hope that this is a cost effective, fun and exciting way to get you back in the pool! We are having so much fun seeing you all back in the pool (can you tell?).

Some things look slightly different and you may need some time to get used to them…

  • You have to pre-book every single session (However, both Arundel Lido and I have got new booking systems, which even link to your calendar so you can keep track of your sessions!)
  • Asking you to arrive beach ready (yes, with your swimsuit under your clothes…)
  • You can’t shower (we are aiming to reduce touch points) before or after your session
  • The pool gates need to stay open (again, to reduce touch points – keep your children with you – no escapee children please!) 
  • Giving you your own set of equipment for the session
  • Asking you to enter and exit the pool a certain way (please let the lifeguards know if this is an issue/if you need an alternative entry or exit)
  • Air high fives… yes, they are now a thing! We want to celebrate your children’s successes! We will be giving lots of verbal praise, air high fives, air fist bumps… all socially distant.  

How are we keeping you safe during socially distant swimming sessions?

  • Reducing touch points at the Lido
  • Taking your temperature when you arrive on site
  • Giving you your own equipment to use for the session (so no sharing between guests not in your bubble) 
  • Sterilising and cleaning equipment and surfaces between sessions
  • Cleaning the changing rooms between sessions 
  • Limiting the amount of people on site 
  • Limiting any crossover of session by providing a break in between
  • Providing hand sanitiser at different points around the site
  • Washing our hands regularly 
  • Asking you to remain socially distant 
  • Not allowing you on site more than 5 minutes before your allocated time (10 minutes for mermaids so I can get tails set up for you or your children) 
  • Requesting (very nicely) for you to leave the site within 10 minutes of your session finishing! (We do feel mean doing this, but this is so that we can clean and set up for the next group!) We are so grateful that you are able to help us out in this way – it allows us to move around the site and practice social distancing whilst setting up for the next session. 
Socially distant swimming at Arundel Lido family fun session

Whilst you might be finding the idea of some of the socially swimming difficult, just look at this gorgeous pool all ready for you to have fun in! The set up is there so that we can keep you, the other customers and staff safe.

Behind the scenes

There is so much going on behind the scenes and it has taken an amazing collaborative effort to be able to open this summer.  From ordering massive amounts of PPE to working out how to train lifeguards in a socially distant way.  To reading massive amounts of guidance, which change regularly, and ensuring the correct systems are in place. 

However, those of you who like chlorine as their perfume will understand just how excited we are.  There was lots of socially distant squealing like little children as we were staff training and getting ready for the first sessions.  

I love what I do and I believe it shows! 

Both myself and the staff at the Lido can’t wait to see you! 

Do you have any questions about opening? Leave them below! 

Book your socially distant swimming sessions!

Have you booked your sessions?

You can book South Coast Mermaids Classes here! And Arundel Lido here

Teacher Helen and Teacher Anna as socially distant mermaids
Socially distant mermaids! (Teacher Helen and Teacher Anna)


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