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Our Aquababies Swim Programme


Aquababies Swim Programme Background to the Aquakiddies/Babies program

The Aquababies method of teaching was pioneered in Australia during the 1960’s. Programme deviser, Julie-Ann James, was one of the first children that this method was taught to and the first to introduce this technique to the UK. Now one of the UK leading baby swimming experts, Julie-Ann has taught tens of thousands of young children to swim. The Aquakiddies/Babies program is the result of her extensive hands on experience and global research during her 25 year career. Now Aquababies is here in Ireland.

Swim Programme

The foundations of the programme are based on the reflexes and responses of babies and young children. We aim to provide positive associations with swimming and the lessons are informative, friendly and lots of fun. Stringent health and safety procedures are rigorously followed and all of our teachers are fully qualified, holding STA and Swim Ireland certification in addition to our extensive in-house specialist training programme.

Our aim is to teach parents/carers the correct method to teach their child to swim.

We use gentle submersions if adult and baby are willing. We never ask you to do anything you do not want to. We use submersions as part of the technique to teach breath control, which is a fundamental part of swimming. We teach basic water safety and confidence techniques and use nursery songs in the toddler classes to engage the children and provide positive associations with swimming. However, we are more than simply a splash and fun class – we aim to lay the foundations of future swimming.


The classes are structured with a different progressive aim each lesson.

Baby Swimming

new born-12/13mths

  • Babies Stage 1
  • Babies Stage 2
  • Advanced Babies

Toddler Swimming

ages 1 to 3 years

  • Toddlers
  • Advanced Toddlers
  • Aquakiddies

Each stage is five weeks long and each class lasts for 30 minutes. Stages may be repeated as progression is matched to the individual needs of each child. Each term costs between €85- €95, depending on how many siblings or if a group booking of 4 or more, charged as one complete term. Payment can be made by laser or credit card and usually made one week prior to the course commencing and no lessons can be paid for individually on the day.

We aim to be as flexible as possible, so we only ask you to commit to one stage at a time. Each five weeks a new block of courses starts at every level. You can return at the next stage of your course whenever and at any venue you choose.

The core foundation of our class structure is to teach key elements of learning to swim that relate to children’s stage of physical and social development, whilst having fun.

These classes are open to parents and children aged up to 3 years.

Aqua Yoga – Pregnancy & Post-natal 

Aqua Yoga Swim ProgrammeWe are pleased to announce the launch of Birthlight Aqua Yoga – Pregnancy & Post-natal

What is Aqua Yoga?

Aqua yoga is a natural and all-encompassing way to promote and sustain fitness and health. It offers a gentle and easily available way to enjoy movement and breathing using the supportive element of water.

Aqua Yoga combines slow stretching with the use of breathing and relaxation as the water provides resistance for the muscles to work against. Bodies feel virtually weightless in water, so that stretches that might not be possible on the ground can be achieved without strain. Aqua yoga is the perfect combination of the benefits that yoga and swimming can bring.

Aqua yoga is the perfect combination of the benefits that yoga and swimming can bring.

Deirdre Casey is a Birthlight Aqua Yoga teacher and also a qualified swim teacher . Deirdre has trained with the founder and Director of Birthlight, Françoise Barbira Freedman who is a medical anthropologist at the University of Cambridge, where she does research and teaches as an affiliated lecturer in the Department of Social Anthropology.


Benefits of  Pre-natal Aqua Yoga:

  • Expansion of the breath
  • Open pelvis in preparation for birth
  • Strengthen abdominal muscles
  • Stretch and alignment of the spine
  • Gain control of the pelvic floor
  • Deep relaxation helps to sooth away muscle tension experienced from daily weight bearing
  • Connecting you with your baby
  • Feeling of well being

Benefits of Post-natal Aqua Yoga:

  • Closing pelvis after birth
  • Re knitting abdominal muscles
  • Realigning and strengthening the spine
  • Regaining strength to the pelvic floor
  • General toning and feeling of well being

Water is a medium especially suited to pregnant women and wonderfully soothing to those who have just given birth. It is therapeutic and supportive, allowing you to stretch and breathe far beyond your capabilities on dry land. Yoga is a centuries old practice that promotes balance, energy, deep breathing and relaxation. Together they provide the optimum workout for you and your baby.

Birthlight is dedicated to the greater enjoyment of pregnancy, birth and babies. Birthlight is a charity and teacher-training organisation focusing on the holistic approach to pregnancy, birth and babyhood.

  • Birthlight is the only Pre- and Postnatal training provider accredited by The Royal College of Midwives.
  • Birthlight is the 1st Pre and Postnatal training provider recognised by the Federation of Antenatal Educators.
  • Birthlight is a Professional Association within the Complementary and Natural Healthcare Council through the BYTC (British Yoga Therapy Council)
  • Birthlight has created the Parent and Baby course for the STA (Swimming Teachers Association)
  • Birthlight is a member of the European Yoga Federation