What’s coming up this winter? 

Hi Everyone,

We have a few announcements for you in this newsletter, all aimed at keeping you swimming through the cooler months. It certainly does feel like winter has hit with the drop in temperature these past few days. It seems winter has started early this year! I know a few of our swimmers are concerned about whether the pools will be warm enough to continue swimming in June, July and August. I’m pleased to report the pools are still very warm, with Victoria Park Pool sitting at a toasty 29C last Sunday. To find out more about our plans for winter read on.

Firstly, Prince Alfred Park Pool will closing temporarily for maintenance work from the 20th June for six weeks which means we need to shift to another location during this period. I’m delighted to inform you we will be moving to Cook and Phillip Park Pool, an indoor aquatic facility in the city. This is the perfect location, particularly for our Learn to Swim program during winter. 

We are also launching another Masterclasses Series commencing next weekend. Winter is an ideal time to get your back, breast and butterfly strokes in order. The last series proved just how popular these classes really are. Spaces are limited, so do book early.

For the would-be open water swimmer, becoming familiar with the ocean and its changing ways is better undertaken during the less hectic times at the beach. Launching in June, our Introduction to Ocean Swimming program will teach you how to read the surf, as well as get in and out in all conditions. The details are in the newsletter.

I’m delighted to welcome Lisa Orlando back to our team. Lisa worked with us in 2017 and has recently returned to Different Strokes Swimming. Ellie got to catch – up with her this week and found out a few fun facts. 

We’ve also got an interview with one of our newer swimmer’s. Shirley joined our program at the start of this year seeking stroke correction. She recently told me she’d shaved off a significant amount of time in her last club race. A fantastic result! She puts much of her improved performance down to her stroke correction. Do have a read to learn more about her swim story.

In other news, I’m taking a step back from teaching and coaching for the next couple of months. A breather in the quieter times to focus on planning for the upcoming summer season, and to take care of my aged mum. You will see me on pool deck occasionally, assisting your instructors and coaches. I will still be taking private lessons and jumping in to cover classes, squad and SwimFit sessions when needed. If you’d like to chat, or have any questions, please feel free to contact me. You know I love to catch – up with you all. I hope to be back actively teaching and coaching from August onwards. 

Finally, I urge you to keep swimming through winter. It is the only way to keep fit and get ready for summer. To ensure you can really enjoy the beach, the pool, and for beginners most importantly, be water safe. 

As always, yours in swimming, 

Kari Baynes

Photos: Just like our swimmers, we’re diving into the new season head first! PC: Diana Galosi

Prince Alfred Park Pool classes moving to Cook & Phillip (temporarily) 

The management team at Prince Alfred Park Pool (PAPP) has decided to make the most of the quiet winter season to undergo much needed maintenance on the pool. This means that PAPP will be closed for six weeks between June 20th – August 1st. As a result we won’t be able to run our usual classes at this location the period.

We reached out to our PAPP swimmers last Friday to see what would work for the majority of you throughout this time. Thank you to everyone who replied, we were inundated. Taking your feedback into account, we’ve come up with a plan which we believe will work for the majority of swimmers. 

We will be moving to Cook and Phillip Park Pool, an indoor facility which is perfect for winter. There will be a limited number of classes, reflective of the anticipated numbers, given how many of you said you would be away. We have rolled our week night classes into Saturday afternoons. 

The Saturday Cook + Phillip timetable will be as follows: 

12:00 – 1:00pm: SwimFit + Squad
1:00 – 1:45pm: Beginner 1 and Water Safety
1:00 – 1:45pm: Stroke Development
1:45 – 2:30pm: Beginner 1 and Water Safety
1:45 – 2:30pm: Stroke Foundations

There will be the opportunity to book some private lessons after these sessions as well. 

About Cook + Phillip Park Pool
This is an indoor, heated 50m pool that is currently split up into two 25m sections. We will be running classes in 25m lanes in the shallow end of the pool, to accomodate swimmers at all levels. We will advis eyou of our location at the pool as details come to hand. 

Pool entry fee (adult): $8.15. More on admission fees here.
Location: 4 College Street (cnr William Street), Sydney. Get directions
Parking: there is parking available in the Enacon parking station at St Mary’s Cathedral, or in The Domain carpark. 
Public Transport: Town Hall and St James are the closest stations. 

As spaces will be limited, please let us know ASAP if you’d like to book in for any of these sessions so that we can reserve a place for you.

Photo: Swimmers learning to tread water at Cook & Phillip Pool
PC: Kari Baynes

Book Now

Welcome Lisa Orlando!

This month we welcomed Swim Instructor, Lisa Orlando, back to the team. Returning to us from from her native Italy, Lisa taught with us back in 2017.

She’s been teaching for over seven years now and holds both a Swim Australia Teacher of Swimming and Water Safety license as well as a Swim Australia Teacher of Competitive Swimming license.

Not only is Lisa an excellent instructor, she was a competitive swimmer at an elite level in Italy and holds a 1:00 time for 100m freestyle! Her stroke is amazing to watch!

We’ve asked Lisa a few quick questions so you can all get to know her a bit better:
1. Dogs or cats? Dogs!
2. Tea or coffee? Coffee. 
3. Bikini or one-piece? Bikini.
4. Are you a night owl or an early bird? Early bird!
5. Favourite TV show or movie: Harry Potter.
6. Favourite song right now: You Should See Me in a Crown – Billie Eilish

We’re delighted to have her back. Her expertise and international experience is second to none. If you haven’t already make sure to say hello and give a warm welcome back to Lisa next time you see her at the pool!

Photos: Instructor Lisa Orlando at Prince Alfred Park Pool. PC: Kari Baynes

New Masterclass Series 

Back by popular demand, we’re running a new Masterclass series starting next  week! This series will be a set of intensives to get you in top form across all four core strokes. They will be held at the Fitness First Rockdale’s indoor pool so you can avoid the chill.

The Masterclasses will be broken up into two, one hour long sessions, covering two strokes per session. There is enough of a gap between the sessions for you to practise before taking on an additional stroke. Our recommendation is to take one of the sessions one Saturday and the other the following Saturday, not attempt two hours one day. 

Saturday, 28/05: 9:00 – 10:00am – Backstroke & Freestyle
Saturday, 28/05: 10:00 – 11:00am – Breaststroke & Butterfly

Saturday, 9/07: 9:00 – 10:00am – Backstroke & Freestyle
Saturday, 9/07: 10:00 – 11:00am – Breaststroke & Butterfly

Fitness First Rockdale, indoor pool at 395 W Botany St, Rockdale. There is plenty of parking available on site.

1 x 60 minute session: $45
2 x 60 minute session: $80
These fees include the pool entry fee.

What to Bring: 
Fins are a must at every session, lots of water, 

You must be able to swim 50
m freestyle comfortably. 

Sign Me Up!

Our Swimmer’s Story

This week I interviewed Shirley about her experience swimming with us as well as  two other swim clubs, both based in Bronte, Sydney. 

Q. When did you start your swimming journey, and why?
A. As a self-taught swimmer from the UK, I was overjoyed at the warm ocean waters in Australia. This ignited my passion for swimming, albeit with the technique of swimming like an octopus!

Q. What do you enjoy most about swimming?
A. The full mind body experience and joyous meditative relaxation of swimming solo and the great sense of achievement, exercise and fun in swimming with a group. Best of all it’s a portable hobby that I also enjoy whenever travelling, I check there is a pool or beach nearby.

Q. What’s your preference: swimming solo or with a group?
A. I enjoy both for different reasons (as above). I swim in two local Clubs, both in their 101st year: the Bronte Summer Swimming Club and The Bronte Splashers Club in winter. This brings great fun in competitive swimming, is most rewarding and very social spending time and getting to know local community.

Q. Do you like setting goals for your swimming, and if so what’s your next goal?
A. I enjoy setting goals that I find motivating and rewarding. This season with outstanding coaching from Different Strokes Swimming, I have improved my swimming techniques and have broken my personal swim times. Next goals are to improve techniques in tumble turns and dive entry, and ultimately my dream is to prepare for ocean swimming.

Q. What’s the hardest thing you’ve found to improve your swimming?
A. Without a doubt it’s unlearning self-taught swimming techniques and to change the muscle memory to learn the correct swimming techniques to improve the efficiency of my swimming.

Q. What do you think about when swimming?
A. When swimming solo absolutely nothing I go into the zone, when swimming competitively, winning!

Q. How did your find out about Different Strokes Swimming, and why did you decide to stick with us?
A. Multiple recommendations from friends and colleagues over a long period of time advised that this was the very best adult coaching in Sydney and they were certainly right. My husband gifted the first pack of lessons and is overjoyed at the results achieved. The classes are small, personalised and highly professional. The coaches are excellent with infinite patience, support and a drive to improve clients swim techniques.

Q. Favourite place to swim?
A. Bronte – best place on earth!

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A huge thank you to Shirley for taking the time to chat with me and share some of your swimming insights. We wish you the best of luck in all your swimming adventures!

Interview by Ellie Kallmier

Intro to Ocean Swimming

Want to join Zoe and the 4SEASons program (our open water partner), but not sure how to read the beach and surf conditions, let alone get in or out of the surf? We’re here to help. We’re igniting our Introduction to Ocean Swimming sessions this winter! This monthly session is designed to help the total novice, first-time ocean swimmer get started.

These sessions will focus on the basics such as entry and exit from the water, reading and understanding conditions like ground and wind swell, and most importantly how they can affect you when swimming. This is a basic, entry level course for people who want to get started with ocean swimming safely and with confidence, but don’t know how!

Under the guidance of our instructor and avid ocean swimmer, Diana Galosi, you will come away from these sessions appreciating the power of the ocean, learn how to read the conditions and be able to get in and out of the surf safely with confidence.

Details are as follows;

  • North Bondi Beach
  • Saturday, 11th June and then every 4 weeks thereafter 
  • 10.15am for a sharp 10.30am start
  • The session lasts 60 minutes 
  • Fee = $35 casually, or packs are available

If you’re keen to join these sessions, let us know by hitting the button below to send us your EOI and you’ll be first in line when bookings open. Places are limited so be sure not to miss out!

Please note: to join these sessions you must be able to swim 500m freestyle comfortably and tread water for 3+ minutes. 

Open Water Intro EOI

Inspiration Corner


Margaret Hartshorn

“Margaret [was] extremely afraid of water; however her love of life and learning has taken her on a journey out of her comfort zone and into the swimming pool.”

Her husband drove her to the pool for her very first lesson, and in this video she’s just celebrating her 60th lesson! Margaret was able to surprise her own daughters with her newfound skills and confidence in the water. Congratulations to Margaret, and to everyone who’s overcome their fears to learn something new!

Vaccination Policy & COVID Safety

As per our updated COVID-19 Safety Plan (which can be found on our website here), you are required to send your current vaccination certificate for us to verify before your first class.  You may do so by forwarding it to us, or sending us a screenshot via SMS. Your certificate will not be stored by us once it has been verified. We have a fully vaccinated team and do require you to be fully vaccinated before joining any of our classes, for the health and safety of our staff and other swimmers. 

Happy SwimmingKari





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PO Box 830
Newtown NSW 2042

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