We teach children from 3yrs of age in our 'Nemo' groups where we invite parents to join in to assist with the transition into group lessons. After Nemo our swimmers begin our own swim lesson programme designed by Gary Vandermeulen (Olympic swimmer 1988, Olympic Coach 2000 & 2004) and updated regularly with improvements from our instructors.

Our swimming programme introduces breaststroke kick earlier and dolphin kick earlier than other lesson programmes because these movements are very natural for young swimmers. Our levels 1-6 gradually take children through the learning process of all swimming strokes:

Frontcrawl, Backcrawl, Breaststroke and Butterfly. In levels 7 & 8 our lesson time increases to 40minutes (from 30minutes) and we begin to fine tune swimming strokes. We do not currently publish our syllabus on our web site due to the fact that our syllabus in the past has been copied by our competition. Our programme continues to improve and if you are interested in the criteria for moving from level to level we can email you the information. Our syllabus is the ONLY programme which introduces activities that supports future activity in Synchronised swimming and water polo.


These lessons take the level 8 swimmers and start teaching in areas that prepares a child for competitive swimming. They learn dives from starting blocks, tumble turns (and all stroke turns) and are introduced to using swimming to improve their fitness. These lessons are kept fun and interesting!

Our Phoenix Aquatics team also teaches pre-competitive levels. Our swim school supports all clubs around our lesson programmes. Where possible we support the Phoenix Aquatics club due to its policy of introducing all aquatics sports.

Sheppard Swim School is jointly owned and directed by Scotland's most successful female swimmer; five time Olympian Alison Sheppard MBE and her husband, Olympic coach Gary Vandermeulen. We teach lessons in multiple locations: Perth, Dundee, St Andrews, Auchterarder, Stirling, Kincardine and also in Dollar as part of our upper levels in the new swim club; Phoenix Aquatics.

The newly formed Phoenix Aquatics swimming club is coached by Gary Vandermeulen. It is not a part of the Sheppard Swim School except that we support the club. The club is a members run not-for-profit organization. At Phoenix Aquatics they have pre-competitive swimming, competitive swimming, masters swimming, synchronised swimming, Triathlon and Water Polo.

We provide high quality swimming lessons in the following areas: Perth area Glenalmond College pool (PH1 3RY); St Andrews Fife St Leonards School (KY16 9QJ); or also click here for a detailed map of pool area & parking. Stirling area at Bannockburn High School on Sundays (FK7 0HQ) and Wallace High School on Tuesdays (FK9 5HW) Kincardine at Tulliallan Police College for swim clinics for competitive swimmers. Email for upcoming events. Auchterarder area Castlebrae Police Treatment Centre pool -Auchterarder (PH3 IAG);