Many congratulations goes to Matthew Di Rosa! Matthew recently picked up the prestigious Customer Choice Award at the National Swimtime Teachers Conference and Awards evening.
This was no mean feat with over 2,000 customers responding and deciding the result. It’s also worth bearing in mind how fierce the competition is with Swimtime teachers having an unrivalled reputation for excellence with many qualified to internationally recognised standards. We caught up with Matthew after he received his award and asked him a few questions:
Well done on the award, Matthew! Can you tell us a bit about how you got started with Swimtime?
Many thanks. It’s a really long story but I’ll keep it short for you. I had been working with my local council teaching swimming but I was ready for a new challenge. This eventually led me to finding Richard, my franchisee, online and I decided to get in touch. It only took one meeting and, straight away, I was sure this is where I belonged.
So, how long have you been with Swimtime?
It’s been a while now! I’ve been with Swimtime since 2014 with an enforced break through those periods of lockdown during the pandemic. I didn’t think I’d be coming back because no one was quite sure when lessons would resume, but I’m so glad everything returned to relative normality, and I had the chance to come back to my old job.
What’s your favourite part of the job?
Well, it’s great getting up in the morning and knowing that I’m really going to make a difference. I enjoy the human interaction that you get as a swim teacher and, in many jobs, you just don’t get that.
It’s always great fun working with children and seeing them progress all the way from when they come to me, aged three, and then finding they are taller than me at the age of 10! I also love seeing the smiles on the faces of children and their parents when they start to realise big progress is being made. That’s the best part of the job!
Why do you think swimming lessons are so important?
When I was young, my dad taught me life-saving skills and I’ve had the determination to be a strong swimmer ever since. Even though we now live in a world of technology, one thing you’ll never be able to learn on an iPad is how to swim. Also swimming lessons are fun and low impact which means that children and adults of all ages and abilities can join in.
What do you think makes you stand out from the crowd as a swim teacher?
Oh, that’s a difficult one. I don’t want to sound arrogant, but it’s probably down to my enthusiasm and knowledge. I also know how to get the best out of my swimmers without pushing them too hard. The way I teach is more expressive than most and the children and parents seem to like that energy. I’m certainly not afraid of making a banana out of myself to keep a child entertained in the water and stop their attention wandering.
What does winning the Customer Choice Award mean to you?
Oh wow, it means the world! The Customer Choice Award is one of the biggest honours you can receive at Swimtime. Last year I came third, this year I won. It just gives me the confidence I am doing my chosen career well, and I love that.
I’m so thankful to all the customers who voted for me, and I should also thank my family who are always so supportive and, of course, the office staff and my colleagues at Swimtime Lancashire. They play a vital role in getting the children booked in for lessons and they are the unsung heroes in all this.
Thanks Matthew. It’s been a pleasure talking to you and, once again, many congratulations for winning the Customers Choice Award.