Aquatic Activity and Swimming for Health - elearning for healthcare
Menu Access our elearning programmes on the elfh Hub Hub Register / Log in >
This programme is in partnership with...
  • NHS England partnership logo
  • Swim England
  • University of Nottingham

Available on the Learning Hub

This programme is available on the NHS Learning Hub. We recommend you read the information on this webpage to find out more about the programme before you access the learning (

More information about the Learning Hub and the migration of elfh programmes can be found here.

About the Aquatic Activity and Swimming for Health programme

This session outlines a clear learning path for healthcare professionals, social prescribers and students about when to signpost, use and engage people in aquatic activity. It provides an overview of the benefits of water-based activity and how you can encourage and support people to take it up. 

By the end of this session you should be able to: 

  • explore the benefits of aquatic activity for health and wellbeing 
  • recognise contraindications, precautions, and special considerations for people participating in aquatic activity 
  • identify resources and signpost to a range of aquatic activities 
  • safely and confidently signpost people to aquatic activity 

The session introduces a character, Leon, who hadn’t been near a pool for many years and was signposted to water-based exercise. We will follow Leon on his journey to improve his health and wellbeing through the recommendations outlined in the course.  We also explore how aquatic activity can benefit a range of people and explain where to find support for those who might find getting started most challenging. 

More information

Swim England’s Health and Wellbeing benefits of swimming report (2017) highlighted the enormous potential swimming and aquatic activity has to support the health of the population due to its popularity and accessibility across the life course. The unique properties of water make swimming perfect for people of all ages to exercise, particularly those with injuries, impairments, long term health conditions, or those who struggle to exercise on land. 

 There is increasing evidence that swimming is a cost-effective activity that will help to save the NHS money. As a result, Swim England, with partners from its Swimming and Health Commission group have supported the development of this session to further highlight the unique benefits of aquatic activity and swimming, to increase consideration of water-based activity and discussions with patients about the opportunity within healthcare and community settings. 


We would like to thank the following for their input into formulating this session:

Dr Katherine Whittingham, Associate Professor Health Sciences, University of Nottingham
Natalie Sharratt, Student, University of Nottingham
Hussain Alzubaidi, GP Clarendon Lodge Medical Practice and Lifetyle Clinical Champion, Royal College of GPs
Anita Aggarwal, GP Thurleigh Road Practice, Nightingale PCN
Snay Gohill, Social Prescribing Link Worker, Leamington PCN
Ian Salvin, Health and Wellbeing Development Manager, Brimhams Active

Project team

  • Sarah Cox

    Chartered Physiotherapist, Aquatic Therapy Association of Chartered Physiotherapists (ATACP)
  • Dr Fiona Moffatt

    Associate Professor, Director of Professional Development and Wellbeing, University of Nottingham
  • Andrew Power

    Water Wellbeing Specialist, Swim England


  • Sarah Gray

    Sarah Gray

    Programme Manager - Technology Enhanced Learning, NHS England
  • Laura Pope

    Laura Pope

    Senior Project Manager - Technology Enhanced Learning, NHS England
  • Lyndsey Callion

    Lyndsey Callion

    Senior Project Manager - Technology Enhanced Learning, NHS England
  • Karen Walker - ID

    Karen Walker

    Lead Learning Designer - Technology Enhanced Learning, NHS England
  • Rachel Grant

    Rachel Grant

    Learning Designer - Technology Enhanced Learning, NHS England
  • Abigail Lingford

    Abigail Lingford

    Graphic Designer - Technology Enhanced Learning, NHS England
  • Louise Garrahan

    Louise Garrahan

    Senior Marketing and Communications Officer - Technology Enhanced Learning, NHS England

Editorial team

Jacqueline Pattman, Chartered Physiotherapist, ATACP
Julie Dixon, Chartered Physiotherapist, ATACP
Sarah Wratten, Chartered Physiotherapist, ATACP
Kate Bretherwick, Chartered Physiotherapist, ATACP
Oliver Krouwel, Chartered Physiotherapist, ATACP
Kate McSwiney, Chartered Physiotherapist, ATACP

How to access

To access this elfh programme, you will require a Learning Hub account. If you do not have one, then you can register by selecting the Register button below. Note that if you hold a full elfh account, you can sign into the Learning Hub using your existing login credentials.

Register >

To view the Aquatic Activity and Swimming for Health programme, select the View button below.  If you already have a Learning Hub account, you will also be able to login and access the resources within the programme.

View >

NHS healthcare staff in England – ESR

The Aquatic Activity and Swimming for Health programme is also available to NHS healthcare staff via the Electronic Staff Record (ESR). Accessing this elearning via ESR means that your completions will transfer with you throughout your NHS career.

Not an NHS organisation?

If you are not an NHS health or care organisation and therefore do not qualify for free access to the Learning Hub, you may be able to access the service if you have an existing OpenAthens account. Please go to Learning Hub and sign in with your existing credentials.

If you do not have an existing OpenAthens account, please contact elfh directly to check whether you may be eligible for access.

Registering large numbers of users

If you are an HR, IT or Practice Manager and would like to register and enrol large numbers of staff within your organisation for access onto the Aquatic Activity and Swimming for Health programme, please contact elfh directly.

Organisations wishing to use their own LMS

For HR departments wanting to know more about gaining access to courses using an existing Learning Management System please contact elfh directly to express interest.

More information

Please select the following link for more information on how to use the Learning Hub.

elfh is a NHS England programme in partnership with the NHS and professional bodies