Hi Icaro, Tell us a bit about yourself…
I’m from Brazil but have lived in the UK for over 12 years now. I’m a very calm and collected person but once I get to know people they get to see my playful and witty side. I don’t take myself too seriously but I know when it’s time to have fun and when it’s time be focussed and professional. I believe my parents did a great job to teach me good manners, to be polite, respectful and above all to teach me that I’m no better than anyone.
There’s a popular saying that sums up a lot about my personality: “Everyone you meet is fighting a battle you may know nothing about. So, be kind always”

How long have you worked with Swimming Rocks…

I’ve joined the brilliant Swimming Rocks team in September 2013. I was working for other swim schools but had always heard great things about Swimming Rocks via my good friend who worked for Claire ( the owner) at that time. I had to wait a while, but when an opportunity arose to join their coaching team, I took and have never looked back! I now own my own Swimming Rocks franchise in Chelsea Blue Harbour and help train and mentor new swimming teachers at Swimming Rocks.

We hear that you might have been a Brazilian national basketball player, tell us a bit about that…

Yes, thats true! I very nearly took a professional basketball contract in Brazil. I grew up doing all sorts of sports, training and competing in countless tournaments for school, high school and university teams. Amongst my favourite sports was swimming, but growing up my biggest passion was basketball. I trained and competed at several competitive levels and was offered a contract to become a professional player when I was seventeen years old. It all sounds great (and it was) but it meant that i would have to sacrifice my studies in order play professionally and in Brazil, the sport isn’t as well established as football so I had to decline the contract. However I still enjoy amateur leagues here in London and I am a three time champion here!

What do you love about your job…

The first thing I love about my job is working with children, they make my work so much fun and entertaining. The second is big sense of satisfaction I get from seeing my students learning and improving their swimming skills. It’s such a rewarding career.

How did you get into teaching swimming…

In 1999, I studied Physical Education in Brazil. At the same time, I was presented with a few options for a professional career pathway and I decided to start teaching swimming. My first contact with teaching swimming was for a charity who offered weekend lessons for under-privileged children. It was an instant love for the job, the immensely rewarding feeling you get from knowing you are helping someone learn something new, the influxes you have on their lives and knowing that this skill could save their lives was and is brilliant!

What question do you get asked the most…

Easy… The questionI always get asked is “how are you so patient?!”

If you had one piece of advice to give parents, what would it be…

Persevere! Know that swimming is a life saving skill, a great sporting activity and brings countless healthy benefits for both children and adults so don’t give up! Everyone learns at their own pace.

And finally, we know you are one of the most requested swim teachers in London. Tell us your top 5 teaching tips…

This is hard as there are so many points I could tell you. But here are my top 5;

  • Start your children swimming as early as you can.
  • Ask your children’s teacher for tips and exercises that you can do bath time, this will speed up their learning experience.
  • Be mindful and respect every students individual learning pace.
  • Work hard to be as creative and as inventive as you can when helping students learn a new exercise or technique.
  • Always refresh your knowledge and stay constantly updated with new swimming techniques and innovations.

Icaro works out of the Swimming Rocks Chelsea Blue Harbour Spa offering private ( 1:1) lessons to children and adults. Book your free trial lesson with Icaro or another Swimming Rocks Instructors by emailing info@swimmingrocks.co.uk