Swim Groups

With the growth of our team over the past few years, we're very excited to bring some changes and new opportunities to the practice schedule for the 2014-2015 season. The first change is the division of the team into several groups. Whether you've been on the team before or are just joining us this season, please read through the group descriptions to see where your child should be placed  and then select a practice time for that group during registration. This will allow us to protect practice group sizes and promise the best staff ratios in our practice. The Otters team provides practice groups that do not require competition, but the River, Sea, Marine, Pre-Senior, and Senior groups are in training for competition and are expected to compete.

Here are the practice groups available for this season:

Pre-Novice - Ages 5-7

Registered as part of swim lessons instead of team registration, this is a pre-swim team option for interested learn-to-swim candidates. Sessions will be posted in September and will run weekly for six week sessions.

Novice – Ages 6-10
Swimmers from swim lessons and newer swimmers to the sport of competitive swimming. Practices are a little shorter but have even more concentrated coaching.
Prerequisite: Completion of Red Cross level 4 or equivalent, can comfortably swim 50 yards of backstroke and freestyle. 

River Otters - Ages 7-14
Of our two parts of our main practice group (river and sea), this group is for swimmers who are out of novice and starting to develop endurance while continuing stroke improvement. Competition for this group is required every two months.
Prerequisite: Past Otter, coach assessment, or graduation from Novice group. River Otters must commit to a competition schedule after their third month on the team. 

Sea Otters - Ages 9-14
A step further along a swimmer’s journey, the Sea Otters have the same practice schedule as River Otters and are beginning to do race-specific training on top of their stroke work and conditioning. 
A seasonal plan for competition culminating in a postseason finish is required for this group..
Prerequisite: At least one "B" time in current age group or six "C" times in competition. 

Pre-Seniors - Ages 11-14

Otters who are looking for more practice times per week, advancing in their focus on competition and development as a swimmer, and show interest in doing strength training, should join the Pre-Senior group. Competition for this group is required every month.
Prerequisite: Coach assessment and approval. 

Seniors have strong but focused pool training coupled with strength training that takes advantage of the YW's excellent facilities. Plyometrics, TR suspension, ropes, track, and many other types of workouts are included in the daily sessions for Seniors. Competition is required for Seniors every month.


Please call the coaching office at 612-215-4224 to schedule a tryout during practice, or Click Here to send us an email . Practice groups are flexible from month to month, but a swimmer should stay in the same practice group over the course of a single month.