December 29, 2019
Dear VSC Families,
With the new year approaching and almost everyone has completed re-registration it seems like a good time to review information for returning families and provide information for the families.
MAAPP (Minor Athlete Abuse Prevention Policy)
As VSC navigates MAAPP and implements this critically important policy, we would like everyone to become familiar with every aspect. Please click on the link and thoroughly read through this. At meets, when timing, you will also be asked to read and sign that you agree to adhere to the USA MAAPP.
One of the most important aspects that I would like to focus on is the locker rooms, specifically at our practice pools. First and foremost, no parent should be in the locker rooms regardless of the age of your child . Marshall Center has family changing rooms that you are welcome to access as long as you are with your child, not any other athlete on the team. At WSSB it is a bit more challenging as there are no family changing rooms. If you need to help your minor athlete, please have them dry off on the deck and then they may walk down the hallway to the restrooms as long as no other minor athlete is in there. For many of you with young minor athletes this may seem inconvenient but none-the-less is critical that we all adhere to this policy for the protection of all minor athletes. Of course there are situations that arise that may require an adult in the locker room such as injury, etc. We will handle these situations as they arise.
Locker Room Behavior
Locker Rooms are for changing into and out of suits only. This is not a place to play. We have noticed an increase with swimmers playing in the locker rooms. Swimmers should spend no more than 5 minutes in the locker rooms getting ready for practice and no more than 10 minutes after practice. If your swimmer is having difficulty after practice getting themselves out in 10 minutes consider making them shower and change at home.
VSC coaches have noticed an increase in swimmers arriving late to practice. This is difficult for many reasons. First, when practice has started we have swimmers arranged based on their ability and the number of swimmer present at the start of practice. When a swimmer is late often we have to stop practice and rearrange lane assignments. This is a disruption to those who were on time. Second, the beginning of practice is critical to injury prevention. We understand that sometimes varying schedules prevent you from getting your swimmer to practice on time. Just remind them to hustle out as quickly as possible.
Facility Use- We Are Guests
Please remember that we rent the facilities that we use and essentially we are guests there. We can be “uninvited” at any time. We are aware that for younger siblings, not yet swimming on the team, a practice session can seem very long and boring. However, there should be no running, throwing or kicking balls, playing tag, or other similar activities in the hallways or facility. Consider taking the younger siblings to the park during nicer weather or during colder weather, the public library just minutes away. You could bring card games, coloring books, or other quiet activities for them if you plan on staying at the pool. Which leads us to voice level. Please make sure that we are using a respectful volume in the facilities as well. We should not be relying on coaches to police this type of behavior. Don’t you want your swimmers coach have 100% focus on the practice that your child is participating in? It may seem awkward to say something to another parent but please, help out and remind them that we want to be good guests and continue to be given the privilege of using the facilities. One last thing about facilities use: Please stay in the hallway or observation areas. All the rooms at Marshall Center and WSSB are available for rent, which we have not paid for. If a door is open, please do not enter the room to borrow a chair or let your children play. Thank you!
Honor Coaches Time
Our coaches have commitments outside of the pool and should not have to wait around for upwards of 30 or more minutes after practice. Swimmers should be out of the locker rooms in 10 minutes or less. Likewise, parents should be at the pool by the end of practice, not when they believe their swimmer will be out of the locker room. Coaches should not have to police how long swimmers take in the locker room and they are not allowed to enter the locker rooms to make sure swimmers are being safe and respectful. We request that parents are there to help and make sure that our coaches are not having to stay on their own time.
I want to thank you all for taking the time to read this. It was a long, yet very necessary email for our members. If everyone pitches in we will continue to see more growth and success as a team. Enjoy the rest of winter break.
See you at the pool,
VSC Coaching Staff