October 13, 2015
This Your First Swim Meet as a parent?
Well, welcome to organized chaos! Really, the organizers know exactly what is going on, but to new parents it can look a bit crazy. Things to do:
* Get a team cap from me. Swimmers do not have to wear a cap at the meet, but if they do wear a cap, it has to be a HRV team cap. $4 for latex ones, I have them at the pool.
* Buy a heat sheet so you can follow along as the meet progresses. This will be available at the front desk as you come to the meet in the morning. Later in the day they are sold at the concession stand.
* Be to the meet early. Warm ups start at 7:45am. If you arrive at 8:30am, it will be tough to find a spot to put your chair or sit down. Bring a chair, blanket, extra towels, healthy snacks, and water or gatorade to drink. The team tries to sit in the baby pool (they drain it!) Foods to eat? Foods that the swimmers is familiar with are best. Do they need to eat huge amounts of food? Absolutely not! Small amounts throughout the day work best. Sometimes kids get nervous the night before and have a hard time eating dinner. Totally normal - that's why you bring all those healthy snacks for when the nerves wear off....
* Jump in and help out. Makes the day go by much more quickly!
* Read THIS from USA Swimming to help get a handle on things.
* And read THIS as a primer on the four strokes you are about to see.
Questions? Just ask! And remember, it's all about the process. Let them have fun, don't worry too much if for some reason they miss an event or get disqualified. It's all a learning process. The goal is to have fun and try something new. Getting nervous is part of the process, and once they dive in the nerves all go away.