- You are responsible for marking your child before the meet starts.
- You need to be prepared to buy a heat sheet when you get to the meet. These usually range from $3 - $20 (longer meets usually mean greater costs). Also, be prepared to pay cash for the heat sheets. (Note - you can share heat sheets with others if you want, but usually it’s nice to have your own.)
- Go through the heat sheet and find your child’s events, highlighting the event number, heat, and lane assignment.
- With a sharpie, create the grid on your child’s arm or leg. Use the numbers from the heat sheet to fill in the grid. Double check your numbers!!! Remember, girls’ events are always odd numbers and boys’ events are always even numbers!!
- Your child has to be responsible to be at his assigned lane and on the blocks at the right time. They will NOT hold the meet up for your child. Some meets also have consequences if swimmers miss their events. This can include monetary fines and making them forfeit future events.
- Parents are not allowed behind the blocks, and at many meets, no one other than swimmers, coaches, and officials are allowed down on the pool deck at all. If you have a younger swimmer, please prepare both him/her and yourself for this reality.
- Swimmers need to report in to Coach Danny before each event for final instructions for their race. They also need to report in to him again immediately following their race for coaching instruction. When you send them down to the pool deck before their race, remind them to check in with Coach Danny. When they come back, ask them if they talked to Coach Danny, and if not, send them back down. These post-race coaching sessions are really important for your child to get feedback on what they did right and what they need to change in future races.
- Warm-ups at the beginning of each session of a meet are mandatory! Our team usually has between 30-60 minutes to warm up at any particular meet. Your child needs to be at the meet pool early enough to get ready and be down at MSA’s assigned lane on time for the warm-ups. Please do not think that your child will “get tired” from the warm-ups - they are used to swimming extended periods of time at practice and, in fact, their bodies will NOT race to their full potential if they are not adequately warmed up. Please do not bring your child halfway through warm-ups because you think the warm-up time is too long. Trust Coach Danny to know what is best for the swimmers and allow him to do his job. He truly wants each child to succeed and has enough experience to know what the best course of action is.
- Most meets will have a separate warm-up/warm-down lane or pool that swimmers can use before and after individual events. Swimmers are expected to warm-up before their events (after reporting in and talking with Coach Danny) if there has been any significant time lapse since their last event. Once again, warmed-up swimmers will almost always race faster and smarter than swimmers who have not warmed up. After swimmers have reported back to Danny after their event, they will usually want to warm-down as well. This keeps muscles from cramping up after strenuous use.
- Some meets will have “crash areas” where you can bring in camp chairs/blankets/coolers, etc. Other meets will only have bleacher seating. Be prepared to come early if you want a decent seat. Many people like to purchase bleachers seats and bring them in with them. (Note that the pool in Fayetteville, AR only has bleacher seating and does not allow bleacher seats.)
- Many meets will say “No coolers allowed”. This usually means no big coolers, especially with wheels. If you have a soft-sided cooler that hangs from a strap and that will fit between bleacher seats, you’ll usually be fine.