The Developmental Squad consists of the Minnow, Trout and Dolphin Training Groups. The core focus of each group is to develop proper stroke technique and efficiency in the water. This is a progressive process with swimmers advancing to the next level based on their performance and ability to demonstrate proficiency in the skills developed in each group. Due to the sequential nature of swim training, it is essential that formal training develop in this way. If a child does not develop a critical skill in the sequence, they will continue to struggle in other areas and may develop technique inefficiencies that can harm their performance over time. The majority of our new and beginning swimmers will be placed in the Minnow and Trout groups. Advancement into the Dolphin group is dependent on each swimmers level of experience and speed.
Children will progress through the levels as they develop their technique and build stamina. The progression is entirely dependent on the child's ability to take what they learn and apply it as they swim. All children are different. Some children learn faster or are more mature and therefore, move through the entry levels faster and some require more repetition of skills. There is no rush - swimming is an activity that can be enjoyed over a lifetime.
Minnow Training Group
This is our entry level training group. Children in this group will learn the basics of balance and form in Freestyle and Backstroke. They will learn how to streamline, demonstrate bilateral breathing, dive and will be introduced to the Butterfly and Breast stroke. Time management, listening and lane etiquette skills will be developed. Children with no formal swim experience will begin in this group, regardless of age, and will progress at their own speed and development. Usually older swimmers adapt rather quickly and are able to demonstrate the skills necessary to proceed to the Trout group in a very short period of time.
Trout Training Group
This is our intermediate level training group and where swimmers will learn how to correctly demonstrate all four competitive swim strokes, starts, turns and finishes. Training for this group will focus on proper stroke technique and building stamina in preparation for successful performance at swim competitions. Time management, listening, lane etiquette and knowledge of swimming rules and regulations will be developed. Swimmers will learn to be responsible for their actions, be accountable to their coach and team mates and develop sportsmanship and team spirit.
Dolphin Training Group
This is the highest level training group of the Developmental Squad where swimmers are able to demonstrate proficiency in all four competitive swim strokes. This level has performance requirements based on the MS State Championship Qualifying Standards for entry into the Dolphin training group. Training for this group will focus on developing stamina while maintaining stroke efficiency. Swimmers will demonstrate knowledge of all B.E.S.T. stroke drills, swimming rules and regulations, time management, listening and lane etiquette skills. Swimmers will learn appropriate training terminology and racing strategies. They will develop and demonstrate leadership skills and demonstrate sportsmanship and team spirit. As swimmers progress through this level of training, they will either continue as "fitness swimmers" or can choose to commit their time and energies to swimming as their main sport, seeking further development and working toward advancement into the Transitional Training group.