Joining the Team and Fees
YMCA/USA Questions


How do I register/join the Mako Swim Team?
Contact Jason Paige, Senior Aquatic Director at (203) 775-1077 or [email protected]  The coaching staff will assist in scheduling an evaluation to determine the best level for your swimmer. 

What are the fees to swim on this team?
Fees vary by age group. The fee structure can be found under the forms tab on the ""About" menu.

What are meet fees?  What do they cover and how do I pay them?
Fees are charged for most meets ranging in price from $10.00 - $30.00 depending on the meet.  You can monitor your meet fees account through your profile on our website.  Statements will be issued frequently throughout the season and it is the responsibility of each family to make sure their account maintains a positive balance.  Meets fees also include a swimmers USA registration payment as well as meet surcharges that cover coaches transportation, meals and accommodations when necessary. A deposit of $150.00 - $200.00 into a swimmer's meet fee account is recommended at the time of registration.  Families that incur a balance owed in their meet fee account will be unable to sign up for upcoming meets and are asked to contact the team administrator to  make a deposit into their account. Payments can be made through the swim team office either by credit card, check or cash.

Is there any financial assistance available for swim families?

  Financial Assistance: YMCA memberships and programs are open to everyone.  When the costs of our services prevent an individual or family from participating, the YMCA will offer financial assistance, as funds are available, to those who are eligible.  See the Member Service Desk at the YMCA for more information.


Where does the team practice?
The Mako Swim Team practices at the Greenknoll Youth Development and Aquatics Center in Brookfield, CT.  Installed in 2018, a removable bubble enclosure and new locker rooms allow us to use our 6-lane 50m pool year round.  The use of movable bulkheads allow our team to utilize the pool as a 12-lane 25 yard or meter pool depending on the season.

What does my child need to bring to practice?
Swimmers should bring with them to all practices: A water bottle, 2 pairs of goggles, and 2 caps, ( if caps are worn) and their groups required training equipment. Swimmers should refrain from wearing your team "competition" suits to practice as they will wear out much quicker.

How are swimmers placed in practice groups?
The Mako Swim Club coaching staff will perform new swimmer group evaluations two times during the year or privately by appointment.  The swimmers age provides the coaching staff with a starting point as to what level should be considered; however the final decision is contingent upon the swimmers skill and endurance levels.  In determining progressions within the program for current Mako swimmers we evaluate skill and endurance levels as well as commitment levels in regards to practice attendance and meet attendance.  

How often should my child go to practice? 
Consistency is paramount to a swimmers development; however we understand that conflicts will arise.  We recommend that swimmers try to  meet the following group attendance suggestions: Developmental  - 2 to 3 times a week, Age Group,  - 3 to 6, Senior -  5 to 6


What is the difference between Short Course and Long Course seasons?
Short Course and Long Course Seasons:  The Short Course (SC) Season runs from September to March with some championships in April.  The primary SC competition venue is a 25-yard or 25-meter pool.  The Long Course (LC) Season runs from April through most of July with some championships in August.  The primary LC competition venue is a 50-meter pool.

Must my child swim in both YMCA and USA meets?
The Mini Mako Squad is an optional competitive group.  Swimmers in that group do not need to be registered with USA Swimming to be on the team but must register to compete.  All other groups will compete in both YMCA and USA meets; therefore, all swimmers in the other groups are required to be USA Swimming members as well as YMCA members.  Even though swimmers are registered for both YMCA and USA meets you can select what meets your child will attend and/or what days they will swim on.   

What is the difference between YMCA swim meets and USA swim meets? 
YMCA swim meets and USA swim meets all operate under the USA swimming rules; however they differ in regards to sanctioning.  This means that results, although official, from YMCA meets may not be uploaded into the USA swimming database. 

What is an “Age Group Qualifier” meet?
An Age Group Qualifier meet is a USA swim meet that offers many of the same events that will be in the Age Group Championship meet at the end of the season. At a qualifier the swimmers earn times that can be used to make the qualifying times for the Championships.

What does the term “aging up” refer to?
You usually swim your age as of the first day of the meet for USA swimming.

What is the “CT YMCA Swimming and Diving Championships”?
This is our YMCA League Championship meet and it is open to all swimmers registered to the Mako Swim Club in good financial standing. 


How does the swim team communicate?
Primarily  via the website www.makoswim.org, as members of the Mako team you are responsible for staying up to date by visiting the website 2 – 3 times per week. Emails are also sent on a regular basis.  

When can I talk to the Coach? 
The best way is to send and email or call to arrange a scheduled meeting.  Coaches may also have some availability after practices. It is important not to interrupt practices and swimmer coaching time.


What does my child need to bring to a meet?
Swimmers should bring with them: Team suit, team cap, extra cap, towel, water bottle, 2 pairs of goggles, and a healthy snack.  Deck sandals are recommended for the deck and locker rooms.  For USA meets, depending on location a deck chair, drink, and something to keep them busy.  (Keep in mind it’s wet and there will be no secure area for valuables.)

I need a new team suit, how can I get one?
Suits can be ordered through Metro Swim Shop or purchased at the team suit fitting in the beginning of the season.  The best alternative is to purchase a plain black Speedo lycra or aquablade suit which will blend in well with our team look.

How do I know which meets to sign my child up for?
All meets on the schedule are planned to serve as opportunities for evaluations and qualifying for other meets.  It is strongly recommended that swimmers attend the scheduled meets.  Like a soccer team or baseball team, the Mako Swim Club competes against other teams and strives for competitive success.  Keep in mind that some meets have time requirements and cutoffs; therefore a swimmer must qualify at a prior meet in order to compete. Event details are posted under each event on the events page. 

How do I scratch from a meet?
Email your coach as soon as you know that you must scratch – allow as much notice as you can – email may not be effective on the day of meet. Advance notice is extremely helpful. 

Whom do I contact if my child is sick or must scratch the day of a meet?
You can email your child's coach or try to get a message to the coach via another parent in your child’s age group who is attending the meet. Exchange cell phone numbers with other parents.  The Mako parent online directory is a great help for this. 


Do I need to volunteer at meets?
Yes. Volunteering is a critical and necessary part of any swim program. Volunteering can be accomplished at meets or via other non meet volunteer opportunities.  If volunteering requirements are not met a fee is charged for each point not fulfilled. See section 9 in the Mako Handbook for full details.

What are volunteer hours? How many volunteer hours do I need to earn?
The team cannot run without adequate parent support. All families must volunteer for at least one job at one session of any meet their swimmer participates in. See section 9 in the Mako Handbook for full details. 

I volunteered at an event but was not signed up. I need help getting my volunteer hour credit – how do I get credit?
Contact our Volunteer Coordinator, Beth Falder ([email protected]) with an email that explains the details.

What is my Volunteer Obligation?
Recently, the RYWC Mako Swim Club moved from to a system where parents are asked to volunteer for one job at one session of a meet their child is swimming in.  Timing, and many other jobs that run either half the session or the full session complete that obligation.  Other jobs such as meet computer operator, timing system operator, runner, concession jobs, apparel sales and other jobs fulfill the obligation as well. Every effort is made to break the jobs into smaller sessions whenever possible.  You will be asked to sign up for the jobs on the web site.   If you do not sign up, you will be assigned a job and contacted by the Volunteer Coordinator about your assignment.  The coordinator will monitor that each family with a swimmer in the meet, participates in the volunteering.

If you have question about your seasonal obligation, please forward those questions to our Team Administrator.

Volunteer jobs  are posted on our website for each event. Typically the jobs are posted after 9pm on the Sunday prior to an upcoming meet.  In order to see opportunities to fulfill your volunteer obligations, from the main page of the team website, click on the Meets and Events tab on the top of the website and you’ll see a Job Signup for any events that require donation or job volunteers.

How do I sign up to volunteer?
Signup via "Job Sign Up" button on our Team Unify website