MNswim bases its mission and its identity upon four core values–integrity, sportsmanship, the pursuit of excellence, and fun. As an organization, we recently took a close look at these principles and made the commitment to renew awareness of them to our members, parents and sponsors. Over the coming months, we will work to embed these shared values into all we do–from daily club practices, to our meets and competitions, and into our social gatherings and professional interactions each day.
It is our hope that our swimming community will have a shared understanding of each core value and that we will commit to work together as a team to incorporate them into all we do. We have put together a Core Values and MNswim Firsts Recognition Programs to recognize when athletes, officials, coaches, and others demonstrate the core values.
To serve athletes and the swimming community by providing great experiences in and out of the water.
It is expected that everyone who shares a common love of the sport of swimming will conduct themselves ethically and honestly. As a result, we trust one another to abide by the rules and regulations governing our sport. With trust and open communication comes the ability to resolve conflicts respectfully. And, when a conflict of interest does arise, it will be made known so that our processes and governance remain transparent and unbiased. USA Swimming/MNswim members in good standing have equal opportunity to participate in programs and services. Participation restrictions will only be made according to requirements/qualification disclosed to the membership or via public law/code. All policies, rules and procedures are administered consistently to all members. The application of rules or policies is never intended to harm individual members, but when a penalty, limitation or revocation of member rights is imposed, there is a right of appeal (via procedures in the USA Swimming Rulebook).
Good sportsmanship is demonstrated when everyone–members, fans, and parents–show respect for themselves, teammates, opponents and coaches. True sportsmanship is built on the “golden rule,” treating others the way you want to be treated. Members are expected to know the rules of the sport and never intentionally break them. Like integrity, sportsmanship relies upon good communication. Clear expectations are essential, and when necessary, steps should be taken quickly–and in good faith–to resolve conflicts respectfully. Safe and healthy behaviors are always to be encouraged. Swimming must be enjoyable and good sportsmanship allows our athletes to have fun! Remember, participation is for our swimmers, not the adults.
Pursuit of Excellence
As a community, we recognize and celebrate all accomplishments–not everyone will be a national, state or regional champion. Our objective is that all swimmers have the opportunity to participate in swim programs that provide for long-term growth–both athletic and personal. Pursuit of excellence is a progressive process that leads to excellence on many levels; consistent training, skill development and improvement creates confidence and lasting success for all athletes, both in and out of the pool. Swimmers excel at different levels and, as such, excellence can be measured on many levels as well. And finally, pursuit of excellence is a team effort–everyone plays a role in creating a supportive environment that leads to individual excellence for each athlete; this includes swimmers, parents, coaches, officials, and MNswim as an administrative organization.
People are involved in swimming for many reasons and with different goals. But common to most is having a sense enjoyment of the sport. Adding “Fun” to the core values reflects a common objective and benefit expressed by members and the swimming community, and reminds us that with young athletes “fun” has to be at the front of the sport if we want to sustain it.