When are the swim meets, How do the swim meets work, What volunteers are needed? Click Here for meet schedule and swim meet information.
When will we get our T-shirts and swim caps?
Seminole Aquatics logo swim caps will be handed out the first day prior to the start of the morning and afternoon groups. T-shirts should be in during the first week. If you will not be able to pick up your team apparel on the first day, apparel will be available through the pool office.
Will my child be staying in the same group during the entire summer?
For the most part, plan on your child staying with the same coach. It's easy to think that our own children should be in a more advanced group, especially when they seem to be doing well, or are among the strongest in the group. However, the coaches are discussing these issues daily, and there are almost always specific reasons for either keeping or moving kids within the training groups. If you have a real concern, please wait until before or after practice, and then schedule a time with the coach to discuss it. You can also email Head Coach Tony Ackerson at [email protected], and he can forward it to the appropriate coach.
Will my child get enough individualized instruction being in a group of swimmers? Swimming is a sport of repetitive teaching and drills, almost always done in a large group setting. For example, all of the Olympic-level superstars in the sport are part of teams like ours, training with 30 to 50 others. And most of them came up through entry-level programs like this one. The notion of individualized, private coaching just isn't the way the sport works.
On swim teams, coaches teach by demonstrating a specific skill, or a component of that skill. The swimmers swim laps attempting to emulate that given skill, and coaches make suggestions and attempt to correct deficiencies. But swim teams should not be confused with private lessons. It can be frustrating for a novice parent to watch some children in the group swim effortlessly, while their own child struggles. But time has shown us that each child progresses at entirely different rates and some of the greatest swimmers that our club team has ever produced were some of the most awkward-looking swimmers in their earliest stages. There is a certain amount of trust that the parent has to place in the program. And it should be remembered that the great emphasis of the program is to have children enjoy the swim team and improve their abilities over the eight weeks. Time and time again, it ends up that the most successful people in the sport were the ones that had fun all along the way, particularly when they were starting out. Swimming is a sport that is filled with stories of kids that quit before they reached high school, and almost always the root of the problem was a parent that was constantly evaluating the child's performance.
Can we switch between groups due to weather, camps, or vacations?
Unfortunately, no. The reason for this is that the sizes of these training groups were carefully determined and to start shifting kids in and out due to weather issues, camps, or vacations will cause problems within the groups. Everyone at some point during the summer have their kids in camps and families take vacations, so it is impossible to accommodate and keep track of shifting swimmers. We also deal with afternoon and evening thundershowers which are a part of life in Florida and it is inevitable that some days will be rained out. Our facility has a policy of up to 30 minutes out of the pool when thunder or lightning is present. We also have a lightning detection system at the pool that tells our staff the time and location of lightning strikes that aren’t obvious to the eye or ear. The bottom line is your child’s safety, and we will not take risks with children, parents, or coaches just to get a few extra minutes of practice in.
Where can I get a Seminole Aquatics swimsuit for my child?
Contact Bart Raub ([email protected]) if you'd like to order a team suit, but they are not required. The suits they sell are made by Speedo and have the Seminole Aquatics logo on them. It's a black suit, but we don't have any requirement that you wear an official team suit. Our colors are black, orange and white, but you can wear any solid black "Speedo-style" suit if you want to stay close to our color scheme. Kids can wear any suit they want for practice, but girls should wear a one-piece to meets. Bart also has a great selection of practice suits and goggles.
What can we do as parents to help our kids develop more quickly?
Again, you can best support your child by absolutely refraining from correcting the child's stroke, or making well-intentioned suggestions about how he or she can get faster. This creates a lot of problems and usually turns kids off to swimming. The best swimming parents are the ones that share in their child's sport by asking one simple question: "Did you have fun today?" That's what it's all about, even at the elite levels. When it's not fun anymore, they quit--even as Olympians. Trust our coaches to do what is best for the kids and realize what a long-term thing swimming is. So, as parents, come to practice, get a chair, sit far away from your child's group, and enjoy watching your child have fun.
What happens at the end of the program?
After our end of season party (given on the final day of the program), Stingrays swimmers that want to continue may do so with the Seminole Aquatics team. The monthly cost and registration information will be made available by the end of the summer. Please watch for upcoming emails about transitioning into the year-round team.
One more thing:
We have an incredibly clean pool, but kids still get ear infections when their ears don’t completely dry out after swimming in any body of water. A good thing to do is to get an over-the-counter drying aid ("Swim Ear" or "Auro-Dri"), and use it faithfully every day. This will prevent most ear infections.