Squad Criteria

Squad Moveup Criteria

Below is an overview of the 5 CAST training squads. Each one has a brief description of the squad’s goals followed by the criteria for moving up to the next group. Squad moveups are considered by the coaching staff every 2-3 months, depending on the group and where we are at in our seasonal training cycle.

Swimmers wishing to move up to the next squad should fill out a goal sheet in order to meet with their primary coach and get specific details on the skills they can work on to achieve that goal. Goal sheets and the subsequent one-on-one meetings are offered twice per year; once in the fall and once in the spring.

 

Squad moveups always take into account the physical and mental maturity of the swimmer, with the long term health and development of the individual swimmer in mind. Each swimmer’s development and needs are unique, which necessitates a mix of objective and subjective standards. Swimmers are encouraged to check with their coaches if they have questions about their training or their squad level!

 

C Squad recommended attendance: 3 times per week

The primary goal of C squad is to develop swimming fundamentals through:

  • Learning all 4 strokes
  • Introducing the basics of streamlining, kicking, sculling, diving, and competitive turns

 

Swimmers wanting to move from C to B Squad should:

  • Show the focus and skills required to complete full B squad practices 
  • Have consistent, legal strokes and turns for a 50 of each stroke
  • Be under 6:00 for a combined 100 IM and a 200 freestyle, with legal turns
  • Know :00 and :30 intervals and :05 in between swimmers
  • Properly execute the basic sculls and drills for each stroke

 

B Squad recommended attendance: 3 times/week

The primary goal of B squad is to learn how to train through:

  • Developing efficient stroke technique through drills and sets
  • Emphasizing underwater dolphin kicks and breaststroke pulldowns
  • Learning the basics of pacing and race strategy

 

Swimmers wanting to Move from B to A Squad should:

  • Have a work ethic consistent and high enough to swim full A Squad practices
  • Be able to use the pace clock on :10 and :15 intervals and keep track of the number of repeats in a set
  • Be able to swim 100 yards of each stroke legally 
  • Be able to complete 6x50 kick @1:10 
  • Have a 500 free and 200 IM time combined under 10:00

 

 

 

A Squad recommended attendance: 4 times/week

The primary goal of A squad is to learn how to compete through: 

  • The introduction of high intensity sets with demanding intervals
  • Keeping quality stroke technique for 200 yards and longer
  • Striving to qualify for and compete at championship level meets 

 

Swimmers wanting to Move from A to Junior Squad should: 

  • Have a work ethic consistent and high enough to swim 2 hour Junior Squad practices
  • Be able to use the pace clock on all types of intervals 
  • Have proper execution of all drills and sculls, and be able to swim 200 yards of all strokes
  • Be at least 11 years old
  • Be able to complete 10x100s Free on 1:30, 10x50s kick on 1:05 for all 3 kicks, and 8x50s scull on 1:10
  • Be able to execute underwater work for all strokes (kickouts and pulldowns) past the flags at race pace
  • Have their 100 freestyle under 1:06, 200 IM under 2:40, and 500 freestyle under 6:30

 

 

Junior Squad recommended attendance: 5 times/week

The primary goal of Junior squad is to train for competitive goals and lifelong swimming through:

  • Completing challenging practices, including threshold, endurance, aerobic and anaerobic training sets
  • Expanding the “swim resume” in order to be able to compete in every event offered
  • Developing the mental skills to compete at peak capability, including pre-race routines, visualization, and toughness

Swimmers wanting to move from Junior to Senior Squad should: 

  • Have the endurance and dedication to swim full Senior practices, as well as the attendance and attitude consistent with the leadership role that comes from being on Senior squad
  • Maintain average attendance of at least 4 practices per week
  • Be able to complete 20x100s Free @1:20 and 10x100s kick @1:40
  • Swim the 500 free under 6:00, the 100 free under :58, and 200 IM under 2:25


 

Senior Squad recommended attendance: 6 times per week

The primary goal of Senior Squad is to pursue swimming beyond the local level by:

  • Aiming to qualify for and attending Senior level meets (Senior Zones and above) and/or planning to swim at the collegiate level
  • Completing the collegiate level practices offered by the coaches during Senior Squad practices
  • Embodying the leadership role of a committed swimmer who supports their teammates in and out of the water