The IncrediBULLETS are the first level of our swim club. This group is for our youngest swimmers and those just getting started in the sport of competitive swimming. Practice for the IncrediBULLETS are offered twice (2) per week for 45 minutes each day. We also offer the occasional Saturday practice for this group when possible. We encourage swimmers to try and attend all practices when offered. The emphasis of this group is teaching the four competitive strokes and other competitive skills through drilling and fun activities. Athletes and coaches really focus on proper technique. Swimmers in this group may compete in any or all four (4) of the following annual hosted events: Speedo Fall Open, Speedo Thanksgiving Classic, Speedo Invitational, and the Academy Bullets Meet of Champions.
Bronze Team is the second level of our swim club. Swimmers who are 9/10 and just starting out in the sport typically fall into this group, as well as all our 8&U swimmers. Practice for the Bronze Team are 5 days per week for 1 hour each day. We encourage swimmers to try and attend at least three of those practices per week. The emphasis of this group is teaching the four competitive strokes and other competitive skills through drilling and fun activities. Athletes begin to learn the use of the pace clock and also begin swimming "sets." Swimmers in this group compete in dual meets, USS meets, and any Academy Bullets championship meet they qualify for.
Silver I is the third level of our Aurora site. Individuals are primarily 9-11 years of age and practice is 75 minutes per day, six days a week. Swimmers are encouraged to attend 3-4 practices per week. This group continues the teaching of the four competitive strokes and more emphasis is placed on swimming "sets." Dryland training is introduced during practices. Swimmers in this group compete in dual meets, USS meets, and any Academy Bullets championship meet they qualify for.
This is the fourth level within our Aurora site. Typical athlete ages in this group range from 10-13 years of age. Practice is offered 6 days per week for 90 minutes each day. Dryland training is continued through practice. This group begins to focus on higher level aerobic training, as well as other energy systems. Stroke technique is still an emphasis within the group. Goal setting and race strategy are introduced to the athletes. Swimmers in this group compete in dual meets, USS meets, and any Academy Bullets championship meet for which they qualify.
Gold Team is the top level of our age group program. Swimmers in this group are typically 11-14 years old. Practices are offered 6 days per week for 2 hours each day. During the summer and holidays, additional practices are offered as "doubles". Athletes in this group typically attend 5 practices per week or 85% of practices offered over a month. This group is designed for our top age group athletes determined to take their swimming to the next level. A stronger emphasis is placed on the conditioning of energy systems from previous groups. Swimmers continue to incorporate dryland on a regular basis. Goal setting and end of the season focus are constantly reinforced. Swimmers in this group compete in dual meets, USS meets, and any Academy Bullets championship meet for which they qualify.
Senior Team is for our high school aged athletes who are looking to continue their swimming at the next level. Practice is offered 6 days per week for 2 hours each day. Swimmers in this group typically attend 4-5 practices per week. This group will consist of younger athletes (freshman & sophomores) taking steps towards advanced swimming and older high school athletes not yet ready for advanced training. The emphasis of this group is the continued development of the energy systems and stroke technique. Dryland training is offered 3 days per week for 40 minutes prior to each practice. Swimmers in this group compete in dual meets, USS meets, and any Academy Bullets championship meet for which they qualify.
Elite Team is the highest level within the Academy Bullets Swim Club. Swimmers on the Elite Team make a year-round commitment to the sport and our club. Practice is offered 6 days per week for 2 1/2-3 hours each day. Weight training is part of practice for 1 hour a day, 3 days per week. During the summer and holidays, additional practices are offered as "doubles". The Elite Team trains at UIC during the summer 2 days per week to get in some LC training. Dryland training is typically done 3 days per week as part of practice. The focus of this group is excellence at the national level. Athletes in this group must keep a 90% attendance to be allowed to train in the group. Swimmers falling below that attendance mark will be moved to Senior Team. More specific training is done based on stroke and distance (ie sprint, mid-distance, distance, IM, etc). Most athletes in this group go on to swim in college...many of them with some type of swimming scholarship. Swimmers wishing to join this group must be placed by Coach Bill Schalz and Coach Todd Capen. All swimmers in this group are expected to compete for the Academy Bullets in the highest level meet for which they qualify.