Group Placement


Each swimmer is placed into a practice group by the Coaching Staff when they join the team. The group placement decision will take into consideration a variety of objective and subjective factors such as age, physical maturity, social and emotional maturity, skill/technique development, level of aerobic conditioning, experience in the sport, and the swimmer’s level of commitment to the training group’s practice. The group placement decision is made with concern for each swimmer’s long term development as a competitive swimmer.

The Coaching Staff aims to put swimmers where they belong physiologically, psychologically, and developmentally, coupled with a desired level of commitment. Swimmers will not be placed in groups based solely on convenience and social/peer groups.

Group placements are and will be solely at the discretion of the SWIFT Aquatics Coaching Staff. Coaches will evaluate swimmers based on the factors listed below.

► Stroke Development Progression

  • Discovery
  • Competitive
  • Reach 

Age Group Progression

  • Competitive
  • Performance

Senior Progression

  • Competitive
  • Reach
  • High Performance

Factors that weigh into group placement and group move-up decisions: 
(1) Level of commitment to practice attendance and competition expectations
(2) Training group effort and behavior
(3) Psychological maturity level
(4) Physiological needs
(5) Competitive maturity
(6) Independence and self-reliance
(7) Age
(8) Leadership abilities
(9) Coach-ability.

Swimmers may be asked to move into different lanes during practice. This does not effect the swimmer’s group placement. 


The overall goal in creating progressive training groups is to develop skill proficient athletes that are able to advance their training and competitive swimming career through consistent practice and competition events. The integration process builds upon a prerequisite skill set that must be in place before advancement is pursued. The following guidelines are in place for the best interest of the athlete, the athlete’s family and the integrity of the various training groups on SWIFT Aquatics. They are also in place to allow the Coaching Staff the ability to maintain group integrity and allow a thoughtful athlete driven advancement curve that ensures long term athlete development.

The Coaching Staff is responsible for all group move-up decisions.

1. Group move-ups will be considered during the months of August/September and April; at the beginning of each swim season.

2. The athlete may make a complete move integrating themselves into the new group if they are skill and commitment ready.

3. The athlete may make a gradual move partially participating in the new group as well as the previous group for an adjustment period to be determined by the all the coaches.

4. The athlete and their family will not make any group changes unless they are aware of the group requirements and have committed to adhering to those expectations.

5. If there are any questions among any of the individuals (athlete, family or group coaches) the Head Coach may become involved as a final voice on the merit of a group move.