Glossary of Swimming Terms for the Novice Swim Parent
DISQUALIFICATION (D.Q.) - when a swimmer is disqualified by a meet Official for a stroke violation, early/false start or inappropriate conduct.
DISTRICTS - This is the YMCA championship meet in March. There are certain time standards (see Qualifying Times) that a swimmer must attain to qualify for this meet. The top 6 swimmers in each event advance to states.
EVENT - Any race defined by age, sex, stroke and distance. May also be a series of dives ‘in one division.
HEAT - A divided segment of an event in which there are too many swimmers to compete at one time.
JOs - This stands for Junior Olympics. It is a highly-competitive meet for swimmers ages 14 & under who meet certain qualifying times.
INDIVIDUAL MEDLEY (IM) - An event in which one person swims a series of specified distances in each of the four competitive strokes: back, breast, butterfly and free.
LANE - The specific area in which the swimmer is assigned to swim, i.e., Lane 1, Lane 2, etc.
LAP - One length of the pool, which is 25 meters or yards. Two laps is 50, four laps is 100 etc.
LEG - The part of the relay event that is swum by a single team member.
PSYCH SHEETS - A list of swimmers entered in a meet in order of their seed time. This is often released the week of the meet to give swimmers and coaches an idea of the level of competition at a meet.
QUALIFYING TIMES - This is a set of minimum (and sometimes maximum) times a swimmer must attain in each event to be eligible for a particular swim meet. Not all times have qualifying times, but several of the meets we attend as a team do.
SCRATCH - Withdraw an individual from competition or an event.
SEED - Distribute the swimmers among the required number of heats and/or lanes according to their submitted times.During Invitationals, the swimmers with the slowest times swim in the first heat, and subsequent heats progress to the swimmers with the fastest times.