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YMCA Vs USA Swimming

What is YMCA Swimming vs USA Swimming

The Casco Bay YMCA Stripers Swim Team is primarily a YMCA swim team. We compete against other YMCA’s mostly from the state of Maine. There are 16 YMCA teams in the state of Maine that we compete against on a regular basis. There is no additional expense to swim in YMCA meets.

USA Swimming or USAS is an additional league that we swim in for those swimmers who would like a few more meets to participate in. There are 23 active USAS clubs in the state of Maine, of which 14 of them are the same YMCA teams we compete against on a regular basis. The head coach will determine which meets are best suited for the team to enter and post them on the team calendar. A meet maybe added or dropped at any time for any number of reasons.

USAS has the appearance of being more competitive, but our team takes the same philosophy to USAS meets as YMCA meets. The reason USAS meets appear more competitive is; at most YMCA meets there are two teams there. There might not always be someone competitive in your event. However, at USAS meets, the meets are open to all the teams nearly ensuring if you are good at an event, there will be others there as well.

Many of the USAS meets are multiple days and multiple sessions. Meaning, only some age groups will be at the pool at the same time. Since USAS is not required for the Stripers swim team, you can elect to go to all of the meet or just the portion you want or can or not go at all.

A swimmer must have a membership to USAS to enter meets. The cost for the 2018 registration is $69.00, which goes up a little each year.

To enter meets it is the same process as it is for YMCA meets. You must “Commit” or “Decline” each meet. Sometimes the head coach will let the swimmers have a little more say in what events they will swim at a USAS meet and this will be indicated by allowing you to select events after you “Commit” to the meet. However, if the head coach has any questions or concerns he will have a discussion with the swimmer (and parent if necessary).

USAS meets have entry fees, usually based off a per event price. Usually between $2 and $5 per event and a participation fee of a flat fee between $5-$15. These fees are charged to your YMCA Membership Account no sooner than the day after the entry deadline for the meet.

The head coach can withdraw entries from a meet without refund because of lack of commitment to practices prior to the meet. This usually happens when there are only one or two swimmers entered in the meet or session and the swimmers have not been to practices regularly. 

The head coach will talk to the parents of a swimmer they think the swimmer would benefit greatly from USAS. However, if the parent or the swimmer would like to give it a try, please contact the head coach!