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Swim Team Terminology

Swim Team Terminology

  • All Star Relays - an all league meet attended by the relay teams which establish the 18 best performances league-wide at the divisional relay carnivals
  • Announcer - the person with the microphone who speaks clearly and communicates information with personality
  • Backstroke. Like the freestyle, any stroke and kick are acceptable, as long as you stay on your back. Eventually, backstrokers learn to stay off the lane lines, use the overhead backstroke flags and lane line markings to know where they are, and count strokes from the flags to the wall. Backstroke starts are different from other starts, because the swimmer is in the water with feet planted against the wall. In addition, the backstroker may use "legs" at the start; that is, he or she may grasp the legs of another swimmer who stands on the pool deck to provide leverage at the start. "Legs" must be grabbed below the knee. A teammate usually provides “legs;” persons serving in an official capacity (timers or coaches) may not serve as "legs." If the backstroker swims 50 meters, he or she will learn the flip turn. This is the exception to staying on one's back during this event. Note: a flip turn is not required.
  • Breaststroke. The breaststroke has two parts: the kick and the arm pull. The pull and its recovery must both be under the breast and cannot extend further back than the waist area. The kick is a "frog" kick and the toes must be pointed outward during the propulsive part of the kick. The arm pull and kick must be in an alternating sequence, and the elbows must stay below the water except for touching the wall at the finish. Breaststroke turns and finishes require a simultaneous two-hand touch.
  • Butterfly. The butterfly also has two parts: the kick and the arm pull. The arm pull must be an over- the-water recovery (elbows breaking the surface of the water) with the arms moving simultaneously. The kick is a dolphin kick, with both legs moving together. Unlike breaststroke, there is no requirement to alternate the kick and the pull. Turns and finishes require a simultaneous two-hand touch at the wall.
  • Chief Timer - the multi-tasking person in charge of the timers, who reminds timers of the rules, collects the time cards and ensures that all swim times are accurate, and runs two extra stopwatches
  • Clerk of Course - the person that organizes swimmers by age and event right before they swim.
  • Concession Workers - grillers, servers, and sales people of food and drinks
  • Concessions - food and drinks for sale
  • Divisional Relays - the meet containing all relay events and attended by all pools within the division
  • Divisionals – Swim - the meet in which the top two in each event from each pool within the division compete (specific rules apply such as a swimmer cannot swim more than two events)
  • DQ - a disqualification is when a swimmer does not swim a legal stroke
  • Dryland - Dryland training is any exercise performed outside of the pool to improve swimming skills.  Some exercises include working the core, plyometrics, flexibility exercises and also games that involve running/jumping, etc.
  • Folder in the Box - the folders in the file box at the used for all swim/dive communications
  • Freestyle. The freestyle is defined as any means of swimming the length of the pool. Any stroke and kick are acceptable, although the “front crawl” is nearly always used. There are a few “dont’s” associated with this stroke, including: 1. You cannot walk on the bottom of the pool or pull yourself along using the lane lines.
    2. In a 50 meter race (two pool lengths), you must touch the wall at the 25 meter end before touching the wall at the 50 meter end Note: a flip turn is not required.
  • IM - an individual medley is a 100 meter race in which the competitor swims one lap of each stroke in the order of butterfly, backstroke, breaststroke, and freestyle
  • Individual All Stars – Swim - the final swim meet of the season attended by the fastest 18 swimmers league-wide in each event using times posted at Divisionals
  • Individual medley (IM). In this event, the swimmer swims each of the four strokes in the following sequence: butterfly, backstroke, breaststroke, and freestyle. In the NVSL, the IM is 100 meters (25 meters (one pool length) of each stroke). Every turn is a stroke change, and stroke finish rules apply. This means the backstroke flip turn in an IM event is illegal.
  • Marshal - the “policeman” or "policewoman" at a meet.  Should be on deck during warm-ups.
  • Mini Meet - An invitational meet for swimmers 10 years and younger from several pools. Founded by Woodley pool in 1996 and hosted by us. A huge fundraiser for our swim/dive team and pool in general. 
  • Mixed Age Relay - a race in which four competitors swim an equal distance; competitors must swim in the order of 11-12 swimmer, 10 and under swimmer, 13-14 swimmer, and 15-18 swimmer
  • Referee – Swim - the person in charge of the meet, who runs the meets, who approves/disapproves all judging calls, and ensures the rules and regulations are followed
  • Relay - a race in which four competitors swim an equal distance
  • Relays. There are two kinds of relays, the freestyle relay and the medley relay. Both require a team of four swimmers, with each swimmer swimming one quarter of the total distance. In the freestyle relay, each swimmer swims freestyle. In the medley relay, the stroke sequence is: backstroke, breaststroke, butterfly, and freestyle. In all relays, each swimmer must wait until the previous swimmer touches the wall prior to take off. Running starts or pushes from teammates are not allowed (you also can’t reenter the water after your leg is complete).
  • Scratch - to withdraw a competitor from an event
  • Set Up - prior to a meet, moving all tables, chairs, umbrellas, and tents to the needed locations, hanging up the backstroke flags, placing the lane lines in the pool, placing the blocks for the filters in the pool, readying concessions for sales
  • Stroke and Turn Judge - the unbiased person who studies the swimmer and determines if the stroke is being executed legally or not and if necessary, disqualifies that swimmer.
  • Swim Team Representatives - Individuals that attempt to organize and lead the summer swim or dive team, communicate with the team members, plan the meet sheets, print the time cards, meet with the other pools on a weekly or more basis, pray for no scratches, fill meet positions, work with the coaches, order swim caps, ribbons, t-shirts, receive and listen to feedback, and depend heavily on the support and participation of every individual swimmer and family
  • Swimming Up - swimming in an age group older than one’s own
  • Table Workers – Swim - the individuals who sort the time cards, score the results, enter the results into the computer, and manage the award ribbons
  • Take Down - after a meet, moving all tables, chairs, umbrellas, and tents to their original positions, removing and storing the backstroke flags, removing and storing the lane lines, removing and storing the blocks, putting away leftover food and drinks, and cleaning up the concessions area
  • Teamunify: web based management platform we use to help organize our team.
  • Time Trials - a practice meet held on a Saturday morning prior to all other meets in which swimmers race as many events (strokes) as they can legally swim in order to obtain a baseline time at the start of the season; these times will be used to determine the first Saturday “A” meet entries
  • Timers - the three persons in each lane with the stopwatches that start their watches when the strobe light on the starter system flashes and end their watches when the swimmer touches the wall;  all three times are then recorded
  • Todd Potts IM Carnival - an invitational swim meet in which all interested swimmers that can swim each of the four strokes in a legal IM participate.