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Frequently Asked Questions

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How do I register my swimmer with the Goodman Waves?
Select the "Registration" button in the top left menu bar. It is mandatory that you complete our two-step process in order to register your child. Without completing both, your child will not be officially registered.

Step 1: register here, on the Waves Team Unify site.

  • Enter parent's (guardian) information.
  • Click the "Continue" button and "Add New Member" to input the child's information. Each child is added separately.

Once registered, you’ll have access to your own private account that will allow you to sign up for meets and volunteering, and to see you child’s swim times, etc. It also allows coaches to assign swim relays.

Step 2: will redirect you to the City's account page where you must provide your information and make payment to the city.

Do I need to join the Goodman Pool in order to join the Goodman Waves Swim & Dive Team?
No, pool memberships are separate from the Goodman Waves Swim & Dive Team.

How much does it cost to join the Goodman Waves swim team?
Check out our 2017 Fees page.

Scholarships are available through our generous donors. Thanks to the Shelley Glover Foundation and The Irwin A. and Robert D. Goodman Foundation, scholarships are available for the Goodman Waves Swim Team. Please check under our Scholarship tab for more info on applying.


Are the Waves only for really good swimmers or divers?
No! The Goodman Waves Swim Team accepts kids of all levels. The only qualification to join is the ability to swim one complete length of the 25-meter pool unassisted and feel comfortable in deep water. That's all!

If my child is on the swim team, does that mean that he/she shouldn’t take swimming lessons?
No. Swimming lessons can be a great supplement to being on the team, especially for younger or newer swimmers. Check the City of Madison website for lesson information.

In what age group will my child swim or dive?
The age of your child on June 1st is the age that your child will compete at for the entire season. Even though your child may turn 11 on June 2nd, he/she will compete in the 9-10 age group for the entire season.

What distances will my child have to swim?
The distance your child will swim varies by your child’s age: 8-unders swim 25 meters (one length) of a stroke and 100 meters (four lengths) of the Individual Medley (all four strokes combined). 9-10s and 11-12s swim 50 meters of each stroke plus 100 meters of the Individual Medley. 13-14s swim 50 meters of the butterfly, 100 meters of the other three strokes, and 100 meters of the Individual Medley. 15-18s swim 100s of a stroke and a 200 Individual Medley.


What group will my swimmer be placed in?
Groups are determined by age. Feel free to discuss group placement with the coach if you should have any concerns. Coaches take placement very seriously and it’s important to swim with peer mates due to practice relays.

How many practices must my child attend during the week in order to attend a meet?  
There are no practice requirements, however, every child is strongly encouraged to attend as many practices as he/she can. Swimmers who regularly attend practice will find themselves swimming faster and feeling like part of the community. We certainly understand that swimmers have lots of fun camps and summer travel planned. The same is true of divers.

What if I’m running late to practice?
Many important announcements are given at the beginning of practice. Children arriving late not only miss these announcements but also disrupt the flow of the practice. We understand that things come up but try to be on time. Ask your coach for anything you may have missed.

If the weather is bad, do we have practice?
Practice generally happens even in light rain if the temperatures are warm. Generally, we practice even if it seems cold. The water temperature is always the same, and active swimmers stay warm during their practice time. We do not practice when there is thunder, lightning or strong storms but coaches are at the pool keeping swimmers occupied.

I need to talk with a coach regarding my child. Can I approach a coach whenever I see one on deck
The best time to speak with a coach is before or after practices in the morning. You can also email the coach to set up a time if needed.


Is there a requirement to volunteer at meets? What are the expectations?
Yes and no. While there is no requirement to volunteer at a meet, a family member is expected to volunteer if the child participates in a home meet.

Swim meets typically require about 40 volunteers to conduct. We need two timers per lane, officials, runners, announcers, scorers, and clerk of course (people who help get swimmers to the right lane at the right time--especially the young ones) plus others. Because we are a smaller team, we hope that everyone will volunteer in order to divide up the work fairly. People who know the skilled positions (officiating, scoring, announcing) may need to work every home meet.

What are some ways I can volunteer?
To learn more about volunteering, click on "Volunteer" tab on the main menu. Volunteering is fun and no experience is necessary. It’s a great way to connect to the team! Volunteers are crucial to running a swim meet. If you find that you can’t volunteer in a specified or traditional role, please let us know how you can help.

How do I volunteer?
Next to each meet, is a button for "Job Signup." Click on it to open up volunteer page.


Is a team suit required?
Kids who receive scholarships receive a complimentary team suit but must go to Simply Swimming to get fitted. Suits will be held at Simply Swimming and handed out by a team manager at the start of the season. 

Families who pay to join swim & dive team are not required to purchase a team suit, however, w
e strongly encourage you to purchase our team suits. We chose a team suit that is not only purple, our team color, but one that is both affordable and durable. The durability of the suit allows kids to wear them not only to meets but to practice making it an affordable choice. The team suit is the same for both swim and dive team.

Where do I get my child’s team swimsuit?

Our team vendor is Simply Swimming. Our website has information about how, where, and when to order the suit and other apparel. It’s important to get the proper fitting. Sample suits are available at Simply Swimming to try on prior to ordering.

Where do I get a team t-shirt for my child?
All Goodman Waves swimmers receive a complimentary team t-shirt. T-shirts are distributed by parent volunteers at the beginning of the season. Latex team caps are also included in your registration.

How else can I show my team pride?
In addition, to our team suit, we pick out apparel that is sold through Simply Swimming for both kids and parents to purchase. Check out our "Team Apparel" for this year's apparel selections. You are under no obligation to purchase team apparel. 


How do I sign up for meets?
All meet sign up is done on the team website.

  • Click on the Button on the front page that says "MEET SIGN UP". This will take you to a list of meets available for sign up.
  • Click on the button for each that says "sign up" and you will be taken to a page which asks you to declare whether you will be swimming in this meet or not.
  • You will select two individual events by clicking in the box in front of the event you wish to swim.
  • The comments box is to let your coach know if you will not be able to swim relays.


Email us at

What should my child sign up to swim in a meet?
Your swimmer is allowed to swim two individual events and two relays at a meet. You and your child may pick the individual events you would like to swim. Your swimmer likely has strokes that they like to swim, and they are free to swim that event at every meet if they choose. However, it is strongly encouraged that swimmers try all of the different events offered for their age group over the course of the season. Swimmers are learning and improving their skills all summer long and swimming new events gives them a chance to see their improvements.

Is my swimmer required to swim the relays?
Swimmers are strongly encouraged to participate in relays so that all swimmers have an opportunity to participate. Relays can be the most exciting and best part of swimming—for both swimmers and parents. If your team is depending on your swimmer to be on a relay, remember that three other swimmers and their families are involved. Please communicate with your coach if you are unable to participate.

How are relays decided?
Swimmers are encouraged to swim all events available to them and that includes relays. For dual meets, the coaches will do their best to put every swimmer in at least one relay. The number of swimmers signed up for each meet also determines participation.

My child swims in the 9-10 age group, but has been put on an 11-12 relay. Why is this?
After relays are determined, there may be swimmers left in that age group, but not enough to make a complete relay in that age group. If there are enough swimmers over two age groups to make a relay team, the relay team can compete at the age group of the oldest swimmer(s) on that relay. All-City rules state that these swimmers may join in an older age group relay that has an empty spot. This is called swimming up. Younger swimmers may legally join older relays, but older swimmers cannot join younger relays. This rule allows for more kids to participate in relays and practice more racing.

I missed the sign-up deadline! Can my child still swim in the meet?
For home meets, the answer is generally yes. However, for away meets, the coaches have less latitude to add late entries once our entries have been sent to another hosting pool. If you miss an entry deadline, contact the coach as soon as possible.

IMPORTANT TO NOTE: It is likely that your swimmer may not be put on a relay if relays have already been entered into the computer. It is also possible that your child may be put on a slower relay than they might otherwise qualify for. This would happen if there were extra swimmers in an age group leftover after the first relay has been made, and your late entry means there are now enough swimmers to form a second relay. Finally, if your entry comes in after the meet program has been made, then your swimmer will only be able to swim events in which there is an empty lane, meaning that if every heat of freestyle is full, they will not be able to swim freestyle and will have to pick another event.


What should I do if I’m going to be late to the swim meet?

Call the Head Coach at (608) [Contact info to come]. If your child is running late or will miss the swim meet on Saturday after signing up to compete, is it very important that you let your coach know you are unable to attend ASAP.

It is very important that swimmers arrive on time to swim meets. Your swimmer needs time to get warmed up prior to the meet. Our team have a set time for warm-ups in the pool. During warm-ups coaches check-in with all of their swimmers and make sure everyone is there for relays. If a swimmer is not in the water for warm-ups, a coach will begin looking for a replacement for that swimmer.

It is the policy of the Goodman coaching staff that, if a swimmer is not in the water on time for warm-ups, he/she may be removed from any and all relays for that meet. These problems can be avoided if the coach is notified prior to the practice/meet when they know they will be late. Your communication is greatly appreciated by the coaches.

My child is not swimming until later in the meet; does he/she have to be there for warm-ups?

Warm-ups are not optional! It is important that your child is at the meet from the very beginning so that he/she can participate in cheers and can get a feel for the water before swimming. Swimmers who do not attend warm-ups may be scratched from relays.

What if it’s raining on the morning of the meet?
In the case of potentially threatening weather on the day of a meet, always assume we will have a meet unless you hear otherwise. Every effort is made to hold a meet as make-ups are not possible. Because of this, meets may have a delayed start time or have some events scratched. If you decided to keep your swimmer home, please contact the coach as soon as possible to make other arrangements for relays. We will do our best to email participants prior to any delay or cancellation.

What should I bring to a swim meet?
Please wear your team suit and cap as well as any apparel you have. Everyone with long hair must wear a cap. Sweats, parkas and large towels are good to have at a meet when the weather turns cool (and it will). Swimmers can bring a fleece blanket or sleeping bag to the meets for staying warm and resting between events. A shade awning or tent can be handy to get out of the sun.

What’s with the swim meet themes? Are the kids supposed to dress up, too?
For each meet, swim coaches come up with a fun dress up theme from zoo animals to favorite rock stars. Coaches dress up for swim meets and we encourage swimmers to participate in dressing up as way to show team spirit, but it is not a requirement.

What is a "Heat Sheet" and how do I use It?
A heat sheet is a listing of all of the races scheduled for a swim meet. It is the road map that is used to make sure that our swimmers are in the right place at the right time and that the correct time is connected with the correct swimmer at the end of the race.

What is the best way for my child to remember what he/she is swimming?
Use a pen or marker (Sharpie works best) to write your child’s event number, heat and lane on their hand. This information can be found in the heat sheet.

What is clerk of course?
Clerk of Course is the area where young swimmers check in before their events and volunteers there help get the swimmers organized and to the blocks in time for their events. This helps keep young, nervous swimmers and parents calm and helps the meet flow quickly and smoothly.

When should my child report to the Clerk of Course?
As dual meets move along quickly, your child should report to the Clerk of Course at least two events prior to the event he/she is swimming. Usually an announcer will announce what events are being staged. Listen carefully.

I noticed some pools are a "yards" pool and a "meters" pool. What’s the difference?
The Goodman Pool is 25 meters long as are most of our All-City League pools. A few pools are 25 yards long (Nakoma, Hawks, Shorewood). Since a yards pool is shorter than a meters pool, times in a yards pool will be faster because the distance raced is shorter. To compensate for this, a conversion factor is used to compare times. The computer automatically does this for every meet. The computer takes all your swimmer's times, converts them, and picks the best time to enter your swimmer in the meet with.

What does DQ mean?
DQ stands for "disqualification." At swim meets, stroke-and-turn judges (also called officials) observe the swimmers to ensure that the starts, strokes, turns, and finishes are performed according to the rules. If a judge sees a violation of the rules, she will raise her arm and then fill out a DQ slip. A swimmer who DQs will not get an official time or a place ribbon for that event.

There are two basic reasons for a DQ (1) To keep a swimmer from gaining an unfair advantage over the other swimmers, and (2) To help the swimmer learn what he/she is doing wrong so the mistake can be corrected.

Please don't be concerned about DQs; all swimmers DQ at some point! The first few times a child swims butterfly or breaststroke, there will be DQs. The youngest kids often DQ in backstroke (by turning onto their tummies at the last second). It's hard to DQ in freestyle, but it can be done. Everyone DQs. No one points and laughs at the child who DQs. Please do not approach or question a judge or a referee regarding a DQ; direct all questions to your child's coach after the meet.

What are the officials watching for?
There are rules that govern the swimming competition in order to ensure a safe and fair meet for all swimmers. The All-City league uses the guidelines established by USA Swimming, the body that governs competitive swimming in the United States. Officials take special training and do apprenticeships to learn how to judge fairly. Each stroke has its own set of rules for what is permitted and what is not permitted. Most rules are intended to make sure no swimmer gets an unfair advantage over another swimmer. The officials job is to observe the swimmers as they race and report swimmers who violate those rules, so that everyone can be assured the competition is fair.

We have another event to go to on Saturday. Can my child just swim part of the meet?
While we encourage swimmers to stay for the entire meet, a swimmer may swim just part of the meet. In order for the meet to count, the swimmer must swim 1 individual event. The order of the events is always the same. If a swimmer is only available for the first hour or so of a meet, they may chose to swim an event(s) that takes place near the beginning of the meet only. PLEASE let your coach know in the comment section of the online sign up if you will not be able to stay for the relays that occur at the end of the meet.

How long do swim meets last?
Swim meets usually run around 3.5 hours - smaller ones are a bit shorter, bigger ones run a bit longer. Swimmers are encouraged to stay for the entire meet, as they may be needed for other relays. If you need to leave, please get permission from your coach before leaving.

Looking for how a Swim Meet works?

Check out our Swim Meet 101 to get started.



What is the All-City Meet and who is it for?
The All-City Meet is the Championship meet at the end of the season for the Madison All-City Swim and Dive League. This three day outdoor meet of nearly 2000 swimmers is one of the largest in the country! Truly it is the best place to be at the end of the season!

The meet is for every swimmer participating in the summer league regardless of their skill level. Because all swimmers from all pools are invited to participate, it is a much bigger meet than a dual meet. The events on the first two days of the meet are divided by age group, so a swimmer will only participate on one of those days. The top 16-18 swimmers in each event will go on to compete in the finals on the third day. In addition to individual finals, the third day is also reserved for relays for each age group.

How many meets must my child swim in order to be eligible for the All-City Meet?
Swimmers must swim at least one event in at least three All-City Conference dual meets in order to be eligible for the All-City Meet.



When is the Swim Team End-of-Season Picnic?
Our Swim Team Picnic will be held the Sunday following the All-City Swim Meet at the Goodman Pool.



Where’s the best place to get more information about the Goodman Waves Swim Team?

You’re already here! Our website is the best place to find what you need.

Contact us: