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FAQ About Meets

Frequently Asked Questions About Swim Meets

What does my child have to do to compete?

Your child will need to be registered with USA Swimming if they are planning to compete in meets (with the exception of districts and state which are Rec & Parks meets).  You will find registration forms in the black box near the double windows at the pool.  Once you have completed your registration, turn it in to the black box in the same area at the pool.  Our USA Swimming coordinator will process your registration and get your registration cards to you ASAP. 

What if my child does not want to compete?

We understand that children swim for reasons other than competition.  While it is highly encouraged, your child does not have to compete.  Whether your child competes or not, you will still need to provide a copy of your child's birth certificate to Coach John.  This is a city requirement for all sports.

What things should my child bring to a swim meet?

 You will want to make sure your child has their competition suit, goggles, and cap AND a spare set.  Too often, goggles and swim caps will break during competition.  It’s always better to be safe than sorry.  A full meet checklist is available under the "Meets" tab.

How long do swim meets last?

Plan for a swim meet to last 4+ hours.  Most meets are set up with a morning session and an afternoon session.  Your child will be grouped into a session based on their age.  Your child will spend a great deal of time cheering their teammates on and waiting to race, so you will want to bring things to keep them occupied. 

When should I arrive at the meet?

Coach John will let you know our scheduled warm-up time the week of the meet.  You will want to arrive at least 20 – 30 minutes prior to warm-ups.  This will give your swimmer an opportunity to get ready and it will give you time to find a place to sit.  You will need to purchase a heat sheet that will tell you what events your child is swimming.  Once your swimmer is ready, they will need to check in with Coach John.  It is very important to check in with Coach as he decides who swims in the relays once everyone is checked in.

How will I know which race is my child’s?

You will find your child’s event numbers in the heat sheet which will be available for purchase.  All events have an event number (e.g. Event #7, Girls 8 & Under - 25 Yard Freestyle). Many swimmers write their event numbers on their leg or arm with a Sharpie. Pay attention to the announcer as he/she announces what event is in the water or what event is coming up. If your child is 12 & under, they are often sent to the “bull pen”.  This area of chairs or benches is set up near the starting blocks.  Your child will go to that area where a volunteer will make sure they make their race.  Parents are usually not permitted in the area behind the blocks.  You will want to send your child to the bull pen area two events prior to their event (e.g. Event 4 Heat 3 is in the water and your child is Event 6 Heat 1).   A volunteer will place your child in the correct order for their swim.  Make sure you remind your child of the event/heat and the stroke/distance they will be swimming.  Feel free to ask any parent or older swimmer if you have questions or concerns.

What do I do after the race?

Talk to Coach John!  Coach is there to tell your child how well they did and to give them pointers on how they can improve their times.  Find a towel and get dry and warm.  Go back to the team area and relax.  Drink plenty of fluids and munch on a healthy snack.  Your child will need lots of energy for their next race.