Welcome to the world of swimming and being a swim parent. The first time the swimmer wants to compete in a meet can be over-whelming at times. Don't worry, we have all gone through it. Below are some items that may make the experience somewhat easier.
These are held occasionally throughout the year but more so in the summer. These meets are generally geared for the less experienced swimmer. In short, you will show up at the pool at the appointed place and time, sign the swimmer up for the event, then swim. While the swimmer does need to have a valid USA Swimming ID, this is not an observed or sanctioned meet. There are no disqualifications and everyone gets a ribbon. These are fun and a good way for the novice swimmer to learn about meet swimming.
USA Swimming/LSC Meets:
These are the most common meets in the San Diego - Imperial LSC. There is an attached file for you to look at that has an overall primer on how to prepare for a meet. These tend to be longer than the the other two meets you will be involved with. If you have any questions, many of the parents have been through this before and are probably the best source of information and help. The coaches can also assist with the process.
LSC Meet Handbook
Glossary of Swimming Terms - Taken from the USA Swimming website
Meet Entry Form - PDf Form - Used very infrequently
These meets are a very good opportunity for more novice swimmers. The League meets tend to be monthly, one-day meets with a two-day championship meet at the end of each swim season. The more experienced swimmers are welcome to attend based on your coach's recommendation.
YMCA Meet Handbook