Time Standards

What Are Time Standards and How Do They Work?

One of the most challenging things for parents of new swimmers can be to understand the time standards for competition. There previously were standards known as A, B, C, and Junior Olympic (JO). In the summer of 2019, San Diego Imperial decided to start using the USA Swimming timing standards and uses the BB time standards for meets. USA Swimming time standards range from B to AAAA. 2021-2024 USA Swimming Time Standards


Swimmers who have never done an event and do not have a time (NT) are considered a C swimmer, or slower than B. Once a swimmer achieves a BB time standard, they qualify for any meet marked as BB Minimum.


Junior Olympic time standards are separate from the A/B time standards and are usually faster. These time standards are used to qualify swimmers for JO’s, which are held in February at the end of short course season, and July, at the end of long course season. There are two sets of time standards for the JO meets, as they are held in two different courses. The short course time standards are for all events done in a short course yards pool (25 yards long). The long course time standards are for all events held in a long course meters pool (50 meters long, or Olympic length). You cannot use a short course yards time to qualify for a long course meter event! 2020 Junior Olympic Time Standards



For additional information on time standards, check out the San Diego Imperial Swimming website.