Group Placement

Developmental / Platinum Group

Swimmers need a basic understanding of freestyle and backstroke and the components of breaststroke and butterfly. These athletes will focus on fine tuning butterfly and breaststroke, drills, equipment, and turns. They will learn what swim team is all about and begin to learn the discipline to become a bronze level swimmer. Swimmers must be able to swim 50 meters of freestyle and backstroke plus 25 meters of breaststroke and butterfly. Coaches will be in and out of the water with this group.

1. Focus is on basic techniques as swimmers work on the fundamentals of each stroke through kicking, stroke drills, and developing increased endurance.

2. This group may or may not participate in the USA Swimming meets instead an intra-squad meet or fun meet with other developmental groups is recommended.

3. Practice equipment includes kickboards, noodle pieces (a cut up noodle to assist in keeping arms out front for freestyle and to place between the chin and chest to emphasize good head position).

4. Typically practice will be held in the Indoor Leisure pool.

5. Practice will be approximately 45 minutes two times per week.


Bronze Group

Swimmers have a basic understanding of swimming skills. Refinement and continued development of these skills are the main objective of this group. The points of emphasis are swimming satisfaction, fun, stroke technique and beginning competition. Swimmers must be able to swim a minimum of 300 meters of freestyle and a 100 meter individual medley. The Breaststroke and Butterfly must be a legal USA Swimming level stroke.

1. The focus is almost entirely on teaching fundamentals and developing basic motor learning skills, balance, stability and coordination in the water.

2. It is important to teach and develop correct technique in order to make swimming fun and enjoyable. The most significant responsibility for coaches of Bronze swimmers is teaching young people to love the sport.

3. Emphasis is on the development of correct technique fundamentals and developing a strong kick, with efficiency being the top priority. This concept is in the best interest of the swimmer’s long term success. At this level, there is great merit in competition based on skill development

4. Promotion and development of each of the four strokes. Swimmers are not recommended to specialize in practice or in meets.

5. Heavy emphasis on kicking! Coaches make kicking a high percentage of the conditioning work done at the Bronze levels.

6. At every level, but particularly the Bronze level, we take a long-term approach to swimmer development. Once swimmers begin in our program, we want them to have the preparation and skills they will need to successfully compete and make swimming a lifetime activity.

7. Practice equipment includes but is not limited to kickboards, fins, pull buoys, and swim caps.

8. Swimmers at this level are encouraged to enter and compete in USA Swimming competitions. They should also be wearing the Lifetime swim cap during practices and competitions.

9.  Swimmers are introduced to the pace clock and begin leaving on arranged times.

10. Practices will be approximately 60 minutes and are offered 5 days per week.  Bronze swimmers are expected to attend at least three practices per week.


Silver Groups

Swimmers are able to swim all four strokes legally and maintain good technique on low intensity interval work. This phase is a transitional level where the emphasis begins to change from primarily teaching to a relatively equal balance of technique work and physiological development. Swimmers also have a moderate level of competitive swimming experience. Dry land training, endurance, conditioning, stroke refinement, race strategy, competitive skills, goal setting and an understanding of time standards are emphasized.

1. Practice sessions are still centered on teaching fundamentals as a strong foundation in all strokes.

2. Swimmers are encouraged to attend 4 practices offered each week.

3. Low intensity aerobic conditioning is emphasized and athletes begin to do more training volume on a weekly basis. It is important that the fundamental skills developed in earlier levels not be compromised as swimmers begin to swim farther in practice.  Increased use of the pace clock.

4. Focus on preparation for the 200 IM and 200/500 freestyle events. Even if swimmers show promise in specific events, swimmers develop all strokes and will not be allowed to specialize at this level.

5. Continued priority on developing a strong kick for all four strokes.

6. Although the overall volume of training expected of swimmers increases during this phase of the program, coaches are charged with being creative and making the experience interesting and challenging.

7. Practice equipment includes kickboards, pull buoys, swim fins, paddles and swim caps.

8. Practice will be 60 minutes.  Practices are offered five times per week.  Swimmers are expected at four practices per week.



Gold 1 Group

Swimmers have a high level of competitive swimming experience. This group is designed to transition swimmers from age group swimming to senior swimming through an increase in volume and intensity of training. The focus is to improve overall fitness and, refine stroke skills by training in a variety of energy systems

1. Swimmers are encouraged to consistently attend five to six practices per week, depending on the age of the swimmer. Consistent practice attendance is crucial for both swimming improvement and injury prevention.

2. Gold swimmers should display a high level of commitment, work ethic, personal responsibility and sportsmanship.

3. Training volume to be completed each week begins to be an important consideration.

4. Build a solid foundation for continued improvement by emphasizing an aerobic base and IM training. Continue to work on all strokes and all distances in both practice and meets.

5. Aerobic base conditioning is the highest priority, athletes begin to do more race pace work.

6. Practice equipment includes kickboards, fins, pull buoy, paddles and a swim cap.

7. Practice will be approximately 75-90 minutes five to six times per week.


Gold 2 Group

Swimmers at the “Senior” level are the most developed athletes on the team. These swimmers are preparing for future regional and national level meets. These swimmers are expected to dedicate a greater deal of time in the pool and to dryland work.

1. Swimmers are expected to attend all workouts through the week including morning workouts and dryland sessions.

2. Seniors must be year round swimmers dedicated to improvement, high goals and hard work.

3. Practice equipment includes kickboards, fins, pull buoys, paddles, a snorkel, and a sponge trainer,

4. Dryland training becomes more rigorous and includes weight training.

5. Practice times will be approximately 120-180 minutes (with dryland) eight to nine times per week

Group placements are and will be solely at the discretion of the Life Time Coaching Staff. Coaches will evaluate swimmers based on the factors listed above which are represented by practice and meet performance throughout the year.

Life Time swimmers must show which groups they belong in and which groups meet their needs not by words, but by their actions in practice and meets.

For questions regarding group placement, please contact the head site coach of your club:

North Austin: Justin Roberson at

South Austin: Lucas Alves at

San Antonio 281: Shaun C. Anderson at

San Antonio NW at The Rim: Bill Thomas at