Criteria for Swimmer Advancement

Ashwaubenon Swim Club offers training and practice groups for swimmers of all ages and ability levels. We offer technique based training that become more and more challenging as a swimmer advances training groups and swims faster and further.  It is the goal of ASC coaches to develop the career swimmer over the long term.

Each swimmer is assigned a specific group level at the beginning of the season based on age appropriate and skill grouping.  The swimmer’s group level dictates their available practice times.  Swimmers can advance at various points in the season by meeting specified test set requirements and consistently exhibiting the physical/mental/emotional/leadership preparedness for more advanced training/intervals and more extensive commitment/group dynamics at practices and meets throughout the season.  Generally, we recommend swimmers for advancing levels in January, April, and September, although we do allow some advancement at other times in special cases. Test sets and evaluation criteria are used by coaches as a means of assessing swimmer improvement and possible advancement in training groups. 

Swimmer levels are solely the coaching staff's determination and are subject to the discretion of the head coach in deciding what is best for each swimmer, group, and the team as a whole.  These are some of the most important decisions a coach can make, and they work to ensure the success of each athlete and group in the program. When considering if a swimmer is ready to advance to another group, we ask ourselves if that swimmer:

1.  Can successfully keep pace with the intervals and lane pace demands of the new group, and

2.  Will this new group be a positive experience for that swimmer.

Advancements are always a new challenge and a swimmer new to an advanced group would need to be ready for that challenge.  We base these decisions using our knowledge, experience and understanding of what is best for your athlete as a swimmer and for their teammates in either training group.

Swimmer performance in training must consistently reflect the focus and demands of a workout level or swimmers will not be moved up and/or may be moved back down to the lower level. If you have any questions about your swimmer’s level, or their readiness to advance to the next level, please ask Coach Dave or Coach Katie.


Entrance Evaluation Criteria for Beginning at ASC

  • Swim 6x25 yards freestyle comfortably and consecutively on 10 seconds rest, keeping face in water, side breathing, and without stopping
  • Swim 6x25 yards backstroke comfortably and consecutively on 10 seconds rest and without stopping
  • Perform 25's streamline kick on back and belly holding streamline body position throughout and without stopping
  • Kick 50 yards flutter kick with a kickboard in 1:40 or faster
  • Deep water safe
  • Excellent focus and listening skills while in a group, positive willingness to try all skills.
  • Those who have prior experience on swim teams will be assigned a training group that is appropriate to their ability level.

Criteria To Be Eligible For Consideration to Move From Junior Jaguars to White

Habits we reinforce throughout all levels of the team

  • Ready with all gear at practice
  • Puts equipment away at end of practice
  • Behaves properly in locker room and other unsupervised areas
  • Immediate compliance to coach commands
  • Demonstrates ability to swim sets with purpose and minimal supervision
  • Understands pace clock and makes all assigned send off intervals
  • Listens and follows instructions without chronic need to re-explain instructions
  • Cheers and encourages teammates and knows the names of teammates in group
  • Competes in local and developmental competitions and talks to coach before and after races
  • Shows positive group leadership skills; leads lanes and helps guide lane management
  • Knows best times in two events

Test Sets are designed to assess improvement and to consider when a swimmer should be considered for the next level group.  The coaching staff keeps records of what each swimmer's strengths and weaknesses are.  We will assess abilities in kicking, swimming each of the four competitive strokes, starts and turns and and a swimmers ability to train in various ways on an interval.  

​​Criteria To Be Eligible For Consideration to Move From White to Green

Good training habits should be the expectation of a swimmer currently at the green group level.  As swimmers learn leadership skills, they advance from learning to doing properly to becoming a good example of how to do these habits correctly.  A higher commitment level is also demanded in advancement to the green level, as progress occurs with consistency in training.   We like to see a commitment of 3-4 practices each week in this level.

Test sets continue to assess improvement and the likeliness a swimmer will be successful in the lane pace demands of the next level group while swimming with proper technique.  There is also a performance standard that can be achieved in practices or meets for selected events that also indicate readiness to advance to the next level.


Criteria To Be Eligible For Consideration to Move From Green or MSJ to Gold

--Must be Middle School Age or Older to enter the Gold Level--

Additional Habits:

  • Exhibits respectful, selfless and sportsmanlike behavior everywhere
  • Swim sets with minimal supervision, holding proper interval and set count
  • Understands and makes all assigned send off intervals and can use clock to calculate repeats
  • Knows times and stroke counts on sets requiring time or count
  • Motivates, Challenges, Cheers, and Knows names of all teammates
  • Attends the recommended swim meets for their level and is on time to warmups, talks to coach before and after races
  • Swimmer competes in all events offered in his/her age group and knows best times


  • Begins learning about nutritional requirements of training and competition
  • Begins understanding how to utilize split information in training
  • Begins understanding race strategy for different events
  • Has a beginning understanding of effective goal setting

Test Sets now include performance standards that include distance events, competence in each stroke raced in a sanctioned meet and a faster send off standard one must be able to consistently do without sitting out to rest.  Race paces should be known and swum by the swimmer in practice.  Although a swimmer may still have a "weak stroke" that swimmer is able to keep up with a higher demand of training.

Criteria To Be Eligible For Consideration to Move From Green or Gold to Senior

Additional Habits, not just able to lead by example but also has earned the role of leadership by voice.

  • Understands the relationship of heart rate, pace and effort, requiring no supervision in training
  • Has mastered pace clock use to include knowing times, repeat numbers and patterns
  • Listens and helps teammates follow instructions when instructions were not understood
  • Knows times and stroke counts on sets requiring time or count
  • Through actions earns the right to lead by voice, and helps mentor less experienced teammates
  • Demonstrates ability to balance school, social, swimming and family
  • Actively influences teammates/peers in a positive manner


  • Has general knowledge of energy systems and how they are used in training
  • Understands nutritional requirements of training and competition
  • Understands the importance of stroke counts for effective swimming through race and practice
  • Understands that training seasons are designed for peak performance at the highest level of competition at the end of the season. Understands improvement will not happen at every competition as a result.
  • Understands and utilizes effective goal setting principles

Test Sets, performance standards and commitment are high in this level.  Many are state championship level swimmers in this group.  Practice attendance is at least 4-5 per week most weeks or at least 75% of all offered practices throughout a season.  Swimmers must be able to keep pace with a high performance group and this requires a high commitment to training.