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Group Levels

MADISON AQUATIC CLUB GROUP LEVELS AND TRAINING PROGRESSION

 

Short Course Season - Late August - Early March

FALL SESSION: late Aug-mid Nov ~ WINTER SESSION:  mid Nov-end of Feb/early Mar

Long Course Season - Early March - Early August

SPRING SESSION: early Mar-mid Jun ~ SUMMER SESSION: mid Jun-late Jul/early Aug

 

At the Madison Aquatic Club, we train our swimmers to prepare for a long and healthy swim career striving for the highest levels of competition.   We do this by creating a training progression that sufficiently challenges swimmers throughout their career.  Setting and holding swimmers accountable from the time they start with us through their senior swimming years keeps them engaged and challenged.  In the competitive groups, our young swimmers learn to love to swim and to swim well.  As the swimmer progresses through the program and up through the performance groups, they will be sufficiently challenged to keep growing season-to-season and year-to-year through the proper training progression.

We have each of our swim groups set-up to help swimmers grow and progress to the next.  Without the skills learned in the previous group they will not be ready for the next group.  This is why it's not important which group they are in today but that they learn the skills from that group and use them to progress and become better and ready for tomorrow.  Group placement is in the best interest of the swimmer for their progress in the sport of swimming and with us.  

Group placement is at coaches’ discretion and is based on many factors including their ability, experience and their willingness to meet the commitment expected from that level. MAC coaches do not purely base groups around ages or what is in the short-term best interest of the swimmer but instead on what the swimmer needs in order to learn, grow, and thrive on a long-term timeline.  Questions regarding your child's level should be directed toward his/her coach.

 

COMPETITIVE PROGRAM

White group (12&Under Foundations) swimmers learn the fundamentals of the four competitive swimming strokes.  At MAC all of our age-group swimmers are "IMers" meaning that while a swimmer may have strokes that are considered better or not as good as their others at one point or another, we work to make all of our age-group swimmers well rounded in all areas of swim.  We take it one length at a time to make sure that swimmers understand and can master each step in the process before moving onto the next.  Besides the four competitive strokes, the fundamentals of swim include: starts, turns, swim etiquette, our main drills we use at MAC, and listening to and working with the coaches.  Once they understand and can demonstrate the fundamentals of each of the strokes they are either ready for the Red group or the Blue group, depending on where they are at in their development.

Red group (Advanced 10&Unders) swimmers advance their understanding of the fundamentals of all four of the strokes, starts, turns, learning the drills that we use across all of our groups as well as the fundamentals of swim sets including using intervals and pace clocks.  Once they understand and can demonstrate these concepts consistently they are ready for the Capitals group.

Blue group (Intermediate 12&Unders) swimmers advance their understanding of the fundamentals of all four of the strokes, starts, turns, learning the drills that we use across all of our groups as well as the fundamentals of swim sets including using intervals and pace clocks.  Once they understand and can demonstrate these concepts consistently they are ready for the Capitals group.

Capitals (Advanced 12&Unders) swimmers continue skills and fitness adaptations and now start focusing on higher level concepts such as race strategy.  This in addition to preparing for our Performance program.  Once swimmers reach 13 years of age and are prepared they are either offered placement into the Performance program or not yet ready and offered a spot in the Senior-Black group.  In both the Performance and the Black group experiences swimmers will be challenged to set their goals high and to progress towards them.

Senior - Black is for 13 and over swimmers coming up from our age group program or those new to MAC.  Here swimmers will start to specialize in stroke work and will focus on two things: 1) Further their aerobic base and 2) stroke and race specific specialization.  Practices are generally five times a week at 1.5 hours in-water and .25 hour dryland per practice.  Competitions are generally 1-2 meets per month with 1-2 travel meets per season.  Swimmers may be invited to Performance 2 once they have advanced, and are ready to commit, to Performance 2 standards.

 

PERFORMANCE PROGRAM

Silver is set-up for 13-18 year old swimmers.  These swimmers are advanced in all four competitive strokes, starts, and turns and are ready to commit to the rigorous year-round training regimen and standards of the group.  Here swimmers will specialize in stroke work and will focus on two things: 1) Further their aerobic base and 2) stroke and race specific specialization.  Practices are generally six times a week at 2 hours in-water and 1 hour dryland per practice.  Competitions are generally 1-2 meets per month with 1-2 travel meets per season.  Swimmers may be invited to Performance 1 when they are mentally and physically ready for further training.

Gold is the peak performance group within the MAC Training Progression where you will find the swimmers training in preparation for nationals, college swimming, and international competition.  The Performance 1 group is set-up for 13 and over swimmers.  These swimmers are advanced in all four competitive strokes, starts, and turns and are ready to commit to the rigorous year-round training regimen and standards of the group.  Here swimmers will specialize in stroke work and will focus on two things: 1) stroke and race specific specialization and 2) striving for their full potential as a student-athlete.    Practices are generally six times a week at 2 hours in-water and 1 hour dryland per practice.  Competitions are generally 1-2 meets per month with several travel meets per season.