Norfolk Hammerheads Group Structure
Members of this squad will train to compete with success at the National, Junior and International level. The head coach will identify those swimmers that have the potential ability to train at the Gold level. Athletes will have the opportunity to experience a high level of training, personal goals, character building and challenging oneself continuously.
Swimmers in this group will work consistently toward character development, self discipline and making informed daily decisions that will define the high level athlete they are capable of becoming.
Gold functions as a microcosm of the sport, whereby the strongest swimmers will ultimately rise to the top. The culture of this group is becoming more competitive all the time, and all swimmers have a daily opportunity to excel among their teammates. Athletes in this squad should be looking beyond Age Group competitions and be relentlessly seeking access to Senior National (open) and International Competitions.
Athletes in this squad must be prepared and willing to train at the prescribed volumes and intensities including maintaining a minimum 90% attendance in order to compete at swim meets.
Due to the high level of dedication, determination, and pushing the limits of oneself, there will be swimmers who at times may not be able to continue on with the program. Swimmers who have been asked to move to this group must enter with the understanding that it will be hard work, however many swimmers will be extremely proud of their accomplishments and at the same time will discover that it can also be a lot of fun too.
Those swimmers who are willing to commit to the work, follow the program and consistently push themselves beyond even their own expectations will be champions, in essence those who are “tough enough” will succeed.
Members of this squad will compete with success at the Regional, Festival, Provincial Age Group and National Age Group Championships. Although older swimmers will be a part of this squad at the outset, we will endeavor to make Sr. Silver a squad comprised of athletes aged 12-14. Pre-Gold will live up to its namesake- it will prepare athletes for promotion to the Gold Squad.
The focus of this squad’s training program is to offer training that is specific to the demands of racing, and bridge the gap from the general speed and endurance work that is done before the onset of puberty. Athletes will be challenged mentally and physically at practice as they learn to manage themselves through more complex training objectives.
Although this squad will not endeavor to offer the intensities demanded in Gold, the training program will be challenging nonetheless. Like Gold, this squad is a melting pot. Not every athlete who joins the squad will complete the season. This healthy attrition is present in all performance based programs in all sports, and our team should not be an exception.
Athletes will be promoted to this Silver 2 squad from Silver 1 between 9-12years old. Athletes may remain in this squad for extended periods as they prepare for placement in Gold.
Silver 1 and Bronze 2
The Silver 1 Squad, along with its sister group Bronze 2 will turn our young swimmers into young RACERS. Strokes will be re-taught and modified, drills will be mastered, training habits will be established and daily dryland training will be introduced.
Most importantly, swimmers will be Coached with enthusiasm and pushed to race each other every day. Athletes will learn to win, and to lose, with pride. Athletes will learn that the thrill of competition is the heart of the sport: that winning is special and worth chasing, and that losing is a lesson that must come over and over again to make those rare wins possible.
Bronze 2 will be for swimmers who graduate the Juniors program relatively quickly, and Silver 1 will be for swimmers who do not graduate our Juniors program until 10 years of age or who are placed on the team as older swimmers. This two pronged approach will ensure that all swimmers have an opportunity to move to Silver 2 at some point.
The strict age groupings in these two squads will ensure that athletes are trained in a manner appropriate to their stage of physical development, and standardized skill requirements can also be imposed more easily.
Swimmers will be placed in this squad directly from neighborhood or City lesson programs, from other competitive programs or will be promoted from our Juniors (learn to swim program) program.
Swimmers in this squad will develop the habits and skills that they will rely on as they progress in the program: reading the clock, counting strokes, breathing patterns, push-offs, dives, turns and breakouts.
Swimmers will also learn lane etiquette, sportsmanship and teamwork. Swimmers will be taught to see themselves as athletes not participants, and as racers not as recreational swimmers.
Last but not least, swimmers in the Bronze 1 Squad will perform basic training sets suited to their age and physical development.
Juniors is an entry level competitive program for 10 and Under swimmers. All facets of competitive swimming will be introduced and explained, and athletes will practice these skills, drills and techniques in fun environment that emphasizes racing and competition as often as possible. Athletes will be divided into small groups and work through the content of the practice under the direction of the Lead Coach.
Programs is for swimmers 10 & under who can swim at least 25m consistently.
Lane Coaches will be used to help teach objectives and manage the practice. This program is 8-10 weeks long and renews throughout the season. Please note: Session dates may vary. We do our best to set the dates in advance but the addition of swim meets throughout the season may force us to alter the session dates.
Athletes will be promoted into the Bronze 1 or 2 (on occasion the Silver 1) as they become ready to do so.
JUNIORS SESSION STARTS AND ENDS
SESSION 1 September 18, 2017 to December 11, 2017
SESSION 2 December 15, 2017 to March 9, 2018
SESSION 3 March 19, 2018 to May 28, 2018
Note: Mini meet will be held during each session, tentatively scheduled for - Dec 2, Mar 3 & May 26
The Alumni group is open to former NHAC members who have gone to post secondary education and who wish to return as club members during breaks in their education. This group will also be open to previous / past team members who comply with Swim Ontario regulations. These members will train with the Gold group and will be expected to adhere to the requirements of that group.
Our team attends a wide variety of swim meets throughout the season. Meets are an essential part of our program because they provide an opportunity for our swimmers to apply the knowledge and skill that they have attained during practice. Practices are generally cancelled when the team attends swim meets and, while attendance is not mandatory, meets are considered to be part of our training program. (The NHAC fee structure account for the fact that some practices are cancelled due to meets for our senior athletes.) Meets are posted on the Events section found on our home page. There will be information to let you know which groups should be attending.