If you’re new to swimming, or even new to USA Swimming, you might be wondering what you’re getting (or gotten) into! Never fear – here’s a quick primer on the basics.

The following information comes from the USA Swimming. This site is a great resource for learning about our sport. As you survive your first few meets, you’ll probably find yourself digging deeper for more information about qualifying times, rules, procedures, and so on. Chances are, if you look around on the USA Swimming web site, you’ll find the answers to your questions.

  • Basic Rules – This is a good introduction to USA swimming rules – it’s a short page that lists the most common reasons swimmers are disqualified in each stroke.

  • Official Rules - Note: this page contains links to the official rules, which can get pretty technical. It’s not easy reading, but if there’s any doubt about a rule, you should find the answer here. There is a short version of the rule book that contains only the technical rules - this is an excellent reference document, and it will answer 99% of rule questions.