Frequently Asked Questions

Swim Charleston

Updated May 2018

Q1.​What is Swim Charleston?

Swim Charleston is a USA Swimming recognized club.  The club is committed to developing swimmers to reach their swimming potential and empowering them to become community leaders.

Swim Charleston is a family.  Swimmers, parents, families, and coaches work together to empower our youth to become fast swimmers and community leaders. 

Swim Charleston believes strongly in focusing on these Pillars of Excellence. 

·       Have fun.

·       Work hard.

·       Demonstrate sportsmanship.

·       Serve in the community. 

·       Learn something. 

For more information, click on the About tab on our website. 

Q2.​Why “Swim Charleston?”

Swim Charleston is about combining character education, life lessons and community involvement with strong swim instruction.  As a non-profit organization devoted to teaching swimmers to become leaders, we are committed to embracing and serving the greater Charleston community.  Hence, Swim Charleston.

Q3.​What is Swim Charleston’s mascot?

We have chosen the Sailfish as our team mascot and light blue and dark blue as our team colors. Sailfish live in warmer sections of all the oceans of the world. They are predominantly blue in color and have a characteristic a large dorsal fin often called a tail.  Sailfish have been found swimming at speeds up to 68 mph, and they are among the fastest of any water organism.  We chose the Sailfish as our mascot because we intend to be fast!  

Q4.​What is the Team’s Structure?

Swim Charleston is a 501c3 nonprofit organization.  

Q5.​What are the fees? Are there hidden costs?

Our tuition is commensurate with other teams in the Charleston area. Tuition includes participation at any of our practice locations. 

In addition to our tuition, there will be fees for the following:

  1. New equipment:  see the website for approximate costs (hover on the Suits/Equipment tab then click on Equipment Lists)
  2. Meet fees:  meet fees typically run $35-$55 per meet per swimmer plus any hotel and gas expenses.  There are NO add-on travel fees charged by the club in 2018-19.
  3. Nonrefundable annual registration fees: $145/year. 
  4. Dry-land fees for Level 3-5 swimmers: $15/month.
  5. USA swimmer membership: ~$90/year. 
  6. Processing fees of $.30 per transaction and 2.95%.
  7. Late fees of $25/month.
  8. 30 day cancellation notice is required.  

Q6.​How do we pay fees?

All payments are electronic. Swimmers will be billed monthly on the first of every month.

Q7.​How will swimmer practice groups be assigned? How do swimmers “move up”?

Swimmers “move up” based on age. Upon an aging up birthday, coaches, parents and swimmers will decide whether a swimmer should move mid-season or between seasons and if mid-season, when the best time for the move would be. Level 1 = 8/under.  Level 1 Plus = some 7-8 year olds.  Level 2 = 9-11 year olds.  Level 2 Plus = some 9 year olds, some 10 year olds, most 11 year olds.  Level 3 = 12 and 13 year olds. Level 4 = 14 and 15 year olds.  Level 5 = 16 and up swimmers.  

Q8.​What affect does transferring have on USA Swimming Registration?

All swimmers transferring will be labeled “unattached” (they will appear in the heat sheet as “UN”) to satisfy the mandatory “120 day” rule. While unattached, all swimmers will still be able to compete in all meets and will not lose any competitive opportunities. For needed forms, see our Info Sessions/Preregistration tab on our website. 

Q9.​What will be expected from parent volunteers?

Swim Charleston is a family driven organization that depends on volunteer involvement for success. There will not be a specific policy with respect to hours or number of meets at which parents must volunteer. Instead,  we hope that families will believe in the organization enough to want to volunteer.

Q10. What do you mean when you say you will focus on “building leaders?”

We will teach our swimmers sportsmanship and leadership at practice and at meets, focusing on shaking hands, treating opponents with respect, and thanking volunteers from timers to officials.  We will have team events that focus on building leadership skills including community service. 

Q11.  Will the practice schedule change in the summer?

Practice schedules change at various times during the season, particularly during school holidays. 

Q12.  Who are the coaches and what is their background?

Please see the biographies on our website for more information about our coaches. We currently have 9 coaches. 

Q13.  Will there be a maximum team size?

Team size will likely reach a maximum of 150 -170 swimmers in 2018-19 depending on demand and available lane space.

Q14. Why group swimmers by age and not ability?

There is a lot of research about the importance of keeping children with their age peers and we will do this to the best of our ability, recognizing that there will be exceptions.  We will attend to differences in skill level and speed and endurance within each practice group, thereby ensuring that swimmers can enjoy the social benefits of the team. 

Q15.  Will we be required to fundraise?

There is no detailed fundraising requirement for Swim Charleston’s members but we do expect members to actively support the team and participate in annual fundraisers. 

Q16.  Is it safe for young swimmers to swim outside in the winter? 

Yes. Swimmers swim in heated water with outdoor air quality (which is far superior to that of indoors)!  We recommend swimmers leave cold weather gear (jackets or parkas and warm boots and hats) near the edge of the pool so that they can quickly use a towel to get dry before putting on their warm layers and walk to their transportation and/or the locker rooms.