New to swimming? New to the Aquajets? Below we've tried to answer some questions you may have, parent-to-parent, to help you get acquainted with our club and swimming! As always, feel free to reach out to your Coach or one of our Board Members.
What level will my child be in?
Prior to registration, a coach will assess your child’s ability and place them in the appropriate group. The coach will also determine when your child is ready to advance to the next level. Key factors in advancement are attendance and progress. Move-ups may take place mid-season or at the end of the year for the following season. Swimmers in Mini Jets or Novice programs will receive a mid-season and end-of-season report card.
How do I know when my child has a practice?
Check the Programs tab - your group for your schedule. If there is a time change or a cancellation, the coach will send an email and update the website. Please allow yourself enough time to prepare for the practice – getting your bathing suit, cap and goggles on.
Why are there so many practices?
Competitive swimming is a sport based on speed and endurance. The more you practice, the better you will become. You build endurance, you learn new skills like flip turns and your swim strokes will be corrected.
Who participates in a swim meet?
During the 2018-19 swim season, the Aquajets will participate in a series of swim meets with the Oakville Aquatic Club, Hamilton Aquatic Club and Brantford Aquatic Club (HOBC for short). Each club hosts each other 1x during the season, for a total of 6 meets + a finale with all 4 clubs at the end of May. All Blue, Novice and Gold level swimmers can typically participate in these meets, provided you sign up before the deadline through the CAJ website. Coaches will send out an email with more details and information on deadlines for sign-up, but you should also keep checking the website so you don't miss one! There may be other swim meets throughout the year that our Coaches want to participate in and will communicate with the groups when this happens. You can also check the Events Calendar to keep up-to-date.
Junior & Ron's Groups participate in other meets across southern Ontario throughout the season, and coaches will communicate with their groups these dates/times or as well through the Events Calendar.
The next level of swim meet is Regionals. In order to attend Regionals, the swimmer must meet a qualifying time standard which can be found on the CAJ website. The swim season starts with Short Course Regionals (usually early February), where all races and time standards take place in a 25 metre pool. Long Course Regionals usually takes place at the beginning of June, and races/time standards take place in a 50 metre pool.
How do I find out the location of a swim meet?
Your coach will post the address of the pool on the website and you can Google map the directions. Coaches will also post the "Meet Package" for each meet, which you should take the time to read so you know when events will take place and what is expected of the swimmers. Ensure that you leave in good time and have enough time to find parking and the change rooms. Prior to the actual start of the swim meet there is a warm up time which the swimmer must participate in. The coaches would like swimmers to be on deck 15 minutes prior to the warm up.
What do I need to know about swim meets?
Pack your goggles, team cap, swim suit, towel and water bottle. It's a good idea to have an extra pair of goggles and cap in case one breaks during the meet, as well a couple of towels, as swimmers will dry off a few times between races. Swimmers are also required to wear their team shirt on deck (provided to each member at the beginning of the year). Parents should label their child’s belongings with their name and team name, as often things get mixed up when all the swimmers are together.
Most pools will not allow food on deck. The host teams will post a “Swim Meet Package” which will give the details and rules regarding parking, food on deck policy and other information you might need.
There is quite a bit of down time in between your child’s races, so it is good idea to bring something to keep them entertained (colouring, cards etc.) Valuables like phones/tablets etc. are not recommended.
Seating for parents is usually bleacher style and the swimmers are not allowed to sit with their parents. Once the meet starts, they must check in with the coaches if they need to leave the deck for any reason (visit a parent, use the washroom etc.) Races happen quickly and if a swimmer isn't on deck, they will miss their race, which can be upsetting for our young swimmers. Parents will not allowed on deck unless they are a volunteer/official.
Swim meets are usually quite warm so parents should dress in layers. It is also a good idea to bring a stadium seat for back support, and ensure you have time to find seating!
Programs are often available to purchase at the meets, which will provide a breakdown of the events swimmers are racing, including their heats and times. Parents should come prepared with a highlighter and pen to keep track of your team's swimmers in the program. Programs cost a few dollars and it is cash only.
Some clubs will post the results of races on a central wall in the pool area, shortly after events are finished.
"Meet Mobile" is a new app available for at a small subscription fee that many clubs are now using to post entries and results. If you are using a smart phone, you can download this to view real-time results for swim meets across Canada. The Aquajets use this at our meets.
Where do I buy swim gear?
Our team equipment can be purchased through the Online Store on the CAJ website. The store is available to purchase equipment at three different periods during the season (more information will be emailed when the "Stores" will be open). The store offers items like hoodies, warm up suits, bags, jackets and shirts. We also offer some seasonal items like hats and different sweatshirts which make great Christmas presents!
Team swimsuits, goggles and caps can be purchased year-round through our Equipment Manager or coaches. If you are looking for something specific, please email email@example.com
Other online stores where you can purchase items are Team Aquatics (Burlington), Ly Sports (Windsor) and Swim Outlet (US)
How do I become a swim official?
Many say that the best seat of the house is on deck as an official! All of our swim meets are run by volunteers, and each meet requires a minimum of 40-50 people. There are a number of positions on deck for parents to help, and the starting point is the “Timer” position. CAJ will offer a few "Learn How to be a Timer" clinics throughout the year, which are not only your introduction into being an official, but also a great opportunity to learn more about how swim meets work and what to expect.
More information can be found on our Officials page. To contact our Officials Chair, email firstname.lastname@example.org
Other useful tidbits
SNC (Swimming/Natation Canada) is the governing body of swimming Canada. Their website is www.swimming.ca . This is a great resource where you can see every race and meet that your swimmer has participated in. They keep track of all individual race times and you can see how you are progressing. Use the "Search" box to search for your child's name.
Swim Ontario www.swimontario.com has all your provincial swim news, time standards, race information etc.
www.swimnews.com and www.swimswam.com provide coverage of the North American swim scene
For more information on cancellation/financial policies, code of conduct etc., we encourage you to read the Cambridge Aquajets Parent Handbook , as it is an excellent resource for information about our club.