Frequently Asked Questions
Q: My family is brand new to organized swimming -- what is my best source of information to learn the ropes?
A: KFST provides a lot of information here on the website for new swim families, especially in the Swim Team Guide. In addition, parents who have been around for a few years are great sources of information. If you attend your child's practice, look for a returning parent or a Board Member on deck. We try to cultivate a friendly atmosphere among families and most parents are willing to share their experiences. In addition, you can write to [email protected] to ask your specific questions.
Q: How will I know if practice or a swim meet is canceled due to weather?
A: Safety of our families is of the utmost importance. In case of inclement weather, it is the job of the pool operator to determine the safety of entering the water. Generally speaking, if thunder is heard or lightening is spotted, there is a mandatory delay of 30 minutes in pool activities and all in attendance must seek cover and the pool operators close the pool. In case of a meet, the Meet officials and Team Representatives will determine whether a meet is to be delayed or called off due to bad weather.
Q: What is the difference between A & B Swimmers and Meets?
A Meets are generally held on Saturdays and are the meets that count towards our MCSL league standing points. B Meets are generally held on Wednesdays, and are not scored for MCSL points. However, ribbons are awarded in both meets and all times are recorded for our team information.
A Meet rules limit the number of entrants per event to 3 per team (except for freestyle, where 6 swimmers are allowed in the younger age groups); therefore, our coaches tend to schedule the 3 swimmers with the 3 fastest times in each event for A Meets, with each swimmer limited to 3 events (the IM does not count as one of the 3, nor do relays) total in any given meet. In B Meets, everyone has the opportunity to swim -- there is no limitation on the number of swimmers each team may enter in a given event.
The swimmers who consistently finish in the top 3 and are therefore scheduled to swim at A Meets generally expect to be entered each week in the "A" meets. However, the "B Swimmer's" goal is to improve skill and speed to the point that those swimmers will improve to "A Swimmer" status. Our coaches will post time ladders at the pool to give swimmers an idea of their ranking against their peers. We would love to have numerous swimmers in each age group that on any given day can beat the others in a race and win a spot in the "A" meets.
Q: Who decides if my child is an A Swimmer or a B Swimmer?
A: The coaching staff makes all decisions on practice groups and competition in meets (i.e., which swimmers swim in which lanes during practices and which swimmers are entered in the "A" Meets, etc.). If you feel that your child is inappropriately placed (either too high or too low) or if you have scheduling conflicts with the practice times, you should discuss this matter with the head coach. There tends to be fluctuation between "A" and "B" groups during the season as children improve their skills, so swimmers & parents should check the meet entries EACH WEEK to see if their child is listed for the "A" meet, as changes on a weekly basis are expected
Q: How do I know if my child is swimming in an A Meet or a B Meet on a given week?
A: The coaches will decide by AM practice on a Friday which swimmers will be entered in the next morning's A Meet. The entries will be posted at the pool and on the website, and it is the swimmer's responsibility to check the list for their name. IT IS VITAL THAT YOU INFORM THE COACHING STAFF BY THURSDAY MORNING IF YOU WILL BE OUT OF TOWN & THEREFORE UNAVAILABLE FOR A MEET! In case of illness, inform the coaching staff ASAP if you feel you will be unable to attend.
Everyone is eligible to swim in B Meets and encouraged to do so. However, if you swim an event in an A Meet, you cannot enter the same event in the immediately subsequent B Meet. For example, if a swimmer swims 8 & Under Boys 25 Free, 25 Fly, and 25 Back in an A Meet, at the subsequent B Meet, he may only enter the 25 Breast, not any of the 3 events he swam the prior A Meet.
The specific entries for B Meets are not generally posted in advance -- the expectation is that all A & B Swimmers will attend all B Meets unless they inform the coaches otherwise. Preteam participation in A & B Meets is limited to the half-time kickboard listed on the schedule handed out at the Parent Meeting.
Q: How do coaches choose among the swimmers for the A Meet Entries?
A: Generally speaking, the coaches make their choices by times. In each A or B Meet event a child enters, their times for each event are recorded in a database maintained by our team's automation representative, and the coaches consult these lists to inform their decisions. The times recorded at Time Trials will be used to help make decisions for entries at our first meet. That's why it's important for all swimmers (except Preteam) to attend the Time Trials. We need to record everyone's baseline times!!!
With the goal of winning meets (i.e., scoring points) we obviously want the 3 kids entered in each event that have the best chance of winning at A Meets. The higher the finishing place, the greater number of points earned. However, different circumstances can also come into play, including injury, vacations and other schedule conflicts, etc., that may influence the coaching staff's decisions on A Meet entries.
Q: What exactly is a Time Trial?
A: The Time Trial (scheduled for the second Saturday in June 6 - arrive at 8:15 a.m.) is a mock meet. Only our team participates, but the meet is run according to the schedule and rules of a regular A Meet. This process has many purposes. It allows kids, many of whom are new to swimming, an opportunity to see what it's like to go up to the starting line of a race, listen for the instructions of the referee and starter, and legally start their race. The swimmers will be able to record times for each event having been performed in "meet conditions" to establish their baseline entry times for future meets. In addition, this is a great opportunity for parents to learn what a meet is like and to learn or hone their skills at officiating a real meet. First-time parents are encouraged to work as timers at the Time Trials so that they too can become accustomed to meet conditions.
Have any questions you think might benefit all King Farm Swim Team participants?
Please submit them to the KFST [email protected]