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Registration opens August 20th.

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Competitive Swimming With Mt. Lebanon Aqua Club

Mt. Lebanon Aqua Club swimmers are divided into five practice groups based on ability level:  Stingray, Dolphin, Barracuda, Marlin, and Shark.  Swimmers participate in practices with their groups and compete in local and national meets based on age groups defined by USA Swimming.  Below please find a brief description of each group.

Tryouts are required for all swimmers who are considering year-round competitive swimming with MLAC.  Information on tryouts can be found in the About menu.

Please note: while we strive to make the criteria for participation in each group as objective as possible, these criteria are guidelines and exceptions will occasionally be made based on the best judgment of our Age Group and Head Club coaches.


This group consists new to competitive swimming; others have been swimming for a year or two. Training involves stroke instruction along with start and turn instruction and development. Parents can expect an average of 3-4 hours of practice per week.


This group consists of swimmers able to swim all four strokes and be able to complete the 100 individual medley with appropriate stroke technique. Dolphin swimmers are also capable of doing a competitive racing start and can do freestyle flip turns in practice and in meets. The emphasis for this group is on stroke technique, starts, and turns. Parents can expect an average of 4-5 hours of practice per week.


This group is made up of swimmers who have achieved "B" time standards. Barracuda swimmers have a strong technique in all strokes, starts and turns and can complete the 200 Individual Medley with proper stroke technique. Barracuda swimmers are ready to build endurance and learn new training methods. Technique work and strength enhancement, including dry-land training, will be included in their average of 6-8 hours of practice per week.


This group consists of swimmers who have a majority of "BB" (or better) times. These swimmers are skilled in all four strokes and are capable of swimming 100 yard events in all four strokes, as well as some longer distance events such as the 400 Individual Medley and the 500 freestyle. Advanced training methods and continued stroke refinement prepare swimmers for senior swimming. Their workouts will be 8 or more hours per week with more intense dry-land training.


The Shark group consists of swimmers who have "A" times in multiple events. Our Shark swimmers have advanced skills and they have morning and afternoon workouts along with dry-land and weight training. Shark swimmers train anywhere from 12-18 hours per week, depending on the time of year.

About Moving Ahead

Decisions about moving a swimmer to another group are made by the coaching staff. The majority of moves come after the summer season. Occasionally, a few moves are made before the summer season. In special cases, the coaching staff will ask an individual to move to the next level during the season.

Swimmers are asked to move to a new group based on readiness and maturity. It is important to determine each swimmer's ability to phycially and emotionally handle the demands of the next level. Each group has skills and practice levels that need to be achieved in order to be prepared for practices.