Swim meets start early and last for hours so it is smart to have everything ready in advance.  

Bring (1) swim essentials; (2) food/water; and (3) something to keep busy when waiting between events. 

Most meets do have concessions so you should have some cash as well.

Items needed for a swim meet:


  • Cooler. Although not all facilities will allow outside food in the facility, you can keep one in your car.

  • Healthy snacks like fruit, nuts, energy bars, yogurt, orange slices, grapes, fruit bars, carrots, goldfish, Ritz bits with peanut butter, cheese sticks.  

  • Lots of water to keep hydrated. Sports drinks are fine as long as kids are alternating between water and sports drink.

Swim Gear

  • Two swim suits: one for the meet plus a spare.

  • Two pair of Goggles: one to keep as a spare.

  • Team cap and one extra cap and baby powder.

  • Hairbands for ponytails/buns.

  • Lots of extra Towels - towels will get wet quickly. Consider having one for each session of the meet.

  • Warm socks, shoes or flip flops.

  • Extra appropriate clothing to keep warm.  Remember meets run rain or shine. Bring sweatpants, sweatshirt and/or t-shirt, hat, sunscreen.

  • Toiletries and change of clothes. Include brush, shampoo/conditioner, and deodorant.

  • Prescription medication if required.

  • Duffel bags or Backpack to hold gear.

Miscellaneous Items

  • Duffel Bag to hold items.

  • Plastic bag for wet items.

  • Blanket/tarps/sleeping bag.

  • Tents or EZ pop-up to protect from sun, wind  etc.

  • Sports chairs.

  • Games, cards, books, IPod, game boy, homework, paper, portable electronics.

  • Sharpie. Write your child's event/heat/lane on their arm or leg. Between events, parents may need to refresh any faded event numbers.