What is Competitive Swimming?

Competitive swimming is an individual AND team-based sport where participants attend practices to train with the goal of competing in swim meets with a club team, high school or college team. Swimmers race competitors to improve their own times, and also focus on improving their technique and endurance during training.

Why Join Swimming?

Swimming is an inclusive sport; everyone can do it! Lifelong friends and great relationships are made through swimming and valuable lessons about time management and communication can also be learned. Swimming is a great outlet for an athlete’s mental health as well.

What is a meet like?

Meets are an opportunity for swimmers to race competitors with similar abilities or times. Many different swim clubs, high schools and colleges come together to race in a swim meet. The meet is divided into many different events categorized by stroke (Butterfly, Breaststroke, Backstroke, Freestyle, Individual Medley, or Relays), length (i.e. 50 yards or meters, 100 yards or meters, and 200 yards or meters), gender (Women, Men or Mixed) and age group (i.e. 8 & Under, 9-10, 11-12, 13-14, and 15 & Over). Each event is split into heats, and swimmers are organized into 6-8 lanes per heat. There is one swimmer per lane and usually multiple heats in each event, see below for an example swim meet program.

Swimming is not just about the place you get; individual time goals and growth in each event are prioritized within the sport. Swimmers should focus on improving their own time and acheiving new time standards instead of comparing themselves to others.  

Example swim meet program.