How to Join NAC Swimming

At the NAC, we pride ourselves on keeping the team at a manageable size so that we can provide each swimmer with appropriate feedback and instruction. We also have limited lane space and need to ensure that practices run safely and smoothly. 

For the 2022-2023 season, we are full in all groups except Seniors and Developmental 2. If your swimmer meets the training criteria for either group, you may email [email protected] to discuss potential placement. We build swimmer technique sequentially, so we only take new swimmers mid-season at the discretion of a group's lead coach. 

First Steps

If you are interested in joining our team, please fill out our contact Google Sheet. Currently, this form is turned off, but we will open it again in late January for Spring Clinic inquiries. Even if you have emailed our staff or filled out a sheet in the past, it's important to fill out the current sheet-- often times families find other teams once we fill, and we're not sure how many of the inquiries are current. This gives us a ballpark of number of interested families for each new session. Starting in 2023, only families on our current interest list will receive new programming information.

It is the parent's responsibility to fill out the Google Sheet (when available). Even if you are forwarded season information from a current family, it's important to fill that out, too-- this provides more context for our coaching staff. 

If a current family referred you, please indicate that on your form! We try to prioritize referrals when we can.

Signing up for Evaluations

All new swimmers must attend an evaluation with a NAC coach (even if coming from NAC Swim Lessons, unless one of the coaches is the lesson instructor). Evaluation slots are first come, first served, and the link is emailed out with either our spring or fall/winter information. Once the sign up fills, we typically do not add any more spots. The only swimmers who will be given an evaluation outside of the sign up are family members of current swimmers and referrals from the coaching staff. Swimmers ages 13 and over with competitive swim experience and a list of best times (Middle Atlantic Silver level and above) may be able to bypass an evaluation. 

Evaluations are typically 1-on-1 with a coach so the coach can get a feel for the swimmer's individual learning style and ability to make changes quickly. We can sometimes evaluate siblings together provided they are similar ability levels.

When information goes out, sign up for an evaluation slot as quickly as possible. For Fall/Winter 2022-2023, all evaluation slots filled within 90 minutes of the link becoming public.

Please note that we often have more evaluation slots than spaces on the team with the understanding that not all swimmers will be qualified or be good fits for our program. While we can give you a ballpark idea of placement after the evaluation, we may not know if we have space until after the commitment deadline for returning families. We do follow up via email with every family who completes an evaluation.

Minimum Requirements

At minimum, swimmers should turn 6 within the first 3 months of the season. We often expect even our youngest athletes to show maturity equal to the average age of their group (so swimmers placed in Dev 1 should be able to listen and behave as a 7-8 year old, and swimmers placed in AG1 should be able to listen and behave as a 9 year old). 

Swimmers 8 and under must complete 25m each of freestyle with rotary breathing (face in water and breathing to the side), backstroke, and flutter kicking.

In addition to meeting the requirements for 8 & unders, swimmers 9-12 should have some knowledge of breastroke or butterfly with the ability to flip in the water and attempt a dive from the side of the pool, and/or demonstrate strong body control from other sports.

In addition to meeting the requirements for 12 & unders, swimmers aged 13 and over must be legal in all strokes, turns, and starts and able to swim on the intervals in the Junior group (eg, 10 x 100m FR on 2:00). 

If your swimmer is coming from another team or summer league, it's helpful to include best times for background.

Also-- make sure your swimmer is ready for the commitment! We are flexible with other sports, but our competitive team has minimum meet requirements. After all, you wouldn't join a baseball team to skip all of the games, right?

Next Opportunity to Join

The next opportunity to join our team will be for the 2023 Spring Clinic (usually running mid-April until the Thursday before Memorial Day). While we cannot guarantee Fall/Winter placement to our Spring Clinic families, they are prioritized over brand new inquiries.

Our summer programming is subject to lane availability and interest. It is very small and we usually do not take new swimmers for the summer. We recommend that you join a local recreational team (usually one in the Lower Bucks Swim League, like Lower Makefield Township Pool or Northampton Swim Team) and gain some experience.

What if I don't make the team?

If you miss out on an evaluation slot, please try again for the next season. Please note that you should fill out our contact form again so we know you are still interested in our team.

The same instructions go for swimmers who attend an evaluation but don't quite meet our qualifications! We recommend swim lessons or swimming on a more beginner team (summer league is a great introductory experience) so that you can try again. If you are looking for swim lessons at the NAC, please email [email protected] 

If you are still looking for a team for the season, there are others in the area that may have fewer space limitations or run with an open enrollment. Please check the USA Swimming Find a Team feature. In early fall, school-affiliated teams with the Suburban Aquatic League may have enrollment as well. In the summer, check out Lower Bucks Swim League