WSC Coaching Philosophy

WSC’s coaching philosophy can best be described as a holistic approach to training. The various elements contained in this approach include the following:

SLOW SWIMMING - You must learn how to swim slowly and correctly before you can swim fast.

DRILLS - Any good competitive swim program utilizes simple stroke drills designed to enhance form in all training sessions. Drills should be simple and concise.

INDIVIDUAL MEDLEY - Young swimmers must learn to swim all strokes and perform in all distances. While everyone may like or dislike certain events, exclusive event and stroke specialization should be reserved for the college years and beyond.

TRAINING VOLUME - How much one trains is less a function of a set number of yards and more a function of individual abilities and capacity for work. The third law of learning states that an individual must be ready physically and mentally for learning to take place.

PLANNING - A coherent approach to each training session and each season, coupled with longer term planning, is vital to the health and growth of a successful swim team.

TOOLS - Any coaching philosophy must be grounded in common sense and based on the cooperative efforts of a well- trained coaching staff, motivated young athletes, supportive parents, and a cooperative facility staff.


If you have any questions about our approach, please talk with one of the coaches. Also, please check the bulletin board near the pool regularly for posted information.

Swimming Groups

Willamalane Swim Club has multiple levels of swim groups for athletes to explore competitive swimming.

Non-Competitive Swim Groups

 Pre-Team swimmers should have completed the Willamalane Park swim lessons curriculum or be of comparable skill. They should be able to swim 25 yards freestyle with successful side breathing or be recommended to the group from a coach.

Pre High School Swimmers should be of high-school age swimmers and preparing for or keeping skills sharp for the High School swim season. Swimmers ability will be reviewed by the coaching staff and will be placed in the appropriate group based on that review.

Masters Swimmers are a specific sub group of non-competitive swimmers that are looking to keep their skills sharp and to continue to have instruction from a seasoned Head Coach.

Once a swimmer reaches the level to be moved into the competitive swimming group, the coaches will refer the parents to our registrar or a board member for more information about the transition.

Competitive Swim Groups

Swimmers in the Novice, Age Group, Pre-Seniors/Seniors and Returning College swim groups are organized into groups corresponding to a combination of age and skill-level. Please read more on each swim group requirements on our Teams website under Swim Groups / Practice Times.

Transitions Between Groups

Swimmers generally advance through the groups as they get older and their skills progress. Several factors influence the decision to move swimmers from one group to the next: Mental and physical maturity of the swimmer, the composition of the groups, age, effort demonstrated in practices, and an attempt to keep cohorts of swimmers together when possible.

Although there is no set test or time to advance from one group to the next, movement between groups tends to happen at logical transition times during the year (when starting a new season, coming back from a break, right after a big meet, etc.) Also, movement from one group to the next is not necessarily an all or nothing arrangement. Some swimmers may ease into a new group by attending the practices of that group just a few days a week and continuing in their previous group the rest of the week.

Also, some swimmers may go down a group if a transition has been made prematurely, or if the swimmer has taken a substantial break. The senior group is reserved for very committed athletes. Not all swimmers will progress to the senior level. The WSC Masters & Returning College groups can include all swimmer members over the age of 18.

Parents are encouraged to discuss transitions with the swimmer’s coach, and keep the coach informed about how the transition is going. Ultimately the swimmer’s coach and the WSC head coach are responsible for making these transition decisions.

As of 2019, Willamalane Swim Club members who are 17 or older are REQUIRED to complete the APT Athlete Protection Training to meet the rules of USA Swimming.

Please note all USA Swimming members, 18 & over are required to complete the APT yearly per USA Swimming. If you do not, members will not be able to attend practices or compete in any meets, per USA Swimming.