Frequently Asked Questions...

Welcome to LMYA's resource page.  We have tried to capture the most common questions asked by many swim families over the years.  If you have a question not addressed here, do not hesitate to reach out to one of LMYA's Board Members or Committee Members.


Shortcuts to FAQs: Swim Program | Registration | Team Communication  | Practices | Swim Meets | Parent Participation | My Team Unify Account | Team Processes | Swim Lessons | Facility Use Rules



What programs are available?

All programs are detailed under the Programs section.  Click on each program to see more info: Spring Clinics, April Conditioning, Swim Team, and Gutter Guppies.   


How do I know which program is right for my child?


Spring Stroke Clinics & Conditioning

Swim Team

Gutter Guppies


6-18 years old

5-18 years old

3-6 years old


One year prior swim team experience required

Swim 25 yards and breath unassisted


No prior team experience or stroke knowledge needed

Swim 10-15 feet and take a breath unassisted


Specific review of stroke technique

Competitive stroke technique, starts and turns (if applicable)

Introduction to freestyle, back stroke, breast stroke (possibly butterfly and dives if time/ability allows)


Coached from the pool deck, high ratio of swimmers to coaches due to expected experience level of participants

Coached from pool deck


Younger age groups (8 & unders) have in-water coaching assistance. (approx. one junior coach for each 2 lanes)

Coached from pool deck with in-water junior coaching assistance (approx. 1 in-water coach for every 4 swimmers)

Parent Participation

Not applicable

Parent participation required

No parent participation required


Not applicable

All swimmers encouraged to participate in meets

One exhibition swim at a meet at the end of the program

Are there try-outs?

There are no tryouts for LMYA Swim.  However, because this is a swim team and not learn to swim lessons, we do require swim team members to be able to swim 25 yards unassisted.


For the Gutter Guppies, Yes. Again, since Gutter Guppies is not a learn to swim program, but a pre-team experience to help introduce new swimmers to various stroke, we do require these swimmers to be able to swim at least 10-15 feet without assistance and be able to take a breath on their own. Evaluations will be held in late May or early June.



How does registration work?

Online registration typically opens February 1st!  You can fill out all the necessary registration information as well as pay online. Although registration continues through the first day of the season, we encourage early registration, which offers a discounted fee and gives us an opportunity to invite you to pre-season activities.


Will there be an Informational night?

Yes. Our Information Night will be held on TBD at 6:00pm in the Acalanes High School cafeteria. While registration and job sign-ups will be online this year, we will have our leadership team and coaching staff on hand to answer registration and swim team questions.


When does the season run?

Official swim season begins with pre-season practice from April 30 to June 6 and continues with summer swim practices runs from June 10 to July 26th.  County qualifiers continue through the County Meet (August 2-4th, 2019). 


Optional Sunday stroke clinics are held between March 3 to April 28th for experienced, prior swim team members.  An optional April swim conditioning program is offered between TBD.


What are the overall costs or fees for joining the swim team?

Please see the Registration Information page for more information about registration fees.   Discounts are given for siblings and early registration for swim team participation.   


Other, seasonal fees may include meet entry fees, additional or personalized spirit wear (all swim team members get a team t-shirt, a personalized team cap, and a high quality team suit), attendance at certain social functions (where there is an associated cost) and job buyouts/fine (if applicable). 


Equipment needed:  Practice competition-type suit ($30-40), tight-fitting goggles (i.e. Speedo or TYR $12-20), practice fins (swim team members only -- $15-25), swim cap (silicone does not pull the hair as much as latex).


What is the refund policy?

If a registration cancellation/refund request is received before a program begins (stroke clinics or swim team registration), a refund can be issued less a processing charge of $20 per swimmer for clinics and $50 per swimmer for swim team.  No refunds can be issued or pro-rated after a program has begun.


Team Communication

LMYA sends out routine communications throughout the season to keep families informed of events, activities and deadlines for various team functions.
Weekly Team Director's Updates and Coaches Corner
Each week an e mail will be sent to families with a message from both the Team Director and Head Coach. Important team activities, successes on deck, things to know etc. will be communicated by the Team Director. The LMYA Head Coach will include a message about the weekly stroke instruction, goals for swimmers, and expectations for the coming week.
Meet/Event Sign Up Notifications
Notifications on event sign ups will be generated by the system when an event is open. These notifications will outline what is available for sign up and the deadline for entries. Some will include special instructions i.e. if the event is a paid by participant event such as an Invitational or optional team social. Key information including what one can sign up for in the event are outlined in the Meet/Event Sign Up Notification.


Where are practices held?

All practices are held at Acalanes High School Pool , 1200 Pleasant Hill Road, Lafayette CA in the Heaston Aquatic Center, a newly remodeled 16 lane, 25 yard competition pool.


When are practices?

Practice schedules for each program are listed under Practices and Meets. 

Clinic Schedule

Preseason Practice Schedule (April 30 – June 6)

Summer Practice Schedule (June 10 – July 26)

Gutter Guppy Schedule (June 10 – July 26)


Are there differences between the evening practices and the daytime practices in the summer?

While we offer evening practices to accommodate our families who have other commitments during the day, to get the most out of our program, we do encourage all our swimmers to attend their specific age group practices during the daytime in the summer.  Evening practices should be attended by our stronger swimmers for swimmer safety.  Here are some key differences:


Daytime summer practices

Evening summer practices

       Focused age group practices for each age group

       Coached from the deck AND in the water for younger age groups

       Offered 5 days/week

       Broader age groups practice together (8 and unders, 9 and ups)

       Coached from the deck with more limited staff

       Offered 3 evenings/week


**We do NOT encourage double day workouts for our swimmers.  This is a recreational swim team program.


Can my child swim with a different age group?

In order to focus the age group practices appropriately to the attention span, abilities and requirements for each age group, the coaches ask that swimmers swim with their own age group for practices.  At meets, all swimmers need to swim with their own age group as well (as determined by their age on June 15 of the current year). 


What are the different types of Meets?

        Dual/tri meets: meets with one or two other teams. Usually swimmers can choose 3 individual events. Coaches choose relays.

       Invitational meets  such as the Otter Invitational, Battle of the Ages, Devil Mountain Pentathlon are typically open to all swimmers on the team (except the Otter Invitational which is only open to swimmers 8 years old and under). There are no qualifying times for these meets and swimmers are encouraged to attend as each meet has a different theme or provides swimmers with the opportunity to swim different events. These meets typically have entry fees of about $15-$20 per swimmer which are paid for by the participant families upon entering the meet.  These meets typically have a Clerk of the Course which is an organized method of lining up all swimmers for their events sinve there are usually many heats of each event. Most of see meets do not have relay entries.  See each event for details.

ýý     Lafayette Swim Conference Championship Meet is a final meet with all the members of our Lafayette Swim Conference: LMYA, Oakwood, Pleasant Hill Dolfins, Rancho Colorados, Springbrook and Sun Valley. There are no qualifying times, ALL SWIMMERS ARE STRONGLY ENCOURAGED TO ATTEND.  Entry fees are paid by team.  Each individual can enter 3 events. Coaches form relay teams. Events are run with preliminary and finals heats.

       Contra Costa County Championship Meet: For 58 years, LMYA has hosted the County Meet -- the premiere recreational swimming event in the County.  Although this meet is for swimmers meeting the county qualifying times, it is also LMYA's major fundraiser that allows us to rent the Acalanes High School facilities for the season.  Therefore, all LMYA families are required to work at the County Meet.


How do I sign up for meets?

ýý     Upon a meet being posted or available, (announcements made via email)

ýý     Go to the event, select “register”

ýý     Declare each of your swimmers’ attendance at the meet (that they will or will not attend)

ýý     Select the strokes/events for which you want to enter your swimmer


What are entry fees and who pays them?

Entry fees are charges for swimmers entering invitational meets such as the Otter Invitational 8 & Under Meet, Battle of the Ages and Devil Mountain Pentathlon.  Families entering these meet will be responsible for the meet entry fees.  These will be paid through your Team Unify account upon entering the meet, so please make sure you have activated your account’s Auto Pay.  LMYA pays entry fees for the Lafayette Swim Conference Meet and the County Meet. 


How do I determine which strokes to enter my child?

Since this is a recreational program, swimmers are encouraged to attend meets and try all strokes.  Different from most other teams, at LMYA, we typically allow families/swimmers to choose their own strokes.  Sometimes there are restrictions on the number of swimmers entering certain events due to the forecasted timing of the meet (i.e. IM).  But at most meets, swimmers may choose up to 3 individual events.  Based on swimmers’ availability, the coaches will assign relay teams.  Swimmers’ times may also be a basis for relay teams .  Relay team assignments are subject to change, so please confirm relay assignments upon arriving for warm ups.  (If a swimmer was assigned to a relay team, but is late to warm-ups, their spot may be given to another swimmer who arrived in time for warm-ups.) 


What are the strokes?

Competition strokes or events include:  Freestyle,  Backstroke, Breast Stroke, Butterfly and Individual Medley.  Relays include a Medley Relay (where each of 4 swimmers swim a different stroke) and Freestyle Relay (where each of 4 swimmers swim the freestyle).

What are the events and order of events for meets?

Each meet is run differently, but in general, for dual and tri-meets the order of events is as follows:

ýý     Medley Relay (4 swimmers each swim a different stroke:  Back, Breast, Fly, Free). 

ýý     6 & under girls (each swimmer swims 1 lap/25 yards of their stroke)

ýý     6 & under boys (each swimmer swims 1 lap/25 yards of their stroke)

ýý     7-8 girls(each swimmer swims 1 lap/25 yards of their stroke)

ýý     7-8 boys(each swimmer swims 1 lap/25 yards of their stroke)

ýý     9-10 girls (each swimmer swims 2 laps/50 yards of their stroke)

ýý     9-10 boys (each swimmer swims 2 laps/50 yards of their stroke)

ýý     11-12 girls (each swimmer swims 2 laps/50 yards of their stroke)

ýý     11-12 boys (each swimmer swims 2 laps/50 yards of their stroke)

ýý     13-14 girls (each swimmer swims 2 laps/50 yards of their stroke)

ýý     13-14 boys (each swimmer swims 2 laps/50 yards of their stroke)

ýý     15-18 girls (each swimmer swims 2 laps/50 yards of their stroke)

ýý     15-18 boys (each swimmer swims 2 laps/50 yards of their stroke)

ýý    Individual Medley (same gender/age progression as above) – 100 yard event for all swimmers

ýý     6 & unders do NOT swim this event

ýý     7-8’s and above each swim 1 lap of each stroke (Butterfly, Backstroke, Breaststroke, freestyle)

ýý     Freestyle (same gender/age progression as above)

ýý     25 yard event for 6 & unders and 7-8’s

ýý     50 yard event for 9-10’s through 13-14

ýý     100 yard event for 15+

ýý     Breaststroke (same gender/age progression as above)

ýý     25 yard event for 6 & unders and 7-8’s

ýý     50 yard event for 9-10’s through 13-14

ýý     100 yard event for 15+

ýý     Backstroke (same gender/age progression as above)

ýý     25 yard event for 6 & unders and 7-8’s

ýý     50 yard event for 9-10’s through 13-14

ýý     100 yard event for 15+

ýý     Butterfly (same gender/age progression as above)

ýý     25 yard event for 6 & unders and 7-8’s

ýý     50 yard event for 9-10’s through 13-14

ýý     100 yard event for 15+

ýý     Freestyle Relay (same gender/age progression as above) 

ýý     All 8 & under swimmers swim 1 lap/25 yards

ýý     All 9 & up swimmers swim 2 laps/50 yards


What do I bring to meets?

ýý     Swimmer’s gear:  team suit, team cap, goggles, spirit wear, towels, extra layers of dry clothing, parka, blankets/sleeping bag

ýý     Information:  meet program and/or meet sheet

ýý     Camp gear: Shade tent, lawn chairs, mats/blankets for setting up “camp”

ýý     Entertainment: Games, crafts, activities, books for entertainment between events

ýý     Nourishment: water, healthy snacks, fruit.  Snack shack facilities are usually available at all meets.   REMINDER: NO ALCOHOL IS PERMITTED anywhere on the Acalanes High School campus.

ýý     The STARS of your LMYA Dolphins Winning Attitude:  Sportsmanship, Team Spirit, Achievement, Respect and Success

ýý     Please leave your pets at home as most meet locations -- including Acalanes High School -- do not permit pets.


What time do I need to be there for a meet?

A meet sheet will be available prior to each meet which will include meet information such as location, warm up times, meet start times, worker check in times and camp set up areas.  A good general practice is to arrive about 1 hour before the meet start to get set up, check meet program or shepherd reports for your swimmers’ events and to allow them to get to warm-ups on time and organized/lined up for their first events.  Most work shifts need to be checked in at least 30 minutes in advance of the meet start.


Where do I set up?

The meet sheet will indicate where team camp areas are to be located.  At the Acalanes High School pool, typically, LMYA families set up on the south side of the deck underneath the scoreboard.  Visiting teams set up in the west area between the fence and the building.  


What if my swimmer is signed up for a meet but cannot make it?

Please email the coaches (,, meet director ( about any absences.  If you entered a meet with a meet entry fee that has been charged, we are not able to refund these fees as they are due with the entries to the host team.


What if I miss the entry deadline for a meet?

Please watch the entry deadlines closely and ensure you enter your swimmers in time. In most cases, entries will be available well in advance and can be changed up until the deadline.  It is a good practice to enter swimmers upon a meet becoming available rather than waiting until the deadline.  Unfortunately, late entries are nearly impossible to accommodate – either because the entry files have already been communicated with the host team or because of the extra work required of our desk volunteers to accommodate last minute changes. 


What are the parent participation requirements?

Parent participation requirements are described under Parent Participation on the website.


Why are there parent participation requirements?

Since the LMYA swim team is completely operated by parents (with the exception of the coaching staff).  Unlike other team sports such as soccer, basketball or baseball, it takes about 50-60 parents to run EACH swim meet.  Without parent participation, we would not be able to run any meets or organize the team’s activities. 


In addition, the Contra Costa County Championship Meet has been hosted by LMYA for 58 years as our major fundraising effort for the season.  Without this meet, we would not be able to enjoy or fund the use of the Acalanes High School facilities – a significant expense that most club teams in the area do not incur.  Therefore, each family is required to work at the County Meet to support the team regardless of whether you have individual qualifiers for this meet. 


How do I know how what is expected for a certain job?

All parent job descriptions (for board members, committee roles, individual meet jobs and county meet jobs) are posted under Parent Jobs on the website.  If you are still unsure, ask the Parent Jobs Coordinator ( or the Meet Director ( for your meet.


How do I sign up for parent jobs?

Parent job sign-ups will be available under each event.  For specialized jobs such as Stroke & Turn, Desk or Shepherds, please ensure you notify the Parent Job Coordinator that you want to be on these teams as only team members will be able to sign up for these jobs that require a little training.  Watch for email communication for further instructions on job sign-ups.

Parent Jobs Reminers

A parent job e mail will be sent out reminding families of their assigned jobs prior to a meet. These are a reminder only as parent jobs are confirmed at the time of sign up


What if I can't make my job commitment?

Once you are confirmed in a job commitment, it is your responsibility to either work the job or find an appropriate substitute.  The approved LMYA Substitute Worker list can be requested by emailing If you are interested in becoming a substitute, please email the Parent Job Coordinator at


If you are a no-show to your scheduled job commitment, as described in the registration agreements, there will be a fine of $100 for regular meets or $200 for the County Meet. 


Who do I check in with for jobs?

The Swimmer Check-in rep and/or Assistant Meet Director will be in charge of checking in workers at the meet.  Please find them at the meet and check in with them to ensure they know you are available for your work shift.



How to I activate Auto Pay in my Team Unify Member Account?

  • Sign In into your account

  • Click on My Account

  • Then Setup Auto Pay

  • Click on the pull down menu and select Automatically charge CREDIT CARD

  • Click on the Edit link and fill in the data completely and Save Changes

  • Once that window closes, click Save Changes at the bottom right of the page

  • You are now ready to pay for team expenses electronically!

Why do I need to activate Auto Pay by entering my credit card information again?

In Team Unify, registration for programs is separate from activating a member account.  Registering for a program with a credit card does not automatically activate your member account.  By activating Auto Pay in your member account, we will eliminate the need for manual processing of payments for charges such as team apparel, meet entry fees and any other social event charges.  Your credit card information is secure through the Team Unify sight (probably more-so than previous check processing has been). 



What is the expense reimbursement process?

Approval and Reimbursement Process

  • All expenses should be pre-approved before being incurred.  Expenses NOT approved in advance may not be reimbursed by the team.
  • All expenses require receipts for reimbursement.  Expenses without receipts will not be reimbursed.
  • An expense reimbursement request must be submitted within 14 days of the date on which the expense was incurred.
  • The Team Director or Assistant Team Director will review all expense reports, provide approval and forward to Team Treasurer for payment. 
  • The Treasurer will make every effort to distribute reimbursement checks in a timely manner. At a minimum, checks will be issued within 2 weeks of receiving the reimbursement request.

Expense Reimbursement Request Form must be accompanied by receipts and sent to and/or


What kinds of lessons are offered through the LMYA Swim?

As a recreational swim team, LMYA is not a learn-to-swim program, so we are not structured, staffed or trained to offer learn-to-swim lessons.  Our private coach’s lessons are offered by the LMYA coaches to LMYA swim team members during the summer practice session (generally from Jun 10th – July 26th between noon and 2:30pm).  We rent the Acalanes High School pool, so we do not have use of the pool facilities outside our practice times while school is still in session. 


How do I sign up for lessons with coaches?

When the summer session approaches, there will be an online lesson request form that you can complete.    In order to give all swimmers equal access to the coaches, we will generally limit lessons with any one coach to 2 weeks per swimmer unless there are additional openings that are not filled.


How do I pay for lessons with coaches?

Each coach has a lesson rate and timeframe based on their experience and availability.  Once a lesson is confirmed with a coach, it is your obligation to pay the coach directly for the lesson time (on the first day of the lesson) WHETHER OR NOT YOUR SWIMMER IS ABLE TO MAKE IT.  There are NO MAKE-UPs.


Are there other lessons programs available before the summer swim season? 

A number of local organizations offer swim lessons.  While not part of or specifically endorsed by LMYA, here is a partial list of some local programs that offer lessons:


Harriett Plummer Aquatic School

Address:  1150 Nogales St., Lafayette, CA 94549

Phone:   (925) 943-7331


Sherman Swim School

Address:1075 Carol Ln, Lafayette, CA 94549

Phone:(925) 283-2100


Acalanes Union High School District

Phone:  (925) 280-3928



Pleasant Hill Parks and Recreation

Address:  147 Gregory Ln, Pleasant Hill
Phone:  (925) 682-7830 .


Irving Deutscher Family YMCA

Address:350 Civic Dr, Pleasant Hill, California 94523

Phone:(925) 687-8900


City of Walnut Creek, Clarke Memorial Swim Center in Heather Farm Park

1750 Heather Drive, Walnut Creek
(925) 943-5856



LMYA Swim Team rents the Acalanes High School pool facilities to run our program each year.  In order to retain our use of this facility, it is important that ALL facility users abide by the Facility Usage Agreement set forth by the Acalanes Union High School District as follows: 


General Pool Rules 

The rules listed below are a guide for the personal safety of the athletes and spectators.  They should not be considered the only rules that have to be enforced.  Facility users should use common sense while on duty, and enforce any measures needed to ensure the safety of athletes and spectators. 


•               No running, pushing, or shoving on the pool deck or inside buildings.

•               No pushing or pulling into the water.

•               Standing/sitting on shoulders in the pool is not permitted.

•               No playing or hanging on the ropes or lane lines.

•               No back dives/jumps/dives off the side of the pool.

•            Feet first pool entry except while practicing racing stars or during swim competitions starting off the blocks.

•               Horseplay and jumping are not permitted around the stairs and ladders.

•               No towel snapping.

•               Children under 5 must be accompanied by an adult at all times.

•            Glass containers are not permitted in the pool area.

•            Possession of or use of any tobacco products on any AHUSD campus is prohibited.

•            Consumption or possession of alcohol on any AUHSD campus is prohibited.

•            State law prohibits animals and/or pets in the facility.

•            Using the pool and facilities while under the influence of alcohol or other controlled substances is prohibited and is grounds for removal/expulsion from the facility.

•            Under no circumstances will foul/abusive language be tolerated.  Repeat offenders will be asked to leave.

•            Rescue equipment should only be used in an emergency.  This includes but is not limited to reaching poles, shepherd’s crook, rescue tubes, backboards, etc.  Rescue equipment should be properly stored and accessible at all times.


Failure to comply with these rules put forth by the Acalanes Union High School District as a condition of LMYA’s use of the facilities may compromise LMYA’s ability to use these facilities in the future and may result in a family/swimmer being asked to immediately leave the facility and possibly the team.


In addition to the AUHSD rules listed above, please ensure you and your swimmers following these rules as well:

•              No scooter, skateboard or bike riding is allowed on the pool deck

•              Water polo balls (and other equipment on the deck) is not for LMYA’s use

•            Shower use is to be supervised and limited by parents to ensure the facilities are not damaged in any way. 

•            Horseplay in, around and under the bleachers is not permitted