Please feel free to email your questions to [email protected]. Perhaps other families on the team have the same question and can benefit from seeing the answer here.

What is CSL?

Our team is a member of the Colonial Swimming League (CSL), which was founded in 1962 to sponsor competitive swimming among community swimming organizations in Northern Virginia. The primary objectives of the league are:

1) To foster a high level of competition between the teams

2) To develop the potential of individual swimmers

3) To single out for distinction individual swimmers, age groups and teams

CSL is comprised of four Divisions (Red, White, Blue and Gold) which consist of 5 or 6 teams that are competitively matched. The Stingrays are currently in the White Division.  Meets are scheduled for Wednesday night and Saturday mornings. Divisionals and All-Stars meets will take place at the end of the regular season.

What is ODSL?

The Old Dominion Swim League (ODSL) is a swim league founded in 2004 to provide developmental competitive style swim competition between communities in the greater Loudoun County area. We will swim against many of our neighboring communities such as Brambleton, Lenah Run and Broadlands, as well as Belmont Ridge and Stone Ridge. The meet schedule is very similar to CSL format; there will be Wednesday night and Saturday morning swim meets, and end of season Divisionals and All-Stars! Every swimmer is encouraged to swim three individual events and one relay in every meet. Divisionals and All-Stars Meets will have qualifying times.

I'm a parent of a Stingray, what league do we swim in?

Well that depends... At the beginning of each season you and your swimmer have to make a decision to swim in either the Colonial Swim League (CSL) or the Old Dominion Swim League (ODSL). This decision is voluntary but you can ask for the coaches to recommend a program based on the coaches observations of your child. CSL offers Wednesday night developmental swimming for all swimmers and Saturday morning meets that have time-based swimmer selection. ODSL offers all swimmers the opportunity to swim in every event at every meet. Both leagues offer ribbons, medals, records, and end of season Divisional and All Star meets. Odds are your swimmer probably just wants to be with his or her friends, so talk it over and if you have any questions please feel free to contact us at [email protected] This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

I'm a parent of a Stingray, how do I get my questions resolved?

Please email us at [email protected].

What are Swimmer Evaluations?

Any swimmer who is new to the Stingrays will complete a swimmer evaluation to ensure they can swim one length of the pool unassisted. Based on the outcome of the swimmer evaluation, a determination will be made as to if the swimmer needs to be reevaluated, is ready for developmental practice or is ready to participate in a meet. 

What are Time Trials all about?

Time Trials is an official team event (not a league event) conducted at the start of the season for the purpose of establishing a "seeding" time for each swimmer for each individual stroke. For our CSL program this time is then used for swimmer selection for the first 'A' meet of the season. As your swimmer's times improve from either Saturday or Wednesday night meets the newer, faster time is then used for swimmer selection on Saturday meets.

Who is eligible to swim in Meets?

For both programs, it is up to the coaches discretion as to who is ready to swim in a meet. Once swimmers are prepared to swim in a meet, the following eligibility requirements apply. For ODSL meets, all ODSL swimmers are eligible to swim in every meet.  For CSL meets on Wednesday night, all swimmers are eligible to swim. However, since the Stingrays Wednesday night 'B' meets are official CSL events, swimmers that placed 1st, 2nd or 3rd in a particular stroke the prior Saturday are not eligible to swim in those strokes.

What is an 'A' Meet (CSL Only)?

An 'A' meet is a term used within CSL for Saturday competitions between teams. An 'A' meet is competed for team points, team standing and age group champs within a given CSL Division. Coaches select the most competitive swimmers available for the given meet.

What is an 'B' Meet (CSL Only)?

An 'B' meet is a term used within CSL for Wednesday night "developmental" meets between teams. A 'B' meet allows all swimmers an opportunity to improve individual times in all strokes including the Individual Medley. There are no team points associated with a Wednesday night meet, only official individual times. Unlike the Northern Virginia Swim League, CSL allows 'B' meet times to count for qualifications for Divisionals. All Swimmers, except swimmers that placed in a particular event in the prior Saturday 'A' meet, are encouraged to swim and improve their personal times in 'B' meets.

What is the selection process for an 'A' Meet (CSL Only)?

The answer is actually simple and not so simple all at the same time. At the most basic level, the head coach simply selects his or her top 3 seeded swimmers in each individual stoke. Our team has an eligibility rule that states an 'A' meet swimmer must attend three practices during the prior week to swim on Saturday. CSL has another eligibility rule that states a swimmer can only compete in 3 individual events and 2 relays at any given 'A' meet. So if a top seeded swimmer in backstroke is not eligible to swim because he or she is already selected for free, breast and butterfly, then the 4th seeded swimmer in backstroke will be selected. What gets confusing to the uninitiated is that the coach will sometimes shuffle swimmers around in an effort to maximize points against the other team. Another selection option available to the head coach is a "swim-up". Suppose the team had an empty lane in the Boys 15-18 Backstroke due a lack of available swimmers. The coach has the right to select a younger swimmers to "swim-up" in that spot. Typical of a summer swim program, vacations and other person events do impact the swimmer eligibility to the point that swimmers seeded 4th, 5th or even 6th are sometimes selected for the Saturday meet. But under all conditions, the fastest eligible swimmers have to be selected for a given individual event. Every attempt is made to get as many kids as possible to participate in a meet.

Why does the team have a Late Fee/Cutoff for Registration?

Due to the amount of planning required to prepare the team for a new season, the BOD needs to know how many swimmers to expect for the season. Planning involves requesting pool space from the SR BOD, making Coaching Staff decisions as well as ordering goods like T-Shirts. 2004 was the first season where the team had to halt registration because we ran out of pool space! Due to the growth in new families in SR please expect our Swim Program to have planning challenges for several years.

So Who is Responsible for Upholding the Rules on our Team?

First and foremost the Team Representative is the primary recognized position on the team responsible for operating the team in accordance with the league rules. As you read through the rules you will notice that only the Team Rep is authorized to conduct protests and communicate with the Meet Officials. Second in line is our Head Coach, who is officially recognized within the league and must operate within the league guideline. Lastly, we have a cadre of parent volunteers trained as USA Swimming certified officials (http://www.usaswimming.org) responsible for upholding the guidelines of USA Swimming under which CSL operates. These positions include Referee, Starter and Stroke & Turn officials.

What does it mean if I see a 'D' next to my swimmer's time?

The 'D' indicates that swim was disqualified or more popularly referred to as DQ'd. A Stroke & Turn Official or Referee made a determination that your swimmer did not conduct the stroke legally, as defined by the USA Swimming regulations. With each DQ is a "DQ Slip" written by a Stroke & Turn Judge which documents what the violation(s) was. As a parent you and your swimmer are encouraged to discuss the DQ reason with the coach after the meet or at practice. The actual time is kept in the team's computer records but it can not be used for "seeding" purposes.

What's the difference between Yard Pools versus Meter Pools?

Most of the pools SRST swims in are 25 Meter pools but occasionally some of the older pools, such as Sugarland Run or Barrington, are 25 Yard pools. A "yard" being shorter by 3 inches than a "meter" means a swimmer's time will be better in a "yard" pool than our own home pool. The computer uses a conversion factor of 1 Meter = 1.1301 Yards or 1 Yard = 0.8847 Meters. These factors are not the strict meter-to-yard distance ratios, but are derived empirically based on averages of published USA Swimming conversion factors for events of 20 to 60 seconds. Since our team predominately swims in Meter pools all of our reports are printed in Meters.

What does it mean if I see a 'C' next to my swimmer's time?

The 'C' indicates that time was converted by the computer from either "Yards" to "Meters" or vice versa depending on the the report. Most of the pools we swim in are 25 Meter pools but occasionally, such as at Sugarland Run or Barrington, we do swim in a 25 Yard pool.