Preparing for a Swim Meet

Attending a swim meet is very exciting but can cause a bit of anxiety for anyone. To help your child calm their nerves make sure they have all the proper gear with them. Here is a list of suggested gear:

  • swim suit
  • 2 pairs of goggles
  • 2 team swim caps
  • 2 towels
  • permanent markers for marking event/heat/lane/stroke on arms for races (info. found on heat sheet)
  • reusable water bottle/sport drink/fruit juice and nutritional snacks. (No soda, candy, or junk food.)
  • money to purchase a heat sheet/ additional snacks at the venue
  • warm-up clothes to put over their swim suit between races and shoes (crocs, tennis shoes, etc.)
  • extra towels/ bag chairs/ sleeping bags/ stadium chairs for seating (may be needed for swimmer and parent)
  • Energy, enthusiasm, and team spirit!

At the meet: 

Before the weekend of each meet, the coach will announce the warm-up time for our team.  Arrive at least 15 minutes before your our team's scheduled warm-up time so your child is on deck and ready to swim at the appointed time. 

Encourage your child to stay with the coach and to ask the coach when/if there’s a good time to visit you in the stands. Most competition pools are set-up with the spectators seating above the pool for parents. Per USA Swimming rules/regulations, parents are not allowed on the pool deck, unless you are a coach, official, timer, or other volunteer personnel, and credentialed to be on the pool deck. This is for athlete safety, pool liability, and a great reason for parents to become involved in the club and volunteer for meets or officiating.

When you arrive at the swim meet, there is typically no cost of admission, but there are usually heat sheets available for purchase. This heat sheet is vital in determining when, and in what races, your child will be swimming.  Look inside for your child's event numbers, heat numbers, and lane numbers.  You can mark this information on your swimmer's arm.  

There are a lot of rules swimmers need to follow during their races at swim meets. Don’t be discouraged if your swimmer is disqualified in an event for doing something wrong. It happens to the best of them! Parents and swimmers are encouraged to visit with the coach about any disqualifications.

Parent/Guardian’s Role:

As the parent/guardian of a competitive swimmer, your main responsibility is to provide a caring and supportive environment for your athlete, the coaching staff and entire team. This support will encourage your child to feel good about his or her interest in competitive swimming. Show your support by insuring your swimmer’s attendance at practices and swim meets.

Parents/guardians are not participants on their child’s team but contribute to the success experienced by the swimmer and his or her team. Parents/guardians serve as role models, and children frequently emulate their attitudes. Strive to be a positive role model. Most important, show good sportsmanship at all times toward coaches, officials and other teams.