The YMCA of Northwest Louisiana offers training and practice groups for swimmers of all ages and ability levels of competitive swimming. It is the goal of YNWL to offer age specific training for all of our athletes geared towards challenging each individual and developing each individual to the best of THEIR abilities.

To send an email request for more information, Click Here, or contact Head Coach John Janszen directly by email or by calling the BHP Billiton YMCA at 318-674-9635

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Practice Schedules (click each to view/print) 

 

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Group Descriptions

(CLICK HERE for full descriptions and details)

Required Equipment Lists by Group: (click)

Pre-Age Group Level I (8 & Under) – Southside location only

This practice level is for young swimmers new to the sport and whom do not yet have the basics of all 4 competitive strokes and/or that are still working on building an endurance base.

Attendance: Two practices per week are recommended

Age Group Level I (10 & Under)

This level is for 8 & under swimmers and some 9-10 swimmers who are knowledgeable but not proficient in all four competitive strokes. The emphasis is on developing the fundamentals of the strokes, starts and turns by means of drills and games in an enjoyable atmosphere for instruction. Swimmers learn the basic rules of competitive swimming.

Attendance:  Two to three practices per week are recommended.

Age Group Level II (9-12)

This practice level is designed for established 9-10-year-old swimmers and 11-12 year olds with some skills refining needed. Improving stroke, start and turn techniques will be the primary emphasis in this level. It will serve as an introduction to the highest levels of age group swimming. Mild distances and endurance work will be introduced at practices. Level II swimmers will also begin to learn the basics of dryland movements for motor skill development, coordination, and overall improved body awareness.

Attendance:  Three practices per week are recommended. 

Age Group Level III (11-14)

This practice level is the top Age Group level for 14 & Under swimmers. This level is designed for established 11-12 year-old swimmers as well as developing 13-14’s.

Strong emphasis is placed on technique refinement with a stronger conditioning experience. General Aerobic, IM, Kick, and Sprint work is also emphasized along with introductory dryland and general body strengthening. Racing strategies and mental preparation are also introduced.  

Attendance:  Three to four practices per week are recommended. 

Age Group Level IV (12-18)
More advanced 13yr olds coming out of Level III may skip Level IV and move to V with coach approval

This practice level is the top Age Group Practice Level. This level is designed for Jr. High and High School age swimmers that are at an Intermediate Level of skill development, competition, and commitment to the sport. Level IV is also great for those High School age swimmers that enjoy the sport more socially and for physical activity rather than competition.

Continued strong emphasis is placed on technique refinement while also increasing the overall aerobic and training load. General Aerobic, IM, Kick, and Sprint work is emphasized along with dryland and general body strengthening & stability. Racing strategies and mental preparation are also built upon.  

Attendance:  Four practices per week are recommended

Senior Level V (13 & Older)

“Senior” Level swimming begins a pronounced shift of focus from practicing to training while also maintaining an emphasis on stroke technique improvement & race strategy execution. The training focus is IM, Aerobic, and Race Pace training along with a strong emphasis on kicking. This level is also for those moderately advanced 13 and older athletes that swim seasonally and/or are multi-sport athletes. Swimmers must have the ability to handle the physical demands of an advanced training regimen to allow the opportunity to build and move to the next training level.

Expectations & Requirements:

  • A maintained minimum 60% Practice Attendance is required, including dryland strength-training sessions
  • Swimmers must complete & maintain USA Swimming’s Athlete Protection Training course certification
  • Morning Practices (listed on Level VI Schedules) are optional
  • Required parent/swimmer signed agreement: click HERE

Senior Level VI (14 & Older and in High School)

Level VI is designed for athletes 100% committed to the sport of swimming. Level VI is NOT designed for multi-sport athletes. Training is geared toward YMCA National/USA Sectional & Junior National Level competition and beyond. This practice level is only for athletes committed to reaching their full swimming potential and is not required for any swimmer. Year-round training and meet attendance are required. The emphasis is on high levels of endurance, strength, and speed conditioning with technique refinement. Training includes long and short distances, IM work, interval training, aerobic base development and preparation for a stronger emotional commitment.

Expectations & Requirements:

  • A maintained minimum 85% Practice Attendance is required, including morning practices & dryland strength-training sessions
  • Level VI Swimmers are expected to attend designated in-season competitions (SCY & LCM)
  • Level VI Swimmers are expected to attend and compete in all scheduled Championship meets for which they qualify, including USA Sectionals and YMCA Nationals
  • Swimmers must complete & maintain USA Swimming’s Athlete Protection Training course certification

Not meeting the minimum requirements will result in the swimmer being removed from this group.

Skills/Pre-Requisites Expected for Entrance Into This Group:

  • The physical conditioning required to maintain a rigorous training regimen
    • previous demonstration in Level V that the athlete can maintain the required practice attendance
  • Strong Proficiency in All 4 Strokes and All Turns
  • Possess High Performance Goals at the State and National Level
    • Level VI Swimmers need to have achieved, at minimum, USA Swimming “AA” Time Standards
  • Possess both a willingness and ability to provide leadership on a daily basis to the group and team
  • Required parent/swimmer signed agreement: click HERE