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Frequently Asked Swim Team Questions

(Version 2016.1)

GENERAL INFORMATION

Q) Where do I get information about the swim team?
Q) How do I know if my child can join the swim team?

Q) What is the swim team season schedule?
Q) What does my child need for practices and swim meets?
Q)  My child can't make it for practices or meets because we had made vacation plans earlier in the year. Is that OK?

PRACTICE INFORMATION

Q) When are swim team practices held?
Q) Are practices mandatory?
Q) When is the best time to ask a coach a question?
Q) How can I help my child improve their swimming?

MEET  INFORMATION

Q) What do all of the letters stand for (A Meet, B Meet, Division G)?
Q) This is the first swim meet for both my child and me. What do I do when we arrive at the pool for a meet?
Q) How do I know if my child will swim in an A Meet or a B Meet?
Q) My child's time in a race during last week's B Meet was faster than the qualifying times of the three children who were selected for that race in this week's A Meet. Why didn't my child get selected to swim in the A Meet on Saturday?
Q) How Are Meets Run?
Q) What are Time Trials?
Q) What is the Relay Carnival?
Q) What is the Divisional meet?

VOLUNTEER  INFORMATION

Q) How can I volunteer to help?



GENERAL INFORMATION

Q) Where do I get information about the swim team?

Besides this FAQ, and the website (http:// daleview.swimtopia.com), the team posts announcements through the Daleview_Feet listserv and the pool bulletin board. Schedules, lineups, departure times and other information will be posted there regularly.  

To subscribe to the Daleview_Feet listserv, send a message to: Daleview_feet-subscribe@yahoogroups.com.

Q) How do I know if my child can join the swim team?

Any boy or girl of a Daleview member family (including summer members) can join the Swim Team if he or she meets the age eligibility requirements (not older than 18 years old on June 1) and has at least minimal swimming skills.

Generally, if a swimmer can swim one length of the pool without touching the bottom or grabbing the side or lane ropes, he or she should be able to participate in swim team practices. If your child is water safe, between the ages of 5 and 7, and can swim 3/4 of the length of the pool, s/he is ready for Pre-team!

The coaches will evaluate new team members during the first week of practices of the season and then decide whether a child is ready for regular practices or should start the season on the developmental Pre-team. The coaches may recommend that the child take more swimming lessons before joining the team. Swimmers who may not initially qualify can ask the coaches to re-evaluate them at any time during the season.

Q) What is the swim team season schedule?

The swim team season runs from Memorial Day weekend through approximately the end of July. There are five Saturday morning meets, 4-6 Wednesday evening meets, a Relay Carnival that usually takes place on Sunday morning. The last weekend comprises of the Divisionals Meet and the Team Banquet. A typical summer season looks like this:

  • First all-team practice on the Saturday of Memorial Day Weekend
  • Afternoon practices on every weekday while Montgomery County Public School (MCPS) is in session
  • Time Trials on the last Saturday morning before last day of MCPS
  • Morning and afternoon practices every weekday after last day of MCPS through the end of the season (with exceptions)
  • Saturday or A Meet on the Saturday morning starting after last day of MCPS.
  • Wednesday or B Meets on Wednesday evenings
  • Relay Carnival on one Sunday morning
  • Divisionals Meet on Saturday morning at the end of July
  • End of season Team Banquet on the evening after the Divisionals Meet

We also do fun things besides swimming - movies outings, amusement park trips, pep rallies, team dinners, and pool bonding events.

Q) What does my child need for practices and swim meets?

A)  Your child should bring a swimsuit, cap, goggles, sunscreen and towel.  Having a water bottle and a hat are good ideas.  During Wednesday and Saturday Meets, most teams have snacks and beverages for sale.  These sales help raise money for the swim teams (both home and away) and your purchases are really appreciated.

Q)  My child can't make it for practices or meets because we had made vacation plans earlier in the year. Is that OK?

A)  Yes, however, please inform coaches of all known absences from meets well in advance. There are signup sheets on the swim team bulletin board at the pool where you can let the coaches know of the meets your child cannot attend. Empty swimming lanes cost points in competition and can cause the team to lose A Meet.

PRACTICE INFORMATION

Q) When are swim team practices held?

Between Memorial Day and the last day of MCPS, swim team practices are held on weekday afternoons grouped by age group. After the last day of public school, practices are held in the mornings and afternoon of every weekday with certain exceptions. All swimmers are welcome to attend both morning and afternoon practices. A typical practice schedule looks like this:

Weekdays from the Tuesday after Memorial Day until MCPS is out

Afternoon practice only

Time

Age Group

4:15 to 5:15 pm

13 and older

5:15 to 6:00 pm

9-12

6:00 to 6:45 pm

8 and under

Weekdays from MCPS is out until the end of the season
Morning practices, Monday through Thursday

Time

Age Group

7:45 to 9:00 am

11 and older

9:00 to 10:00 am

10 and under

Afternoon practices, Monday through Thursday

Time

Age Group

3:30 to 4:45 pm

11 and older

4:50 to 5:50 pm

10 and under

Friday morning Big Foot/Little Foot practices

Time

Age Group

8:00 to 9:00

11 and older

9:00 to 9:30

Lineups and Big Foot/Little
Foot practice

9:30 to 10:00

10 and under

The Pre-team practices Monday and Fridays from 6:00 pm to 6:30 pm. Pre-team practices focus on basic stroke work, rather than swimming laps.

Q) Are practices mandatory?

Yes! Although attendance is not taken, coaches do note who attends practice regularly, listen to instructions, and practice hard. Swimmers who practice with their club teams during the summer are encouraged to attend as many Daleview practices as possible.

Q) When is the best time to ask a coach a question?

The best time is before or after practice or by email. Please do not disturb coaches during practice or a Meet, as their undivided attention on the swimmers is necessary.

Q) How can I help my child improve their swimming?

Have your child attend practices as frequently as possible and make sure they listen to and follow the coaches’ instructions.

If swimmers would like to receive extra personalized work on a certain stroke, they are encouraged to arrange private lessons from the coaches. All coaches are available for lessons just about any time there is not a scheduled swim team practice.  To schedule and pay for private lessons please contact the coaches by email or talk with them at the pool.  Private lesson rates may vary by coach. Payment for lessons should be given directly to the coaches. Group lessons may be possible depending on availability of coaches and swimmers.

Outside of the summer swim team season, your child can join a Stroke and Turn Clinic (usually meets once a week) or a club team. If you are interested in swimming year-round, there are clubs for all levels of commitment and intensity. Some clubs that Daleview swimmers have joined include Rockville-Montgomery Swim Club (RMSC), Best Times Swim Club (BTSC), All-Star Aquatics (ASA), Machine Aquatics (MACH), DC-Wave (DCPR), and Silver Spring YMCA (YSS). You can find a complete list of area clubs at http://www.pvswim.org/pvs_club.htm.

MEET  INFORMATION

The Daleview Feet are one team.  We compete in A Meets, B Meets, Divisionals, and Relay Carnival as part of the Montgomery County Swim League (MCSL).  However, due to the number of swimmers on Daleview and on other MCSL teams, there are A Meets and B Meets during the swim season.  This allows all swimmers on a team to compete while keeping the length of the meets manageable. 

Q) What do all of the letters stand for (A Meet, B Meet, Division E)?

Typically the A Meets are for the top swimmers on the team as determined by the recorded times at time trials or swim meets during the year, though the final lineup is determined at the coaches’ discretion. The A Meets are competitions between teams based upon their standings in the MCSL and are swum against pools located all over Montgomery County.  All A Meets are held on Saturday mornings. 

B Meets are for all swimmers, though a swimmer who swam an event in the A meet cannot swim the same event in the B meet.  B Meets provide an opportunity for swimmers to improve their times and potentially make the A Meet lineup.  B Meets are held on Wednesday evenings at 6:00PM.  Generally swimmers must arrive by 5:00PM.

The Montgomery County Swim League (MCSL) is divided into 16 divisions (6 teams/division) based upon the times of the swimmers in the A Meets.  The teams with the top times are in A-Division and the teams with the collective slowest times are in O-Division.

Q)  This is the first swim meet for both my child and me. What do I do when we arrive at the pool for a meet?

A)  If the meet is a home meet, arrive 1 hour and 10 minutes before the meet begins to allow your child to properly warm up with the rest of the group. If the meet is an away meet, arrive 40 minutes prior to the beginning of the meet (check the listserv or bulletin board at the pool for the posted times).  Check-in with the coaches so they know that you are present.  Have your swimmer place their personal belongings in the designated team area.  If you have a younger swimmer, make certain they stay within the team area. 

Q) How do I know if my child will swim in an A Meet or a B Meet?

For the A Meet, the goal of the coach is to maximize the number of points scored by the team. Every week the A Meet lineup is determined at the coaches’ discretion, with a strong consideration of the fastest swimmers of each event in each age group. The following factors are taken into consideration:

  • Swimmer’s availability
  • Swimmer’s ability to swim a stroke legally
  • Swimmer’s seed times (fastest time swum by a swimmer during the current season)
  • Swimmer’s stamina
  • The strengths and weaknesses of the opposing team
  • Pre-scoring of the event – the coach’s prediction of the meet outcome based on the anticipated lineup
  • Any other factors relevant to the goal of maximizing the number of points scored by the team

The backstroke, breaststroke, and butterfly events have one heat and the three top swimmers for each team are entered. The freestyle events have two heats, therefore the top 6 swimmers in each age group are entered.   A Meet lineups will be emailed to the listserv and posted on the swim team bulletin board at the pool by Friday morning.

The maximum number of events any one swimmer can swim in an A Meet is 3 individual stroke events (three of the following: freestyle, backstroke, breaststroke, butterfly)  plus 2 other events (relays, individual medley), for a total of five events.

B meets are for swimmers who also wish to demonstrate their stroke improvement in races and enjoy competition against Daleview swimmers and other teams.  Everyone on the Daleview swim team is welcome to swim in B meets unless they swam in that event at an A Meet the week before.  

Q) My child's time in a race during last week's B Meet was faster than the qualifying times of the three children who were selected for that race in this week's A Meet. Why didn't my child get selected to swim in the A Meet on Saturday?

A)  There are a few reasons that this could happen.  First, when a swimmer is developing they can be inconsistent in individual events and have a high risk of getting disqualified at an A Meet. Second, while not typically the case, the stroke and turn judges can miss a call or be just a little more lenient in a B Meet when judging swimmers strokes.  The result being that a swimmer appears to be "legal" in a stroke when they are not.  In either case, the coaches are looking to see if a swimmer has developed a fairly dependable stroke when swimming with a time that would qualify them for an A Meet.  Finally, it is possible that the children who were selected had B Meet times this week that were faster than their previous qualifying times.  Since the B Meet times of the children are typically not published, you might not be aware of the new times of the other children.  Understanding that there needs to be some flexibility in how the roster selection process works due to these sorts of considerations, the official MCSL rules give the head coach the right to pick the swimmers that will swim at A Meets regardless of B Meet times.  Should a swimmer or family ever have a question about how this all works, please ask the team representatives.  A good conversation about how the process works can really help to get swimmers focused on improving their strokes, making it to A Meets on Saturdays and helping out their team with great times!  

Please feel free to approach the team reps if you have any concerns about the overall process.

Q) How Are Meets Run?

A Meets

There are 6 lanes in the pool for the meet. Each event has 3 swimmers from each team with the swimmers in the middle lanes being the fastest swimmers.

  • Meet sheets are created and given to the CLERK OF COURSE who sits in a designated area.
  • The swimmers who are swimming events check in with the Clerk of Course who provide their lane assignments.
  • Swimmers head over to the starting end of pool and go to their designated lane.
  • There are three TIMERS in each lane with stop watches who measure time it takes the swimmers to swim the designated distance in the prescribed stroke.
  • There are two STROKE AND JUDGES on either end of the pool to make sure the swimmers swim the strokes correctly. If a stroke is not swum correct, the judge will disqualify (DQ) the swimmer and note this on a DQ card.
  • There is a STARTER who starts each event and A Meet REFEREE who makes sure the meet is run correctly.
  • Swimmers times are recorded on time sheets and handed to the HEAD TIMER who then hands the time sheets to the RUNNER.
  • The Runner takes the time sheets to the automation table where AUTOMATION COORDINATOR and SCORER enters the times in the computer which calculates the swimmers times as well as team points. VERIFIERS check the times which are entered.
  • Award labels and printed out and placed on the ribbons to be given to the swimmers.
  • Times and rankings are posted on the bulletin board.

B Meets

B Meets are run in the same manner but team points are not calculated and generally, all swimmers receive a participation ribbon. B Meets are, for the most part, for swimmers who have shown that they can swim a stroke legally.

Q) What are Time Trials?

Time Trials are held the Saturday before the first A Meet. This is a team only event where all swimmers are timed in as many events as they wish to swim. Time Trials provide the coaches and swimmers with the best times for seeding purposes for the A Meets to come. It also provides the swimmers with personal goal setting for future events.

Q) What is the Relay Carnival?

The Relay Carnival is the divisional relay meet consisting of 22 events of boys, girls and mixed freestyle and medley events.  Mixed events are composed of two boys and two girls.  The relay carnival meet lineup is determined at the coaches’ discretion, with a strong consideration of the fastest swimmers of each event in each age group.  The first place relay carnival winners in each event except for the 175 M Freestyle events go to the All Star Relay Meet at the end of the season. 

Q) What is the Divisional meet?

The Divisional meet is the championship meet for the division.  The divisional meet lineup is determined at the coaches’ discretion, with a strong consideration of the fastest two swimmers of each event in each age group. 

 

VOLUNTEER  INFORMATION

Q) How can I volunteer to help?

It takes about 30 volunteers from our team to run each meet. There are many different ways you can volunteer.  Each dual meet needs 9 timers, plus a head timer. If you have timed for a year or more, you might be interested in taking the next step and training to be an official. We are always in need of Stroke and Turn officials, starters, and referees.  Training and certification for these positions are offered a number of times over the summer.  We need parents to help with team social activities, apparel sales, team banquet, and food coordination and sales during the meet. We also need families to donate food and drinks to sell at home meets. Each family should plan to volunteer at least three  (3) times during the season for each child they have on the swim team.  There is an online volunteer sign up (SignUpGenius) for all meets and swim team events that is distributed through the listserv.

Listed below are the descriptions of positions:

Announcer: Keeps the meet running by announcing what is happening, calling swimmers to the clerk of course, announcing swimmers prior to the event they are swimming, announcing any all-star times or pool records, as well as the final score.

Apparel Sales: Help sell the Swim Team Ware.

Automation: Computer operator who enters the swimmers times into the Meet Manager Program; prints the ribbon labels and posts results.

Banquet: Sets up and purchases decorations, tableware, food and drink for the end of the year celebration.

Clerk of Course: Checks in swimmers before they swim their event and instruct them as to which lane they will compete in.

Concessions: Prepares, cooks, and sells food and drink to the spectators and helps make money for the team.

Events Planner/Coordinator: Helps organize and assist any/all social activities.

Head Timer/Assistant Head Timer: Instructs timers at the start of the meet. Coordinates with the Referee to make the meet run efficiently. Runs several stopwatches for back up in case a lane timer’s watch doesn’t work. Collects time sheets to give to the runner.

Meet Set-Up: Helps set the stage for the home meets

Photographer: Takes pictures throughout the season that are viewed at the end of season banquet.

Referee: Head judge and official who presides over the meet ensures all rules and regulations are being enforced and followed. The Referee has final say on all deck issues (DQ’s, etc) –THIS POSITION REQUIRES CERTIFICATION

Runner: This position requires tennis shoes! Collects all time sheets and/or DQ’s from

the Head Timer and take them to the Automations table.

Starter: An official who has been trained to start each race using vocal cues and/or the

starter equipment. THIS POSITION REQUIRES CERTIFICATION

Stroke and Turn Judge: Watches 3 lanes of swimmers to make sure that strokes, turns and wall touches are done legally. This is great for people who want to really understand stroke mechanics. THIS POSITION REQUIRES CERTIFICATION

Timers: Assigned a lane and uses a stop watch to accurately document the time of the swim, from start to finish. Some people split meets with other volunteer. This is one of the most fun positions.

Verifier / Scorer: This person works with the Automation to enter the times into the computer and verify that the times are entered correctly; help post results, and puts labels on the ribbons.   

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News for 2017

Congrats to the Feet for a great season!  Next year we will be in division F.  Information about Winter Stroke and Turn at Piney Branch Pool with Coach Emily is on the Stroke and Turn tab.  Please check it out for specific dates and details!

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