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SWIM TEAM HANDBOOK

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Welcome!

The Cary Swim Club Swim Team Operations Committee welcomes you to the home of the Imps! If you are a returning team family, we’re glad to have you back. If you are new to the team, we look forward to getting to know you and your swimmers. Our goal is that this handbook will contain all of the information that you will need in order to participate on the team, but please feel free to contact anyone on the swim team committee regarding any questions or concerns that you may have. 

Cary Swim Club Swim Team is a member of the Tarheel Swimming Association

www.TSANC.org

The Tarheel Swimming Association (TSA) was created in 1971 to “promote and encourage competitive and recreational summer swimming for Wake County youth.” It now consists of over 80 swim clubs in the greater Wake County area. Clubs are placed in divisions based upon years of membership, size of team and geographic location within Wake County. The leagues and scheduling committee strives to group teams with other teams of equal strength. Three of our meets will be within in our division and the other three will be out of our division, adding some interesting competition. Our swim meets follow TSA rules for swimming meet management, judging and etcetera.  

Eligibility

Swim team membership is open to any member of the Cary Swim Club who is at least 4 years of age by June 1 and who has not reached their 19th birthday as of June 1 of the current swim season year. Swimmers must be able to complete distance requirements for their age group in order to participate in swim meets. Children aged six and under must be able to swim 15 yards unassisted in order to participate either on swim team or our developmental program, Sunfish, placement is determined by coaches. Swimmers seven and older who do not qualify will be encouraged to sign up for group or individual swim lessons. 

SUNFISH

Parents who want their child to have a swim team experience but are not ready for the 6 and under group may want to try Sunfish. Sunfish is a group especially for swimmers ages 4-6, who can swim 15 yards unassisted and are comfortable in the water. Evaluations will take place after the first week of practice. The head coach will determine if it is safe for your child to participate in the sunfish program versus take regular swim lessons, versus the regular swim team. The goal is to swim in a meet by the end of the season. Work session requirements, do not apply.

REGULAR SEASON MEETS

The TSA competitive summer swim season consists of six dual swim meets, split evenly into three home meets and three away meets. Away swim meets will require personal transportation. All six meets will be held on Tuesday evenings, weather permitting.  In the event of inclimate weather the meet will be held on Wednesday, unless mutually agreed upon by the two teams. All swimmers and parents who have signed up to volunteer are expected to participate on all make up days. Refer to
“Swim Meet Tips for Swimmers and their parents” located near the end of the handbook for more information.

SPECIAL MEETS

Green and White meet (time trials/practice meet)

The Green and White Meet will typically be held the Tuesday before the first regular meet.  This meet has several purposes.  It provides an opportunity for new swimmers to experience swim meet conditions and provides the coaches with timing data so that swimmers can be placed in the appropriate heats for the first official swim meet.  It also gives parents an opportunity to see their child’s progress, to encourage and support the team, and to familiarize themselves with the volunteer positions needed for each swim meet prior to an official meet as well as make new friends.

 Cary City Invitational Meet

All swimmers are expected to participate in the Cary City Invitational Swim Meet.  The meet is typically held on the Saturday prior to the last dual meet.  This meet is a competition featuring most TSA Southern League swim teams at one pool.  This is an open meet, which means that any registered swimmer may sign up to participate.  It is also a very long competition: the meet lasts the entire day, with 10-and-under swimmers competing in the morning session and 11-and-up swimmers competing in the afternoon. A tent will be set up for the Cary Swim Club Swim Team and you will need to bring the necessary items for a normal swim meet, plus sunscreen, snacks and anything that will make your stay more comfortable. This meet is an opportunity for your swimmer to compete against other swimmers throughout the area. It’s great fun to see friends from other clubs. Please note that if your child will be participating, you are responsible for volunteering to help in some capacity at the meet outside of your regular swim team obligations. Look for volunteer opportunities on the web site and club bulletin boards. 

 COMMUNICATIONS

Information of interest to swim team families will be distributed via one or more of the following channels:   the team bulletin board, the team web site: www.cscswimteam.swimtopia.com or the club website: www.caryswimclub.org, Twitter and family folders.

 Join Twitter!

It is especially useful for announcing late-breaking news such as weather-related cancellations. Practice and Pool Delays/Cancellations as well as meet delays or cancellations are posted to Twitter.

 The Swim Team Bulletin Board is located on the wall inside the club house. Information regarding major team events will be prominently displayed on this bulletin board.

Please get in the habit of checking the website frequently and especially the Mondays before meets as well as meet day for the most up to date information. This is also where our Head Coach will post psyche information for upcoming meets and other important swim team information.

 Fast Trac Is the official CSC swim team weekly newsletter. It is published and posted to the web site Swim coaches,  TSA reps and swim team parent volunteer coordinators post meaningful information as well as highlights from the swim meet but anyone may submit information for publishing that is related to the swim team to the editor in chief..

SWIM SUITS and Apparel

A team suit has been selected for uniformity. Although a team suit is not required, purchasing it is one way that we can show team spirit and it creates an exciting atmosphere at the meets as we cheer on our team.   Please keep in mind that a suit will not last as long as you may like if it is worn to the pool frequently, so please consider using other suits for practices and saving the team suit for use in meets. Team suits and other apparel are available for purchase via the team website.

SWIM TEAM ACTIVITIES for SWIMMERS and COACHES

Fun team building activities are held throughout the summer swim team session. Coaches attend the activities. Activities will be scheduled by the coordinators and will alternate day, evening and weekend to accommodate swimmers that are in year round school.

PASTA PUMP UPS!

Pasta Pump Ups have become a tradition at CSC. Join your fellow swimmers, coaches and swim team families in a nutritious and tasty pasta dinner. The format for the Pasta Pump Ups is POT LUCK.  All families are asked to contribute. Look for the sign up on the schedule on the swim team website. 

FAMILY FUN SWIM TEAM ACTIVITIES

Sometimes you just want to hang out at the pool with your swim team friends and family. At CSC we do this A LOT! Come and join us on movies nights, pot luck dinners, SWIM TEAM MOM’S NIGHT OUT and SWIM TEAM DAD’S NIGHT

OUT. Look for the events/dates on the website calendar and posted on the swim team bulletin board. 

FUNDRAISING

CSC swim team is a self- sufficient team. Currently there are team sponsors.  Additional monies to support the team are raised through concessions and bake sales at meets. PLEASE SUPPORT CSC SWIM TEAM by purchasing food, snacks and raffle tickets. If anyone has a fundraising idea, please speak up! 

END-OF-SEASON AWARDS CELEBRATION

Look for details on the website and bulletin board. The celebration features dinner, awards, guest speakers, a slide show and one last splash in the pool as a team.

Photos are needed for the slide show. Please send pictures as soon as you take them to the slide show coordinator whose name is posted on the web site.

 AWARDS AND RECOGNITION  

  1. SWIM TEAM PARTICIPANT TROPHIES– Given to all swimmers who have participated. These will be awarded at the Swim Team Banquet at the end of the season. 
  1. MOST IMPROVED – Presented at the Swim Team Banquet to one boy and girl swimmer per age group who has shown much individual improvement over the summer. Chosen by the coaches. 
  1. HIGH POINT EARNERS –Given to the boy and girl in each age group who earned the most points in individual events over the course of the season’s six dual meets. 
  1. COACHES AWARD – Presented to one boy and one girl 10 & under and one boy and one girl 11 & over who have been especially cooperative and helpful to the coaches, tried his or her best, and displayed good sportsmanship and super attitude. 
  1. BILL JONES AWARD – Presented to one swimmer who has shown sportsmanship, good attitude, ability or improvement, and has been an asset to the Cary Swim Club. This award is in honor of Bill Jones, the first coach of the Cary Swim Club. 
  1. TEN YEAR AWARD - A CARY SWIM CLUB sweatshirt is awarded to swimmers that have participated for the Cary Swim Team for 10 years. 
  1. FIVE YEAR AWARD - A CARY SWIM Club towel is awarded to swimmers that have participated for the Cary Swim Team for 5 years. 
  1. FIFTEEN YEAR AWARD - As this is an extraordinary accomplishment CSC will award swimmers who have earned this distinction with a $100.00 scholarship. 

SWIM MEET TIPS FOR SWIMMERS AND THEIR PARENTS

We look forward to a great season. It is rewarding and fun to see our swimmers improve over the summer, make new friends and feel a sense of pride in their swim team. Let’s help make this a successful swimming season for our children. 

  • Swim meets start promptly at 6:00 pm and generally last until 9:00-10:30 pm. The 6 and under swimmers can leave after the breaststroke since they do not swim in the butterfly or relay events. As you leave the meet, please clean your area, whether at our pool or at a visiting pool. Clean-up is everyone’s responsibility. It only takes a few people to get the job done quickly.
  • Tuesday morning or Monday afternoon practice is required in order to swim in a main event. Exceptions may include an emergency, your child is at camp or you have an appointment. PLEASE inform the coaches of your absence. 
  • PLEASE let the coaches know prior to the meet IN WRITING (this includes email)o if you will miss a meet or will be coming late. IMPORTANT: if a meet is postponed from Tuesday to Wednesday (or another day), you are expected to support your team by swimming on the rescheduled date. If you cannot attend please let the coaches know. 
  • If a swim meet is postponed on Tuesday night, the meet will resume where it stopped and will be started on the following evening, at the same location and time, unless otherwise agreed upon by the TSA reps,(If the breaststroke event has been completed, the meet will be declared complete). Please let the coaches know if you cannot make the rescheduled Wednesday meet. Parents let the PARENT VOLUNTEER COORDINATOR of the meet know if you cannot fulfill your responsibilities on the rescheduled date. 
  • Swimmers should always be at the appropriate pool at the assigned time each Tuesday afternoon of a meet.Warm-ups for the home team begin at 5:00 pm and warm-ups for the visiting team begin at 5:30 pm. Although this arrangement is standard practice, it may be reversed for some meets.  Our coaches will inform you if there is a change.  In any case, swimmers should plan to be at the pool at least 30 minutes before our team’s designatedWarm-up time: 4:30PM for home meets and 5:00 PM for away meets. Please allow enough time to travel to away meets and consider carpooling with other families is possible as parking is usually an issue for most clubs. 
  • Each member of the team is assigned a unique swimmer number. These numbers make it easier for the timers to record times accurately. Please do not write swimmer numbers onto their arms before arrival to the meet as the numbers sometime change.

 Children swim the following distance depending on the design of the pool: 6 and under swimmers swim 15 yards marked by a rope, 7-10 year old swimmers swim 25 yards/25 meters, and 11 and older swimmers 50 yards/50 meters.

 You may want to portable chairs with you to both the home and away meets.  Some pools do not have enough pool furniture to accommodate all the attendees at a typical swim meet. 

  • Things that swimmers SHOULD BRING TO THE MEET:
  • Sweatshirt, sweatpants or warm jacket -- it gets chilly sitting around in a wet bathing suit
  • At least two towels; perhaps a blanket or extra towel to sit on
  • Goggles (helpful to have a spare)
  • Team Swim cap D Flip-flops or Crocs D Water bottle
  • Cards, games, etc. – meets are long and kids need something to help pass the time
  • Money for team concessions
  • Healthy snacks: Power bars, fruit, string cheese, goldfish

 Things that swimmers SHOULD NOT BRING TO THE MEET: electronic devices/games, MP3 players, etc., Not only do you risk losing these items but you can’t watch your team mates swim and you will miss out on exhibiting your TEAM SPIRIT! 

  • Label all of your children’s swim items.
  •  Encourage your swimmers to sit in the team area to build team unity.  This also allows those assisting the Clerk of Course to locate swimmers, thereby making the meet run more efficiently.
  • Please bear in mind that when we visit other pools, we are their guests, and we should behave accordingly.Likewise, when we have home meets, let’s all try to be polite and gracious hosts. Remember that all of us (swimmers, coaches and parents) are representatives of Cary Swim Club wherever we go.

  Please note that TSA rules prohibit smoking and consuming alcohol at any TSA swim meet. 

  • Swim meet concession sales are a major source of revenue for the swim team. Cary Swim Club will host the concession stand during the three home swim meets. Hot dogs, hamburgers, pizza, club sandwiches, Rita’s Italian Ice and other items will be available for sale. In addition a bake and snack sale is held all home meets. All families are asked to contribute items for the bake and snack sale. Healthy snacks such as fruit are always welcome! Concession volunteers are essential.

 Kid catchers are age’s ll and up. They are used for 6 and under swimmers. One to two catchers per lane are assigned by the coaches.

  •  Children swim the following strokes in the order listed below. Check the heat sheets that are posted on the back wall to see what lane and event they will swim in.  6 and under – free, back, breast (there is no fly for this age group). 7 and older- medley relay, free, back, breast, fly and free relay.

 Only the main event is scored and earns points toward winning a meet. Scoring for all events except relays are as follows:

                                First Place                          5 points

                                Second Place                     3 points

                                Third Place                          1 point

  • Only the first place relay team earns points. The winning team earns 5 points for their team.
  •  In case of ties, the points are split between those tying. For example, a tie for first place in an individual event gives 4 points to each of the swimmers tying. A tie on a relay splits the points between the two relay teams who tie.
  •  Although the main event is the only heat that scores points, all heats are important. The maximum number of main events for 6 and under swimmers is 2. The maximum number of main events for 7 and older swimmers is 3.
  •  The medley relay begins the meet. The free relay ends the meet.
  •  If a child is “DQ ‘d” (disqualified) he/she will not receive a place ribbon. If a child false starts twice, he/she will not be allowed to swim that stroke.
  •  Ribbons are awarded as follows:

              MAIN EVENT:                 First Place              Blue

                                                     Second Place         Red

                                                     Third Place              White

                                                     Fourth Place           Yellow

                                                     Fifth Place              Light Blue

                                                     Sixth Place             Pink

                                                     HEAT WINNERS:           host/team discretion

                                                     HEAT PARTICIPANTS:  host/team discretion

                                                     RELAYS:                     same as the Main Event

  •  Place ribbons can be picked-up at the pool in your family folder usually the day following the meet.
  •  Heat ribbons and participation ribbons will only be given to swimmers 10 and under.
  •  You can review your child’s times on the swim team website. This will let you can see their improvements as the summer progresses. Improving individual times are as important as the place the child takes. Be sure to encourage your child about the positive points of his/her swimming, rather than dwelling on weaknesses. 
  • Check the website frequently for team updates. 

 TIPS FOR AND EXPECTATIONS OF THE SWIMMERS

  • Practice – It is strongly recommended that swimmers attend at least one practice daily. Regular attendance is the key to improvement and overall success.  By joining this team, you have made a commitment that should not be broken.  The coaches understand there are other obligations, such as being involved with a year-round swim team, religious activities, academic requirements, family emergencies, sickness, job commitments, vacations, etc.

           Swimmers will not be penalized for any of these reasons; however they  are  encouraged to  attend as many practices as possible.

  •  Weekly meets – Please try to attend every meet. We depend on all of our swimmers each week. It is preferable that you stay for the entire meet to support your team. If you must leave a swim meet early, please see the coach before you leave to determine if you are needed for a relay team. Remember, if you are unable to attend a meet, please let the coaches know, in writing, as soon as you can.
  •  Eating habits – Monday night supper should be high in carbohydrates, such as meat and potatoes, spaghetti, macaroni and other pasta and wheat dishes. Tuesday evening supper should be light and healthy. Snacks eaten during the meet should be light, such as fruit, crackers, popsicles and juice. Juice or water is the drink of choice. Carbonated drinks are strongly discouraged. 
  • Team Spirit: One of our goals is to really show that the Cary Swim Team has SPIRIT!!! Always keep good sportsmanship in your mind, whether we win or lose.
  •  Rest after a meet- Wednesday mornings rest and relax. There will be no practice. We may have a planned activity for the morning. Watch website for details. 
  • Listen, Listen, Listen!!! This means when a coach is speaking, all swimmers must stay quiet and remain courteous at all times. 
  • Be on time. Early is on time, on time is late. Swimmers, please arrive at least 15 minutes before practice starts to stretch out and prepare to enter the pool.  For example, if practice starts at 9 a.m., arrive at 8:45 a.m. and be ready to swim at 9 a.m.  A 9 a.m. practice time does not mean you should wait until 9:00 to show up. 
  • Be Respectful. Swimmers must respect their teammates, other teams, other pools and their coaches. Being disrespectful to anyone is not tolerated!  If a swimmer is being disrespectful he or she will be issued a warning.  If it continues, further disciplinary action may be required. 
  • Stay motivated and positive. An excellent attitude leads to excellent swimming. The coaches will do everything to make sure the team remains positive at all times. In addition, coaches expect all swimmers to motivate each other and display leadership to one another. 
  • Have Fun!!! In order to have fun, you need to fulfill all the expectations previously mentioned. If you come to practice (on time), show respect, stay positive, always give over 100% at practice and meets and swim with good habits, it is guaranteed you will have fun. You will be rewarded with fast times if all of our expectations are met. 

 TIPS FOR AND EXPECTATIONS OF THE PARENTS

To have a successful program there must be understanding and cooperation among parents, swimmers, and coaches. The fun your children have and the progress they make depends to a great extent on this triangular relationship. It is with this in mind that we ask you to read and pledge your agreement to the following parent guidelines. These guidelines will help you keep your child's development in the proper perspective and help your child reach his/her full potential as a swimmer, while having fun! 

  1. 1.   The Coach is the Coach!  When parents interfere with opinions as to how the swimmer should swim or train, it causes considerable, and oftentimes insurmountable, confusion.  If you have a problem, concern, or complaint, please contact a member of the Swim Team Committee, and refrain from complaining to other parents. If you must talk to the coach regarding your child, please do so before or after practice, not during practice and especially not during a meet. 
  1. 2.  The Coaches and only the Coaches decide lineups and swimmer positions for meets. Many factors go into deciding meet line ups, including but not limited to: swimmer times; practice attendance; attitude; and team morale. None of these factors has precedence; rather it is the whole package that determines swimmer placement. 

       3.  The Coaches need to run practices. All swimmers will benefit if the coaches can run practices without external interruptions.  Some of the youngest swimmers may easily become distracted by the presence of their parents, so be prepared to move a little farther away from the action if your child is constantly doing things that interrupt his or her focus on the team practice.  Examples of this behavior include frequently leaving the pool to seek parental comforting, trying to draw mom or dad into the water to assist the child, or simply horsing around to seek attention.  Please give the coaches the first opportunity to handle any such misbehavior; they will not hesitate to ask you for additional help if they need it.

  The Ten Commandments for Parents of Athletic Children

             Edited and reprinted from The Young Athlete by Bill Burgess

 

I.

Make sure your child knows that -- win or lose, scared or heroic -- you love him/her, appreciate their efforts, and are not disappointed in them.

 

2

Try your best to be completely honest about your child’s athletic ability, his/her competitive attitude, their sportsmanship, and their actual skill level.

 

3

Be helpful, but don’t coach him/her on the way to the pool or on the way back, or at breakfast, and so on. It’s tough not to, but it’s a lot tougher for the child to be inundated with advice, pep talks and often critical instruction.

 

4

Teach them to enjoy the thrill of competition, to be "out there trying," to be working to improve his/her swimming skills and attitudes. Help him/her to develop the feel for competing, for trying hard, for having fun.

5

Try not to relive your athletic life through your child.

6

Don’t compete with the coach.

 

7

Don’t compare the skill, courage, or attitudes of your child with other members of the team, at least within his/her hearing.

 

8

Get to know the coach so that you can be assured that his/her philosophy, attitudes, ethics, and knowledge are such that you are happy to have your child under his/her leadership.

 

9

Always remember that children tend to exaggerate, both when praised and when criticized. Temper your reaction and investigate before over-reacting.

 

10

Make a point of understanding courage, and the fact that it is relative. Explain that courage is not the absence of fear, but a means of doing something in spite of fear of discomfort.

  CARY SWIM TEAM ONE FOR ALL, ALL FOR ONE!

Your child is a member of Cary Swim Team. The traits of team responsibility, pride, and sportsmanship are developed or will develop, but in the final analysis, swimming is an individual sport where swimmers individually work to improve techniques, starts, turns, and times. 

The goal of the swim team is to have open communication between the coaches, promote a team spirit among our swimmers, and have parents taking an active part in doing their share to run our meets effectively. 

The crucial part of every meet is having enough people to work. To ensure that our meets are covered and the responsibility is taken by all, the team has changed to a point system and each family is REQUIRED to score 12 points by the end of the season, (the Green and White meet does not score points). It will be your responsibility to find someone to work your position if you cannot fulfill your obligation for a particular meet. A Swim Team Directory is available on the team website.  Failure to work at the meets can lead to dismissal of the swimmer (s) from the team. There is a description of each job responsibility and how many workers are needed to fill that position on the team website where the schedule is posted.

  

“MEET THE CHALLENGE” VOLUNTEER JOB DESCRIPTIONS

SCORERS                                   Records place finishes and disqualification slips from the event

Home – 2 volunteers           and scores on the score sheet. (Work half the meet)

Away – 2 volunteers

RECORDER                              Records place finishes and winning time on event slip from place

Home – 1                         judge positions and can adjust for disqualification. (Work whole meet – main event only)

6TH PLACE JUDGE                   Stands in sixth place finisher’s lane. (Whole meet- main event only) Away – 1

5TH PLACE JUDGE                   Stands in fifth place finisher’s lane. (Whole meet – main event only) Home – 1

4TH PLACE JUDGE                   Stands in fourth place finisher’s lane. Also, judges second place

Away – 1                           for the second relay when two events are combined. (Whole meet- main event only)

3RD PLACE JUDGE                   Stands in third place finisher’s lane. Also, judges second place

Home – 1                           for the first relay when two events are combined. (Whole meet – main event only)

2ND PLACE JUDGE                   Stands in second place finisher’s lane. Also, judges first place

Away – 1                            and obtains finish time for the second relay when two events are combined. (Whole meet

– main event only)

1ST PLACE JUDGE                   Stands in first place finisher’s lane and obtains the finish time for Home- 1                            first place.  (Whole meet- main event only)

STARTER                                 Starts each event with an appropriate starting device. (Half meet)

Home 2                        1. Asks whether judges and timers are ready.

                                      2. Announces gender, distance and stroke

                                      3. Directs swimmer to  “Take your mark.”

                                      4. Pauses to ensure no early start

                                      5. Gives starting signal and calls false start if needed.

ANNOUNCER                           Calls swimmers to the clerk of course for each events.

Home - 1                         Announces scores. (Whole meet)

RUNNERS                                Goes from each stroke and turn judge (2) to the recorder with

Home – 6                        disqualification slips. Two other runners alternate from the recorder to

                                      the scorers with event slips from place recorder and any disqualification

                                       slips. (Half meet)

KID PUSHERS                         One pusher for girls of each age group (6 and unders, 7-8 and 9-10)

                                       and one for boys for the same age groups from each team find,

                                       assemble and deliver the swimmers  to the clerk of course benches when

                                       the announcers call the event. Kid pusher parent  remains at the clerk of

                                       course to assist the clerk of course in setting up the swimmers in event

                                       order on the benches in the lane positions until dismissed by the clerk of

                                        course. (Whole meet).

CLERK OF COURSE                 Get swimmers to proper starting blocks for their events and get

Home – 2                          event slips to the recorder.

Away –  2                                 

RIBBON WRITERS                    Complete award ribbons. (Half meet) Home – 4

Away - 4

TSA REPRESENTATIVE           Represents the swim clubs on the TSA board of directors.

                                        Works as the representative of TSA at the season’s dual meets.

                                        Resolves or takes to the TSA board any events of question. Leads the

                                        official meeting before each of the home dual meets.

STROKE AND TURN                 Judges whether proper stroke, turn, start and finish are executed by the

JUDGE                                        swimmers during the meet. (Half meet)

Home – 2                         2 S&T judges can be used for the medley relay if agreed upon by  

                                       opposing team. Away - 2

  

TIMERS                                    Time the swimmer in each lane and write the time on the list.

Home - 16                       There are two timers in each lane. (Half meet) Away -  16

RIBBON DISTRIBUTORS        Hand out ribbons to the heat winners and participant ribbons to the 10

                                         and under’s only. (Half meet)

Home – 6                                

CLEAN UP CREW                     Help get lane ropes put up, deck chairs out for next day and trash out to

                                       the curb.

FOR AFTER HOME                   (Considered half meet position)

MEETS4

BANQUET HELPERS – 10       Help banquet coordinator plan and carry out the banquet. This includes

                                         assembling and setting up of the decorations, clearing the pool deck

                                         and setting up and taking down of tables and chairs, serving food,

                                         cleaning up afterwards. (considered half meet position)

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