SWIM:  Meet Information
Volunteers are key to the success of our swim team. Unlike other youth sports, where a handful of people can run the team, we simply cannot have a successful swim program without help from literally every swim parent. There are many opportunities to help. It takes more than 40 individuals to officiate, time, write ribbons and score a typical swim meet! Many of these meet responsibilities are described in more detail below.
Additionally, there are numerous other “behind the scenes” jobs, including both meet and non-meet related activities, such as running the concession stand, arranging social activities, and other non-swimming team activities. If you have any questions about volunteer opportunities, please contact Tom Edwards at email@example.com or by phone at 703-812-8059.
Swimmers are grouped for competition by gender and by age. The age categories are:
- 8 and under
- 9 -10
There also may be a 6 and under group at our Monday night developmental meets.
Swimmers compete at the age they are on the day of the meet. Swimmers compete in four individual strokes: freestyle, backstroke, breaststroke and butterfly. Freestyle and medley relays are swum at all dual meets. At certain designated meets, swimmers also may compete in individual medley (IM) events. Events for 8 and under swimmers are 25 meters (one length of the pool) and events for swimmers 9 and older are 50 meters, except that the 9-10 age group swims a 25-meter butterfly.
All meets are held as scheduled, rain or shine. The only exception is lightening at the host pool, which results in a delay. Directions to all the pools to which we will be traveling are linked from our Swim Team calendar on this site.
At the meet, swimmers need to know what events they are swimming and be ready when the event is called. Swimmers should stay in the team area during the meet, unless they receive a coach’s permission to leave the team area. If any swimmer needs to leave before the meet is over, they must tell the one of the coaches first. This is particularly important for A meets.
Our NVSL Meets (also referred to as A Meets) are held on Saturdays at 9 am and end at approximately 11:30 am. We may enter 3 swimmers per event. Our meet entries must be finalized by Wednesday so we can share our line-up with the other team on Thursday evening. After this occurs, we can only replace missing swimmers with a swimmer who has recorded a slower time in the event where the seeded swimmer is missing. We cannot swap swimmers among events to optimize our swim selections. Regular practice attendance is required to compete in the NVSL meets.
If a swimmer is not available for an A meet, please communicate this to the Team Rep or Coaches not later than than the Monday before that meet by filling out the online Swimmer and Parent Going away forms.
It is the responsibility of the swimmers (and parents) to know if they are in the A meet line-up and expected to swim (or officiate) on Saturday. Failure to notify the Team Rep or Coaches in writing in advance could result in an empty lane at the meet, could seriously handicap our team and would cause a teammate to miss the opportunity to swim in an A meet.
If a child is ill on the morning of an A meet, please call the Team Representatives at home by 7:00 am.
Time Trials will be held at the AFC Pool on Saturday, June 16, 2012. They are conducted like a normal meet except we will be the only team present! We hope that every swimmer will get timed in each stroke for their age group. This will provide base times for the Team Ladder/Personal Bests and help the Coaches seed swimmers for the first swim meet.
NVSL meets (also referred to as A meets) are held on Saturday mornings from 9:00 AM until approximately 11:30 AM. There are five of these meets, one against each team in NVSL Division 10. These are referred to as "dual meets," since there are two teams swimming against each other. Three of these meets will be held at AFC in 2012. A Division Champion will be determined based on the outcome of these dual meets. See the Swim Team Calendar for the details of our 2012 schedule.
Each team fields three swimmers per age and gender in the four individual strokes (freestyle, backstroke, breaststroke and butterfly). Relays are swum in each age group, plus one with mixed ages. NVSL rules allow swimmers to swim a maximum of two individual events, participate in one age-group relay team, and the mixed-age relay team if selected. Beginning with the youngest age group, boys swim first, and girls follow.
In order, the events swum are:
In Saturday A meets, the home team has lanes 1, 3, and 5 while the visiting team has lanes 2, 4, and 6. The fastest swimmers swim in lanes 3 and 4, the next fastest in lanes 1 and 2, and the next fastest in lanes 5 and 6. Swimmers are seeded based upon their fastest times attained in prior competition. Lane 1 is always on the right side as you stand facing the pool at the starting end.
|Age Group||Freestyle||Backstroke||Breaststroke||Butterfly||Freestyle Relay||Medley Relay||Breaststroke|
|8 & under Boys||25m||25m||25m||100m|
|8 & under Girls||25m||25m||25m||100m|
|Mixed Age Boys||200m|
|Mixed Age Girls||200m|
Dual meets are scored and the outcome of these meets determines a team’s division standing. Points are based on our swimmers’ performances in each event with the total points scored determining the winning team.
|Type of Race||1st place points||2nd place points||3rd place points|
In the event of a tie, the points for the places involved are equally split among the swimmers. For example, if there is a two-way tie for second place, each swimmer earns 2 points (3 points for second plus 1 point for third equals 4 points, half for each swimmer). No third place would be awarded because the next swimmer is fourth. For a third place tie, each swimmer is awarded 1/2 point.
The scores are announced periodically throughout the meet. There are 402 points up for grabs in a Saturday meet. Unless there is one or more places not awarded in an event due to DQs or lack of swimmers, you need 202 points to win.
Ribbons are always awarded for 1st through 3rd place finishes and the teams in the Division may agree before the start of the season also to award ribbons for 4th through 6th place finishes. Ribbons record the swimmer’s time, event and age group on the back.
At the completion of the dual meet season, the NVSL awards a trophy to the team with the best won-loss record in each division.
Swimmers are selected for dual meets by the coaching staff. There are several criteria, which are evaluated by the coaching staff. Each week, we swim a new team with different strengths and weaknesses. Since our goal is to win the meet, we need to try and match up our swimmers with those of our new opponent as best we can.
The Head Coach is responsible for developing the "meet sheet" each week for the following Saturday's dual meet. Our opponent’s previous meet sheets are reviewed, and swimmers are placed in strokes where they will score the most points for the team. Creating a good (translation: winning) meet sheet is a little bit like trying to put together a new complicated puzzle each week. This may mean that the coach will have a swimmer swim in an older age group event (referred to as “swimming up”) or swim a stroke that is not their strongest or favorite. Swimmers (and their parents) need to understand that coaching decisions are made for the benefit of the team as a whole. All decisions of the Head Coach regarding swimmer assignments are FINAL; parents and swimmers alike are requested to support these decisions.
Meet sheets are posted at the pool on Thursday evening, and the list of swimmers that will be swimming at the upcoming dual meet is distributed by e-mail during the week before the meet. Swimmers should check the meet sheet so that they know their assignments. Please bring any issues regarding meet sheets to the attention of the Head Coach or Team Rep as soon as possible.
Event assignments may change weekly, as we match ourselves up against a new team with different strengths. Swimmers who participate in one dual meet are not guaranteed the same slot the next Saturday.
Developmental Meets (also referred to as "B" Meets) are usually held on Monday evenings starting at 6:00 p.m. The last B Meet of the season, the Holy Mackerel Invitational, is on Wednesday, July 25 at Arlington Knights of Columbus Pool. B Meets typically end around 9 p.m. There are six of these meets in 2011. Three are at AFC. The same format and rules used for A Meets apply, except that there may be an additional 6 & under age group category for freestyle and backstroke, and butterfly may be added for 8 & under swimmers. Relays are not included in these meets.
Individual Medleys (IMs) are swum at most of the developmental meets. This requires the swimmer to swim one length of the pool using each stroke in the order of butterfly, backstroke, breaststroke, and freestyle. As this event is included in the NVSL Divisional Individual Championships, swimmers are encouraged to compete in this event as often as possible. All swimmers nine and older are eligible to swim in this event. Swimmers younger than nine may swim with a coach's consent. Since there is not a separate age group designation, those swimmers 8 and under who wish to do an IM must “swim-up” with the 9-10 year olds.
Developmental meets are not scored and do not affect our standings in Division 10. However, they are a crucial component of our summer swim program because they allow our swimmers opportunities to improve their individual times in events. The format is essentially the same as a Saturday meet, except that there are generally multiple heats of each age group event. Ribbons are awarded to all participants. If a swimmer is disqualified or is swimming unofficially, a participant ribbon is awarded. Ribbons record the swimmer’s time, event and age group on the back.
The Head Coach will establish the rules for swimmer eligibility for the developmental “B” meets.
Sign ups for the B meet typically occur the previous Sunday during the Ice Cream Social, so that entries for the meet can be prepared that night. Sign ups may also take place during Monday morning practice, but there is no guarantee that these late entries will be accommodated (plus there won't be any delicious ice cream!).
There are NVSL rules for attire at meets. Only the team suit or a plain suit is permitted. No school, club, or other organization attire may be worn. Caps must be plain or the team cap. No NVSL caps may be worn except at special meets as indicated on the cap. For example, it is only acceptable to wear the NVSL All Star Relay cap at All Star Relays. If swimmers are using goggles, they should have two pair in case one is lost or breaks.