Helpful Tips for a Happy Swimmer
- Attend as many practices as possible. Swimming is a strength sport; the more practice your child gets in, the better swimmer they will become.
- Don’t judge or compare your child to other swimmers. Healthy competition is great and should be encouraged but not to the detriment of their own efforts.
- Cheer for all the swimmers from all the age groups. Reinforce that your swimmer is part of a team.
- Cheer them on. Let your swimmer know you are happy to be there watching and that win or lose you are proud of them.
You are a role model. Your child is watching you. How you react and behave at the meets is how your child will learn to react and behave as well. Be a great teacher.
The coaches will assign each swimmer a buddy. The idea behind buddies is that the swimmers will meet other swimmers whom they may or may not have had the opportunity to befriend. Buddies are usually selected from extreme age groups so that very young swimmers are paired with swimmers from older age groups. Buddies will do different supportive things for each other during the meets and championships. It’s important the parents provide encouragement for the buddy system. A swimmer who is neglected by their buddy is an unhappy swimmer.
Some SAAA Rules
This is by no means a comprehensive list of the SAAA rules. For complete information you may visit the web site www.saaa.org or ask one of the coaches to see a rules book.
For Dual Meets:
- A swimmer may swim 3 individual events and 2 relays per meet.
- Points at a dual meet are awarded for first through third place (5-3-1) in individual races and relays score first and second place (7-3). Each team can only score once in a relay. Points are awarded for the first heat only. Swimmers in additional heats will be awarded ribbons but not score points for the overall team point total.
- Swimmers may “swim up” in age group in dual meets but may not swim up in championships.
- Swimmers 8 years and younger swim 25 yards (one length) and all other ages swim 50 yards (2 lengths) per race.
- The order of events is the Medley Relay, Butterfly, Backstroke, Breaststroke, Freestyle, and the Free Relay. 6 and Under exhibition backstroke and freestyle often vary where they are fitted into the schedule. Some teams rearrange these events to accommodate letting these younger swimmers leave early. 6 and Under swimmers may or may not swim in relays.
- The order of swimmers in relays is Backstroke, Breaststroke, Butterfly, and Freestyle. The order of the IM (Individual Medley) is Butterfly, Backstroke, Breaststroke, and Freestyle. The IM is available at the invitationals only.
- At invitationals, swimmers may swim in all four individual events.
- No swimmer can swim in a meet until their paperwork is officially stamped and returned to the coaches. Coaches are required to have this paperwork on deck at all times.
- A swimmer must compete in three official meets (individual events) to be eligible for the championship meet. This can include three dual meets or two dual meets and one invitational.
- Swimmers may not switch lanes during any race- during individual and relay races, all swimmers must remain in the lane in which they begin.
- Code of Conduct– swimmers, coaches, officials, and parents must behave in a respectful, appropriate, responsible, and safe manner at all SAAA events. This code of conduct includes language as well as actions. Alcoholic beverages are not permitted at SAAA sanctioned events.