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Team Handbook


The Mantua Swim Team is a member of the Northern Virginia Swimming League (NVSL) which was founded in 1956, both to sponsor competitive swimming and diving between community pools and to foster a love for the sport, advanced aquatic skills, teamwork, sportsmanship. Currently there are 102 teams divided into 17 divisions in the league. Each year, teams are seeded into appropriately competitive divisions as determined by the NVSL. “A” meets are swum against the other teams in our division, which changes each year. Our developmental league is currently comprised of teams from Villa Aquatic, Greenbriar, Dunn Loring, Pincrest, and Lakevale Estates. “B” meets are developmental meets swum with these teams each year. The Mantua Board Member for Swim Team Activities (AKA Swim Team Representative) supervises all Mantua Swim Team programs. The coaching staff receives guidance and direction from the Team Reps.


All family members of pool members and summer renters that are eighteen years of age and younger are eligible to join the swim team. Once a swimmer can swim 25 meters (one pool length), without stopping and without fins, in one legal stroke, he/she may participate in swim meets.


Registration fees (subject to change) are currently $140 per swimmer with a $350 cap (2019) for three or more swimmers in the same family. The fee covers toward insurance, JCC lane rental (if applicable), supplies, equipment, awards, and some social activities. In addition, the registration fee covers the cost of a T-Shirt and swim cap for each swimmer. This fee will be collected at the time of registration. If a child elects not to participate, full refunds will be given until the Wednesday following time trials.

Swim Suits and Gear

All Swimmers require a swimsuit, goggles and fins to participate. Team suits are encouraged but not mandatory for competition. Unfortunately, the same swimsuit style is not necessarily available from year to year. So each year, a new team suit may be selected. A recommended strategy is to use this year’s new team suit for swim meets, and use previous years’ suits for practice.

Goggles, fins and practice caps can be whatever type the swimmer prefers. Swimmers should have these items by the first scheduled practice. Wearing a team cap (provided) at the meets is mandatory for girls and highly recommended for boys. Swimmers are not permitted to compete in swim caps that include the name or insignia of any team other than their NVSL team, in any NVSL competition.

Team suits, goggles and fins can be purchased through Sport Fair during our season kickoff event and at our Time Trials meet. If you prefer to go to the store, located on Lee Highway in Arlington, (phone number is 703-524-9500), be sure to tell them that you are with the Mantua Marlins team so they can ensure that you purchase the correct suit, at the correct price.

Spirit wear is also available, for order, during our season kickoff event. Typically available are T-shirts, sweatshirts, shorts, pajama pants, lacrosse jerseys and car magnets. Samples will usually be available.


Prior to the end of school, consult the team calendar on the team website for the practice schedule. When school is out and until the end of the season, practices will be at Mantua on the following schedule:

Monday - Thursday: Friday

13 & above 7:30 – 8:45 a.m. 7:30-10:00 a.m.

11-12 year olds 8:45 – 9:30 a.m. 8:30-10:00 a.m.

9-10 year olds 9:30 – 10:15 a.m. 8:30-10:00 a.m.

8 & under 10:15 – 11:00 a.m. 9:00-10:00 a.m.

Tuesday & Thursday Evening Practice (Beg. the first full week after school is out)

All age groups 6:00 - 7:00 p.m.

All swimmers are expected to attend practice. Regular practice enables swimmers to reach their potential, and impacts their ability to swim in meets. Year round swimmers participating in USS programs should still attend at least one Marlin practice per week. Swimmers are expected to practice with their age group. This is especially important for relay teams in order to build team spirit. If a swimmer needs to switch practice time, he/she must first get approval from a head coach. Summer swimming is a team sport, and we count on everyone’s participation. If a swimmer will not be at a Friday practice, make sure to check with the coaching staff to see if that swimmer is entered in Saturday’s meet.

Swimmers are expected to come to practice on time and prepared – with suit on, and with goggles, fins, cap, towel and water bottle. During practice, older swimmers should conduct themselves in a manner that sets an appropriate example for the younger swimmers.

Parents/guardians of 12 and under swimmers must remain at the pool during the entire time that the 12 and under swimmer is in the pool or its surrounding areas. Swimmers should not be dropped off earlier than 15 minutes prior to the start of their practice, and should be picked up promptly once their practice, clinics or planned activities have concluded. The coaches are busy coaching the next age group, and there are no lifeguards on duty prior to the pool opening each day to be responsible for your child’s safety. The baby pool will be closed during practice for safety reasons. 

If you need to discuss anything with the coaches one on one, please make arrangements to do so after all practices have finished for the day. Every swimmer on the team deserves the undivided attention of the coaching staff during practices. The staff and team reps understand your need to see how your child is progressing, but please do so from afar. We must insist that there will be no parents on the pool deck during practices. Team Reps are typically available to discuss your concerns at this time.

Mini Marlin Program

The purpose of the Mini Marlin program is to work with young children who have already had water safety training or “learn to swim” lessons and have a strong desire to learn how to improve their strokes, participate in meets, and move up to the Marlins Swim Team.

Generally, Mini Marlins should be 5-6 years old, mature enough to work in a group situation, comfortable in water over their heads, but unable to swim a legal stroke across the pool (25 meters).  All new registrants to the Mini Marlin program must attend a pre-season evaluation session to determine their readiness for the program and skill levels for group placement. This evaluation is usually done after school, on a day in mid June.

This program is not meant to replace swim lessons. The lessons offer smaller groups and practice in the shallow end of the main pool, as opposed to the Mini Marlins that practice in the upper pool with no shallow end. Information about swim lessons is available in the pool office and from the lifeguard staff. All of our Assistant Coaches also offer private lessons that can be arranged at your convenience.

Mini Marlins usually start practice the week after school ends, and the program continues through July. Practice is held on Monday, Wednesday, & Friday from 10:15 - 11:00 a.m. in the upper pool. Please see the team calendar on the team website for specific dates. When, at any point during the season, the coaches feel a child is ready for competition, he/she will be asked to enter a developmental B meet. In addition to their own social activities, the Mini’s conclude their season with the Lollipop Meet, in which all Mini’s are invited to participate.

The registration fee is $110 per swimmer for the season. A free T-shirt is provided to all Mini Marlins at the beginning of the season. Team suits are not required, and goggles are optional but strongly suggested. Swim fins ARE required and can be purchased during our team gear sales.

Private Lessons and Clinics

Our Assistant Coaches offer private lessons and stroke technique clinics throughout the season. Swimmers of all ages and abilities are encouraged to participate when extra practice and coaching is desired. Rates are reasonable and sessions can be tailored to your individual child’s needs. Private lessons offer the perfect opportunity to enhance your swimmer’s skills and make this summer job rewarding for our coaches. Please sign-up directly with the Assistant Coaches on deck after practice.


The Mantua Marlins will participate in the following swim meets each season:

1 practice/time trials meet

5 NVSL “A” meets

4 Developmental “B” meets

1 NVSL Divisional Relay Carnival

1 Developmental “B” Relay Carnival

1 Developmental IM Carnival

1 All Star Relay Carnival

1 Divisional meet

1 All Star Individual Championship meet

Practice Meet/Time Trials: This meet will be held at Mantua on a Saturday, in mid June, usually at 9:00 a.m. Its purpose is to familiarize swimmers and officials with the way meets are conducted and what official duties require. At this meet, each swimmer’s baseline times for the beginning of the season are established. No places are recorded and no ribbons are awarded. Swimmers are encouraged, but not required, to swim all four stokes at this meet. Mini Marlins do not normally participate. Parent participation is necessary as it takes approximately 85 volunteer adults to run time trials! This is the perfect time to refresh old skills or get hands-on experience at a new job before the competitive season begins.

Northern VA Swim League (NVSL) A Meets: These Saturday morning meets consist of 52 events, start at 9:00 a.m., and last to around noon (please see Appendix B for swim meet time tables). There are 40 individual events and 12 relays. Boys and girls compete separately in five distinct age groups (8 & under, 9-10, 11-12, 13-14, 15+). Each age group swims freestyle, backstroke, breaststroke, and butterfly. There are freestyle and medley relays for each age group, plus a boys and a girls mixed age relay. Three swimmers in each age group, for each stroke, are selected to swim in “A” Meets. An individual swimmer may be selected to swim in a maximum of two individual events, one relay and the mixed age relay.

The coaches will select swimmers for each event using a seeding process based on the swimmer's past performance, official best times, and the opposing team's past performance. This is a subjective process driven by the need to maximize team points. What is best for the team as a whole is paramount in all coaching decisions. Do not make assumptions about whether or not your child will be swimming at a Saturday “A” meet! Occasionally, a swimmer may be asked to swim “up” in an age category older than that swimmer's actual age. A swimmer may also be asked to support the team by swimming a stroke or a relay event which he/she has not swum in a prior meet. Such support of the team needs is recognized by the team and its coaches.

Once an A meet line up is exchanged with the opposing team, the only substitutions allowed are with swimmers who have slower times. If you are unable to swim on any Saturday, please give the coaches as much notice as possible (preferably at least a week ahead of time). Note your vacation/camp schedule on the vacation poster at the pool (see a team rep for details) and keep the coaches and team reps informed of any changes to your plans: No-shows must be avoided. It is difficult to substitute for a no-show at the last minute. Advance notification gives another child the opportunity to swim.

“A” meets are scored, dual meets and are highly competitive and very exciting! Each team in the division wants to take home the division trophy! NVSL Meets are scored as follows:

1st Place 5 points

2nd Place 3 points

3rd Place 1 point

Winning Relay 5 points

Ribbons are awarded to each swimmer and the winning relay teams. Fourth through 6th place do not earn points or the team, but do earn individual place ribbons. Official times and scores are posted at the pool by 4:00 pm after an NVSL meet, and remain posted for at least 48 hours. For a complete list of all the rules that govern the NVSL meets, please refer to the NVSL Handbook that can be obtained from a Team Rep.

Developmental Meets: Developmental by design, these meets are where the majority of our swimmers compete. These meets are typically held on Monday evenings from 6 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. These meets serve as the training ground for swimmers to develop legal strokes, improve times, and enjoy the sport of swimming. Developmental meets provide a competitive swim meet for swimmers who have not had the opportunity to swim in Saturday “A” Meets. There is no seeding for these meets, the meets are not scored and times are not official NVSL times. However, “B” meets are refereed meets designed to provide competitive conditions similar to “A” Meets. Swimmers participating in a developmental “B” meet should select their events no later than the deadline for any given meet, typically the Friday before the meet. Sign up forms and reminders will be provided each week. Although “B” meets are not scored, they are every bit as loud and exciting as those on Saturday mornings. In addition to the individual events at a NVSL dual meet, “B” meets also have events for 6 & unders and a 100 meter Individual Medley for all age groups. There are no relay events at regular developmental meets. First through 6th place finishers are awarded place ribbons. All others receive participant or competitor ribbons. Please refer to Appendix B in the back of this handbook for our specific developmental league rules. If at anytime during the season you have a question concerning the application of these rules, talk to the coaching staff or a Team Rep.

Divisional “A” Relay Carnival: This meet and the Developmental Relay Carnival (see below) are perhaps the most exciting meets of the season. Each team in the division enters two relays for each age group and gender plus mixed age relays. One relay is all freestyle and the other is a medley with each swimmer swimming a different stroke. This meet is scored, ribbons are awarded for 1st - 6th place and the winning team in the division receives a trophy.

Developmental “B” Relay Carnival: Similar events to those mentioned above are run in this meet with events for 6 & under swimmers, and multiple teams for all age groups. All developmental swimmers will be asked and encouraged to participate. Swimmers who swam in the “A” meet carnival may not swim in this meet unless they are needed to round out a relay. Relays consisting of only developmental meet swimmers will be awarded 1st - 6th place ribbons. All other teams will receive participation ribbons.

IM Carnival: This meet has only Individual Medley events for all age groups. This meet is usually the last chance swimmers have to get an IM time prior to Divisionals. This is a short meet.

All Star Relay Carnival: Relay teams which achieve the 18 fastest times League-wide at the Division Relay Carnivals shall be eligible to compete in the same event in the All-Star Relay Carnival. One alternate relay team will also be designated.

Divisionals: This is the last meet of the season, prior to All-Stars. It consists of the same events as NVSL dual meets with 1 additional category: Individual Medley (IM). Two heats are run for each event, and each team in the division is allowed two lanes per event. Normally, the two swimmers with the fastest times from each team, in that event, will swim the event. Each swimmer may swim a max of 2 events. If a team in the division can’t fill their lanes, other teams can bid in for the empty lane thereby having more than two swimmers from one team in the event. Times in this meet serve as the only qualifying entries for the All-Star Meet. Plaques are awarded for 1st-6th place and ribbons for 7th - 12th place.

All Star Individual Championship Meet: Swimmers who achieve the 18 fastest times league-wide at Divisionals shall be eligible to compete in the same event in the Individual All-Star Meet. Two alternates shall also be designated.

Additional Meet Information

Travel to Meets: For all away “A” meets, swimmers and parents normally gather in the Mantua pool parking lot to caravan to the other pool. Specific travel plans and directions will be disseminated a day or so prior to each meet. Directions to all away meets can be downloaded from the NVSLwebsite http://nvsl.nvblu.com If you plan to go directly to the other pool, please let the Team Reps know so that they can account for your swimmer. For away “B” meets, swimmers and parents may go directly to the host pool and meet the team in the team area.

Swimmer Preparation: Please make sure your swimmer(s) bring two towels, sweatpants/shirts, and plenty of water to drink to all meets. It is recommended that you have an extra pair of goggles available in case the primary goggles are lost or broken. Swimmers should stay in the team area during warm-ups and during the meet. There, they will be able to cheer on their teammates, and when their swims come up, the coaches will be able to easily find them and get them to the Clerk of Course on time. Swimmers who are 12 or younger must have a parent/guardian or responsible adult present at all meets. For additional guidelines for swimmers during meets, please refer to Appendix D at the back of this Handbook.

Weather: Meets are never called just for rain. Always report, regardless of weather. If lightning occurs, the host pool will provide instructions for swimmers to wait in their cars until a decision has been made by the Team Reps on a delay, postponement, or cancellation. DO NOT LEAVE WITHOUT INFORMING THE HEAD COACH.

Disqualifications (DQ'S): There will inevitably come a time when a swimmer gets disqualified in an NVSL meet for doing something incorrectly. The DQ should be viewed as a learning experience and not as a penalty. If no one corrects an error, a swimmer may not realize that she/he is doing something incorrectly in competition. The coaches receive notification of the DQs so they can assist the swimmer in correcting his/her technique in practice. Remember, the emphasis is on learning and having fun doing so!

Etiquette: Once a meet has begun, parents must stay off the decks, and not go upstairs in the Mantua clubhouse. The area behind the timers must be kept clear during races. Please also refrain from visiting your children in the Clerk of Course area. This is an extremely busy place and our volunteers do an unbelievable job getting the children where they need to be in a timely fashion. Additional people, parents or extra swimmers, hinder the process. If a younger swimmer is anxious or apprehensive, please let a Team Rep know, and we will have one of the assistant coaches help the child. Lastly, please maintain quiet for the start of each race. But once the race has started, CHEER loudly for the Marlins! For additional guidelines for parents during meets, please refer to Appendix D at the back of this Handbook.

Family Support/Volunteerism: Parents are the key to our team’s success – we always need you!! All of the meets are run entirely by volunteer parents. It takes a minimum of 45 deck officials to run each meet; another 20, working in shifts, to run the snack bar and grills for home meets. Generally, if your child is swimming in a meet, a parent or guardian is expected to work at the meet. Please plan to help - it’s a lot of fun, the kids love it, and, most of all, they need you! If you are new to the team, this a great way to learn about swim team, meet other parents, and possibly have one of the best “seats” in the house to watch the meet! Volunteer assignments for A Meets will typically be done via email, after the meet line up is announced. Please say yes when you are asked. Volunteer sign-ups for B Meets are included with the swimmer sign-up form. Our volunteer coordinators are very creative and accommodating. They will work with you to provide you with preferred and convenient opportunities to volunteer. There are a wide variety of jobs and tasks that contribute to a smooth running meet. Some jobs can be done during the wek or on Fridays. Please consider all the opportunities and sign up! We appreciate your patience and willingness to serve on behalf of the swimmers.

Required Officials for Dual Meets: Those positions marked with an * require attendance at an NVSL clinic every 2 years (see below). If you are interested in filling any of these jobs, call one of the team reps or the Officials Coordinator.

1 Referee* 8 Relay Take-Off Judges 2 Place Recorders

1 Starter* 2 Clerks of Course 2 Scorers

1 Announcer 1 Chief Timer 2 Data Entry Personnel

2 Marshals 1 Assistant Chief Timer 2 Awards Clerks/Ribbons

4 Stroke & Turn Judges* 18 Timers 1 Runner as needed

Home Team provides: Visitor provides:

1 Referee

1 Starter

1 Announcer

1 Marshall 1 Marshall

2 Stroke & Turn Judges 2 Stroke & Turn Judges

4 Relay Take-off Judges 4 Relay Take-off Judges

1 Clerk of Course 1 Assistant Clerk of Course

1 Chief Timer 1 Assistant Chief Timer

9 Timers 9 Timers

1 Place Recorder 1 Place Recorder

1 Scorer 1 Scorer

1 Data Entry 1 Data Entry

1 Awards Clerk 1 Awards Clerk

1 Runner

Meet Officials/Training Schedule: The NVSL provides training clinics each year for meet officials. It is vital that we have enough parents to attend these clinics to insure that all swim meets run smoothly and fairly. The clinics review the rules under which the NVSL operates and the techniques that should be used to judge and work a meet. Please consider attending a clinic and being certified to perform one of these important functions for the team. Please let one of the team reps know if you would like to attend a clinic this season. The training clinic schedule is available by March of each year.

*Parking may be limited at these clinics so arrive early or carpool, if possible. Please be certain to arrive on time, sign in, and stay through the end to receive credit for attending. Clinic handouts for all officials are available on the NVSL website, and should be printed up ahead of time to take with you.

PLEASE NOTE: The uniform for deck officials is a white shirt (no team insignia) and navy blue bottoms (no blue jeans). Also, all officials must refrain from smoking, eating, or drinking while on deck (except water). So as not to interfere with one’s official duties and to maintain the appearance of objectivity, deck officials should also refrain from cheering.

Snack Bar: The snack bar is our major fundraising activity. This is a great volunteer activity for new parents! Adults are needed to purchase food items during the week, set up and break down the snack bar area, sell items during the meet, and cook items at the grill during the meet. Sellers and grillers usually work in shifts, and can usually step away for a minute or two to watch their child swim.

Other Volunteer Positions & Needs: In addition to the officials and snack bar volunteers, there are many other opportunities to assist the team and benefit our children. These include (but are not limited to!) coordinating the spirit wear sale, planning social activities for the swimmers, planning the parent social, assisting with the end of season banquet, coordinating the trophy/awards order, coordinating the Secret Buddy program, purchasing the Friday donuts, working the pancake breakfast, and coordinating or assisting with the Bagel Breakfast and team photos. With all these opportunities, there is something for everyone!


In addition to this Handbook, the following are other avenues we use to communicate with swimmers and families.

The Mantua Swim & Tennis Club Website is www.mantuastc.org In addition to the on-line registration link, the site has a wealth of information about the team: calendar, practice schedule, this handbook, other team policies, pictures, news & announcements, etc. Please visit often!

During the swim season, The Splash-O-Gram, a weekly newsletter, will be published most Sundays. It will posted on the website, and a hard copy will be in the file with the Family Folders.

Email from the Team Reps is our primary means of communicating time sensitive information, and any additional information on a weekly basis. Email is used to disseminate meet specific information, including swimmers selected for the Saturday “A” meets, and instructions for signing up for the Monday “B” meets. Please make sure the team reps have a good email address for your family – one that you check frequently and can access on the weekends.

The bulletin boards located in the clubhouse lobby will have information about upcoming meets, meet entries, sign-up information, social events, etc. This is a good starting point for the latest announcements. A bulletin board inside the pool area will be used to highlight team accomplishments. Also on the bulletin board inside the pool area will be a large poster with a section for each “A” meet of the season. This is where you must note swimmers who are not available for any one of the Saturday “A” meets. You do not need to note non-availability for Monday “B” meets.

Family Folders are set up for each family participating on the swim team. These folders are stored in file crates that are put out, on a table by the baby pool, each day during practice. These folders are family “mail boxes”. This is where you will find ribbons earned at swim meets, Secret Buddy information, and other swim team communications. Check your folder often. In the front of the first crate are folders containing Read Only copies of this handbook and the weekly Splash-O-Grams. Please supervise children when they are accessing the family folders.

On the Northern Virginia Swimming League web site: http://mynvsl.com, you will find additional information including the swim season schedule, league leaders, team standings, records, officials training calendar, and many documents.

Team Photos

Team photos are taken each year, usually on the Friday after FCPS gets out. Individual and family photos are also taken. Swimmers should wear their team suit to practice that day. Even if you are not interested in purchasing individual photos, please send your swimmer to be a part of the team photo. Mini Marlins are invited, but not required, to attend the team photo session.

Social Activities

With the generous commitment of time by many parents, our team is able to host a wide variety of social events. Some activities will be geared to our older swimmers only, others can be enjoyed by the whole team, and still others will focus on the swimming family. Please refer to the calendar for specific details.

For all social events where reservations are required and space is limited, participants will be limited to team members and their siblings if their parent accompanies them. All 12 & unders must be accompanied by an adult to all social activities.

The team registration fee will cover some in-house activities such as spirit events, the Bagel Breakfast, and Friday Doughnut Days. The team may subsidize other activities like the awards party at the end of the season, or other outside social events, but most will require additional monies in order for a swimmer to participate.

The annual Secret Buddy program is a great way for swimmers to get to know other swimmers on the team. Briefly, the program lasts for three weeks during which time participating swimmers purchase gifts for the secret buddy that they have been assigned. The first two gifts are exchanged without divulging the identity of the secret buddies, but with a clue to their identity. The last gift exchange is done in person, allowing the swimmers to introduce themselves to their buddy and reveal their identity. The Secret Buddy coordinators provide detailed information at the beginning of the season. Participation is voluntary. Mini Marlins have their own secret buddy program.


Scholarships are awarded each year by the NVSL to help NVSL graduates defray a portion of their college expenses. The NVSL selects graduating swimmers and/or divers to receive a cash award to be used at the college of his or her choice. Applicants should fill out the forms provided by the NVSL (see a Team Rep or check the NVSL website) and attach two letters of recommendation. Applications are usually due at the end of June. Please contact one of the team reps for further details, and note the application deadline listed on the forms.


Tom Light Award

Tom Light was a very popular swimmer on the Mantua Marlins Swim Team in the early 1960’s. His entire family was actively involved with the team as well. Tom was killed in a mountain climbing accident as a teenager, and upon his death, the swim team established an award in his memory. It continues today to be the most prestigious award given to our swimmers. This award will be given to two outstanding swimmers on the team who display exemplary qualities in team spirit, attitude, sportsmanship, attendance, hard work, cooperation, leadership, aquatic ability and performance. In addition, they should have a demonstrated history with the team along with an outstanding commitment to the ideals of the team and a willingness to help others. The names of those swimmers will be engraved on a permanent plaque in the clubhouse.

Marlin Award

The Marlin Award will be awarded to each swimmer who swims every stroke available to him/her at some point during the season. To earn this award, 8 & unders must swim all 4 competitive strokes, and 9 & overs must swim all 4 competitive strokes and the Individual Medley. Credit for strokes will come from swims in time trials, “A” meets, or “B” meets.

Lifetime Marlin Award

This relatively new award is earned by graduating senior swimmers who have swum with the Mantua Marlins for 10 years or more. An engraved name plate for each eligible swimmer will be added to the plaque hanging in the pool clubhouse.


This award is availableto each swimmer who has participated in the program during the summer, competed in two (or more) A or B meets and has attended 75% of the practices. The first year a swimmer is eligible for this award s/he will receive a plaque with their name and a brass plate for the year. In successive years, the swimmer will receive a brass plate for the year to add to the plaque. As some families have opted out of receiving these awards in the past, towards the end of the season, families will be asked if they desire to have this award for their swimmers. A positive response is necessary for the swimmer to receive the award.

Appendix A: Swim Meet Timetables

For Saturday morning home meets:

7:45 a.m. - Arrive, go immediately to our team area and await instructions from the coaches.

8:00 a.m. - Warm-ups

8:15 a.m. – Officials report

8:30 a.m. – Swimmers meet with coaches and get psyched! Shows of spirit.

9:00 a.m. - Meet begins

12:00 p.m. – Approximate meet end time

For Saturday away meets:

7:30-7:45 am - Meet at Mantua to caravan to the meet.

8:15 a.m. - Arrive at host pool, gather in the parking lot (swimmers and parents) and walk in together cheering our team. Officials sign in.

8:30 a.m. - Warm-ups

9:00 a.m. - Meet begins

12:00 p.m. – Approximate meet end time

For Monday evening home meets:

4:45 p.m. - Arrive at Mantua. Go immediately to the team area and await instructions from the coaches.

5:00 p.m. - Warm-ups

5:15 p.m. – Officials report

5:30 p.m. – Swimmers meet with coaches and get psyched!

6:00 p.m. - Meet begins

9:00 p.m. – Approximate meet end time

For Monday evening away meets:

5:15 p.m. - Arrive at host pool, go directly to the team area and await instructions from the coaches. Officials sign in.

5:30 p.m. - Warm-ups

6:00 p.m. - Meet begins

9:00 p.m. – Approximate meet end time

Appendix B: Developmental League Guidelines

Fairfax Area Swim Teams

Developmental Meet Guidelines

5/1/12 (final)

1)In the spirit of Developmental Meet swimmer development and in the interest of running efficient meets:

a)The Individual Medley (“IM”) event will be run at the end of the meet. (Thus, the order of stroke events for the meets will be freestyle, backstroke, breaststroke, butterfly and IM.)

b)Officials will be assigned to both ends of the pool in order to simplify and shorten the disqualification process during a meet. The home team will supply the referee and the away team will supply the chief judge. (Our goal at every meet is to have a referee and a chief judge on duty.) If the away team cannot provide a trained chief judge, then an experienced S&T judge or Starter can fill the position. .

c)If at all possible, the away team will bring their starter device so there can be one on each end of the pool.

d)Breaststroke and butterfly should not be swum in a meet until the team coaches have determined that the swimmer has a reasonable chance to swim a legal stroke and not be disqualified.

e)True “A” level swimmers (defined as: swimmers who consistently swim two events and generally place in the “A” meets) shall not swim in the Developmental Meets unless the coaches need times. In those cases, the team should register the swimmer as “time only”.

f)The team reps and coaches should provide the table workers with a list of ‘time only’ swimmers at the beginning of each meet. These are swimmers who are true “A” level swimmers and even if they are swimming their ‘off’ strokes they should not be considered for B ribbons.

g)The Clerk of Course should try to fill as many lanes as possible in each heat. Ages and/or genders may be mixed to make this happen. Ribbons and place holders are still based on separate ages and genders, even if the heats are mixed.

2)Except as noted in this document (or as agreed to by the team representatives during the season), rules will be the same as those established for NVSL dual meets.

3)A swimmer is eligible to compete in a stroke in the Developmental Meets as long as he/she has not won a first, second or third place ribbon in that stroke in the Saturday “A” meet immediately prior. The Developmental Meet eligibility assessment will be determined on a week-by-week basis, and by taking into consideration guidelines 1.e and 11.

4)All qualified swimmers may compete. Unofficial swimmers will be allowed by coaches’ or team representatives’ discretion only. Unofficial swimmers can swim in “time only” heats and will not be awarded ribbons.

5)Team representatives/coaches may make individual decisions on swimmer eligibility based on their own team needs, but should consider the spirit of the Developmental Meets in making these decisions and place swimmers in the “time only” heats when more appropriate.

6)Swimmers may participate in a maximum of two strokes plus the IM, except if agreed in advance by the team representatives. 10 and under swimmers may swim two strokes plus fly or IM (There may be occasions where a swimmer will want to swim both fly and IM and nothing else. In these cases, please refer to guideline number 11.)

7)Place ribbons will be awarded for overall places 1 through 6. These ribbons will be supplied by the pool hosting the meet. The number of places announced is at the discretion of the hosting pool. Teams may choose to provide participation ribbons to their swimmers and the team is responsible for providing these ribbons.

8)Heat winner ribbons will be awarded for the first place finisher in each heat for swimmers 10 and under. The ribbons will be awarded to the swimmer immediately on completion of the heat, even if a swimmer has disqualified. These ribbons will be supplied by the host pool. (The decision to award heat winner ribbons is at the discretion of the home pool.)

9)Delays, postponements, or cancellations for weather will be the discretion of the host pool and its pool management staff.

10)The meet warm-up times will be as follows: 1) the home team warms up from 5:15-5:30PM, and 2) the away team warms up from 5:30-5:45PM.

11)The final swimmer placement decisions made using these Developmental Meet guidelines will be at the discretion of the coaches and/or team representatives.

Appendix C: Guidelines for Swimmers and Parents During Meets

Guidelines for Swimmers:

1. Eat a healthy meal/snack at home before the meet.

2. Stay in the team area at all times. Do not wander off into the stands during the meet.

3. When your event is coming up, the coaches will send you to clerk of course.

4. Sit quietly and follow directions from the Clerk of Course.

5. After your swim, stay in the pool until all swimmers finish their swim. Shake hands with other swimmers. Then return to the team area right away so the coaches can give you feedback on your swim.

6. Cheer loudly for all of your teammates when they are swimming.

7. After your last swim, cheer even louder until the last relay is finished.

8. Display good sportsmanship. There will be no booing, vulgarity, nastiness or any form of poor sportsmanship directed at fellow teammates or the opposing team.

9. Eat only nutritious snacks during the meet, and drink plenty of water, before, during and after the meet to keep hydrated.

10. After the meet, the entire team is expected to make sure that our team area is completely clean before anyone leaves.

Guidelines for Parents:

1. At away meets, walk into the host pool together with the team.

2. Maintain quiet for the start of each race. The call for quiet (referee's whistle) must be observed if the starter is to start each race fairly.

3. Parents should never disturb the scorers with questions on times or scores. Announcements of scores are made regularly throughout an “A” meet. .

4. If questions arise during the meet, please direct them to the Team Reps.

5. Sit together as a block, with other Marlins parents.

6. Cheer along with the team. Make a sign to cheer on your swimmer/relay/team.

7. Wear blue and white, our team colors, or dress to the weekly theme.

8. Stay off the deck and refrain from visiting your child in the Clerk of Course area.

9. Please arrange to stay until the last event has been swum.

10. Parents of 12 & under swimmers must be present during the meet.

10. Think positive, be supportive, and have FUN!

Appendix D: NVSL Standards of Conduct

The following Standards of Conduct shall guide swimming and divingwithin the Northern Virginia Swimming League (NVSL). They promote respect, fairness, civility, honesty, responsibility, and appropriate behavior. These Standards foster a positive environment at all swim and dive meets; establish an atmosphere of respect for all participants, officials, and spectators; produce positive learning outcomes for all; build participant and team spirit; and enhance the sports of swimming and diving.

All Athletes, Coaches, Team Representatives, Officials, Parents / Spectators, and NVSL Leadership shall:

Abide by the established rules of the NVSL.

Respect all officials at all times, and address them in a courteous manner.

Avoid using inappropriate language, profanity, humiliating or intimidating remarks or behavior, verbal or physical assault toward any athlete, coach, Team Representative, official, NVSL leadership representative, or spectator.

Follow applicable management, pool, and facility rules, respecting others’ property at all times.

Display respect, courtesy, and good manners toward athletes, coaches, Team Representatives, and spectators. Team Representatives shall assist officials in maintaining control of spectators during meets.

Demonstrate humility in victory and courtesy in defeat.

Head Coaches shall:

Ensure athletes and assistant coaches demonstrate maturity and good sportsmanship toward other athletes, officials, coaches, and spectators at all times.

Lead by example to instill a love for the sport, advance aquatic skills, teamwork and good sportsmanship in their team.

Spectators shall:

Maintain an appropriate distance from the competition area by remaining in established viewing areas and shall not encroach the pool deck or interfere with any officials.

Not engage in loud, intimidating, disrespectful, or negative behavior toward officials, athletes, other spectators, support personnel, or pool staff (including lifeguards).

Appendix G: Glossary of Terms

25 meters One length of the pool.

50 meters Two lengths of the pool.

Freestyle The four strokes which make up

Backstroke events at all meets. Proper execution

Breastroke of them are defined by USS Swimming

Butterfly and NVSL rules.

Clerk of Course Person(s) responsible for getting swimmers lined up and to the starting area for their events.

Cut time Times used to establish seeding (and eligibility) for meets.

Division Each team is placed in one of 17 NVSL divisions as

determined by the NVSL. Thee are currently 6 teams per division.

Divisionals Qualifying meet for the Individual All-Star Meet.

DQ Disqualification, when a stroke is not executed in the prescribed legal manner.

False Start When a swimmer starts fefore the starting signal. Results in a DQ and is called by the Starter or Referee as determined by NVSL rules.

Backstroke Flags Placement above the pool, at both ends, helps determine a backstroker’s stroke count to the wall. The flags allow for faster swims, and are an important safety device to prevent swimmers from swimming into the wall with their head.

Flip Turn Underwater turn in a 50 meter or longer race.

Individual Medley One swimmer swimming all four strokes (25 Meters each) in the following order: fly, back, breast and free.

Ladder Each swimmer’s time put in fastest to slowest order; used to

establish placements in meets (i.e. seeding a meet).

Legal Stroke Execution of stroke as defined by USS Swimming or NVSL rules. Whether a stroke is done in the correct manner is determined by the referee and/or stroke and turn judges at the meet.

Medley Relay Four swimmers each doing one leg, of one of the 4 strokes listed above.

Relay Team comprised of four swimmers.

Team Area Designated area where each team member is to stay during a meet.

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