What is a swim meet?
A swim meet is like a rugby or netball game. It is where all of the hard training pays off as swimmers pit their skills against swimmers from all over the local area, region and country. Swimmers compete in timed races and aim to get the fastest time possible.
Why should my child compete?
North Shore Swimming Club is not a swim school but a competitive club. The training has one aim, for swimmers to become more competent and faster swimmers so that they may compete against other swimmers from other clubs and earn points for their club.
North Shore is highly competitive and is the top club in the country based on points. As swimmers compete they become more proficient swimmers and over time decrease their times by gaining PB's (personal bests).
As their times decrease they are eligible to enter more competitions with tougher competition but with greater glory.
When a swimmer gains official times, they are recorded on the database and they can then be selected for Club Relay teams, which is a great honour.
Every year the club holds a prize giving which aims to find the most talented swimmer for each age group in individual strokes and overall. If your swimmer doesn't compete in a variety of events they are less likely to achieve the points to achieve one of these exciting prizes.
On top of this, Swim Meets can be great fun and swimmers can make lots of new friends. It is the perfect reward for all of that hard training. All the pain and no glory?? We don't think so.
How can I find out about a swim competition?
- You can find all swim meets on the NSS Swimming Website. See all flyers under Meets and Events.
- The Notice Boards at the Takapuna Pool and Millennium Institute Pools.
The closing date for all meets will be posted on the website as well as on the posters. This is the only closing date that parents should be keeping in their diary.
All entries MUST go through the office to check registration, outstanding fees, and so that the correct information can be delivered to the club who is running the meet. If any swimmer enters around the office their results will not be able to be confirmed as official results and can not be counted.
What swim meets can I enter?
You may enter any swim Meet that you have qualified for. Because Auckland is much larger than the rest of NZ swimmers are split into 3 Levels.
If you are a beginner you will start at a Level 3 Northern Zone Swim meets. Once you qualify for an event in the level above you may only swim in that level.
The only exception to this is if the meet is an ALL Level Meet.
Other meets to qualify for are:
- Auckland Championship Events
- National Championship Events
How do I enter?
The only way to enter a swim meet is to complete the relevant details on Direct Athletics. Please ensure that these are done on time and the entries are paid at the same time.
What do I do if I miss the NSS meet entry closing date?
Unfortunately you can do nothing once the entries have been collected and sent on to the club organising the swim meet.
Please make sure you check out our website and look at the notice boards at the swimming pools for regular updates and notices. A good idea is to do your entries early so you don't miss out.
What races should I swim?
Please understand that your coaches aim for the best for your swimmers and take on board their advice when consulted.
Swimmers should perform an absolute MAXIMUM of 4 events per session unless otherwise directed. This is to allow adequate rest between events.
Try to cycle through all races once every three months to keep improving your times.
Race choices should be kept varied and unless directed the same event should NOT be swum at two consecutive meets.
Should I talk to the coach about what races to enter at a meet?
YES! This is Very important. Your coaches know your swimmers ability best and have their best interests at heart. Some coaches may do all entries for you. Please follow this advice as they aim to give your swimmer the most positive experience possible.
Should I enter different races at every meet?
YES! Your coach will help you with this. It is important for swimmers to gain experience in a variety of events to gain confidence.
By leaving an event for a couple of months your child will have a better chance of gaining a PB (personal best); a very positive experience.
There are only a total of 17 competitive races in swimming. By alternating between races swimmers should be able to complete all races every 3 or 4 months before starting again.
What do I need at a swim meet?
To compete at an interclub swim meet you need to have NSS togs, NSS Cap and a NSS T-shirt.
At a swim meet make sure you have your Goggles, a couple of towels and lots of healthy food snacks.
Your young swimmers should know what events they are doing that session so they can focus on them in the warm ups.
What should I eat at a meet?
You should ensure your child attends a meet with high energy healthy foods and snacks.
Don't be fooled by TV or Advertising, V, Red Bull and Lift Plus Drinks are extremely bad for your swimmers. Chocolate and Lollies are also extremely bad for your swimmers. These products give your swimmers a very large amount of initial energy, however, these levels then plummet making them very tired.
Remember the habits you teach your swimmers about eating will stay with them for the rest of their lives.
To find out more about Nutrition see our Links page under the nutrition section.
Do I need to rest between sessions at a swim meet?
For Level 3 swimmers the intensity of swimming is still low enough for this not to be a major concern.
Swimmers competing at Level 2 should begin to learn good resting habits.
For Level 1 swimmers and those who qualify for any Auckland or National Championship event, rest should definitely factor into their preparation and recovery at meets.
Go home and sleep or relax and watch a bit of TV. It is not a good idea to go shopping, go to the movies, or to a friend's house to play.
Each swimmer (family) who enters a competition is required to assist in the running of that competition.
Assistance may take the form of help in any one or more of the following;
- Turn Judge
- Set-up and Set-down
- Door Sales
- Team management
These are not onerous tasks if spread amongst many. It only becomes so when only a few come forward to help. Helping at meets helps your swimmer and ensures meets run to schedule and finish on time.
Parents are required to take a turn in supporting the functioning of the club by assisting in the running of the meets. Many hands make light work. Come forward, you will enjoy the experience.
When you are not helping parents should relax, sit back and enjoy the swimming. You might not realise this but stressed parents equal stressed children. Simply enjoy the event and ENCOURAGE your children. Leave ALL swimming discussion and feedback to their coaches. This is their job.
How are away meets organised?
When your swimmer makes a team that is travelling away to another city or country it is important to know couple of things.
- The club will do the bookings for Accommodation and will organise all major meals.
- Flights are sometimes done on a club basis but often on an individual basis. Please ensure you liaise with the club to ensure your child is on the correct flight.
- All information and budgets will be given to you about 3 - 4 months in advance so you will know what is happening.
Should I train the day before a meet or should I be resting?
This is a decision to be made by your coach and the training schedule they are following.
Unless otherwise directed training continues as normal!
Do I have to go to every meet?
It is important to get as much racing practice as you can. You can assess this through the Auckland Level swim meets and our own Club Night once a month.
Regular race practice is vital and you should enter as many as possible.
Remember it is important to race so you can get your qualifying times to compete at the Auckland or New Zealand Champs. If you don't race you can not qualify!!!
Where can I find qualifying times for meets and levels?
Qualifying times are best found on the Technical Homepage.
Please see our Links page for regional and national swimming bodies which post consistently up to date qualifying times.
What happens on the day of a meet?
Make sure you know when Warm up starts!
- You must arrive 15min before the start of warm up for:
- Team talk
- Warm-up instructions
- Team Stretching
- Check Your Race Entries are correct
NSS Coaches will take the warm up, NO PARENTS ARE ALLOWED TO INTERFERE with the coaching. If a parent is seen to be coaching at a swim meet they will be asked to leave the pool. If it continues they will be BANNED from all Swim Meets.
If you have a question or concern the process is to find the NSS team Manager and ask them to deal with the problem. They will then contact the coach or an official. NO PARENTS ARE ALLOWED TO APPROACH OUR VOLUNTEER OFFICIALS.
Any Parent seen to be acting in an inappropriate way will be removed from the pool. At a number of swim meets the parents will have a separate viewing area and are not permitted to sit with the team. Please sit in the designated viewing areas.
Once your swimmer has finished their team warm up they will then go back to their team area and wait until the manager calls them up to go to marshalling. Normally our NSS banner will be hanging over our team area.
Every Meet has a volunteer manager from one of the swimmers parents who are swimming at the meet. It is their responsibility to make sure the swimmers are looked after whilst sitting with the team and are told to go to the marshalling area when it is time.
When your swimmer is waiting with the team is very important that they keep warm. Tracksuits are on, shoes are on their feet. If they are cold they will swim slowly. Swimmers should keep wearing their gear right up until the race before them finishes ensuring their body temperature is kept high.
The team manager will tell you when to go to your coach before your race. The coach on duty will give your swimmer a racing plan and will tell your swimmer what they need to work on. At younger levels this is kept very basic and as they grow in the world of swimming so will the racing plans become more detailed.
Then it is time for them to go to Marshalling. ALL swimmers MUST see a coach before going to marshalling. Once in Marshalling they will be put in their races and sent to the start line.
After their race the swimmer is to get out and come back to see the coach straight away for instant feed back. At older levels they will then be sent to a warm down pool to recover. At younger levels they only need to go back to their seat, dry off and get warm. They will then wait for the manager to call them for their next race.
If a swimmer needs to go to the toilet or needs to go away from the team then it vital that they tell the NSS Manager where they are going and how long they will be. If a swimmer misses their race because they could not be found then no responsibility will be taken by the NSS staff on duty.
What is a PB?
PB stands for Personal Best. The first time you swimmer swims a race they will be given a seeded time. When they beat this time their new time will be recorded and will become their new seeded time. Every time they beat this time it is called a personal best and this will be recorded.
Every PB is a GREAT achievement and one which will become harder and less common the more your child swims.
What is a disqualification?
A disqualification occurs when a swimmer fails to comply with the rules of that race and stroke. This could be an incorrect turn, failure to touch with two hands in Breast and Fly, an incorrect kicking infringement or early starts in relays or races.
When a swimmer is disqualified their time for that race is not counted. Younger swimmers are often learning these rules and may not know the reason they have been disqualified.
If your child is disqualified please find something POSITIVE from their race to comment on and leave the disqualification feedback to their COACH. All swimmers will be disqualified at some point and it should be seen as something to learn from and not do next time.
Swimmers will generally feel bad about being disqualified, they don't need to be told that it was bad, simply what to do instead next time.
Swimming should be kept fun and positive. This is the path to succeed.