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What you need to know

Can my child practice with another age group if we can't make the regular practice time?
Yes, but only on a case-by case and day-by day basis. The swimmer will have to do the workout scheduled during that practice time. Make sure that your child asks if he/she can swim in a different workout, and does not assume, or "tell" the coaches that they are going to swim at a different time.

If my child misses morning practice can he/she swim at the afternoon practice?
NO! Space is limited in the afternoon practices (after school is out) and is reserved for those swimmers whose parents both work, or who are attending summer school or camps. Afternoon practice is not a "back-up" swim practice. If your swimmer misses morning practice because of a doctor's appointment, sleeping at a friend's house or sleeping in (including parents sleeping in), then he/she just misses practice that day.

What if it thunders in the morning?
Even if it thunders in the morning, morning swimmers CANNOT come to afternoon practice. There will be NO exceptions and swimmers will be sent away if they are not attending afternoon practice for one of the reasons mentioned above. This is the only fair way for the swimmers and the Wortham residents.

What do I do when my child has to miss a meet (or part of a meet)?
If your child will miss a meet (or part of a meet), you MUST change your meet declaration by the Monday night prior to the meet. This is extremely important. No-shows jeopardize relays or even the entire team if one of the normal confusions associated with no-shows gets out of control. If your swimmer becomes sick after the Monday deadline, and won't make it, you must contact one of the board members or coaches ASAP so that they can deal with any changes that will need to be made. It is also important to be on time to the meets. We may scratch your child from the meet if he/she is late.

Why does my child always get "DQ'd"?
Just like in anything else, sometimes it takes a while for swimmers to understand the stroke mechanics. There are over 200 children on the team, and there is not enough time or resources for frequent individual attention, although the coaches do the best they can. The best solution for you as a parent (in addition to continuing to encourage your swimmer) is to familiarize yourself with the stroke mechanics and "do's and don'ts" of swimming and help your own child. The best swimmers are the ones whose parents get involved, even if they don't know much about swimming.

View the NWAL Official Rule Book (PDF). This may help in your understanding of the rules of swimming and strokes.

How can I help my child swim better?
The best way to help your child swim faster and better is to continue to encourage them every step of the way. In addition, you can familiarize yourself with the stroke mechanics and "do's and don'ts" of swimming. Ask questions, pay attention to practice and meets, and observe other swimmers.

When can I talk to the coaches?
NOT during practice times. During these times the coaches need to focus their attention on the swimmers. If you want to talk to the coaches, catch them before the first practice or after the last practice. Before or after the meets is usually an okay time as well. In addition, there is a coaches folder in the family folders boxes. Otherwise, relay your message to one of the board members and they will make sure the coaches get the message. Along those same lines, please don't talk to your swimmers while they are at practice, it can be distracting to everyone.

How does my child get on the "A" relay?
Each swimmer has an opportunity to earn a spot on an "A" relay. No one has a guaranteed spot on a relay, even if they have been on the relay every time before. The 4 best swimmers, determined by the coaches, will swim on the relay. Sometimes the swimmers with the 4 best times are not the 4 best swimmers. For instance, some swimmers swim much faster in relays than in individual events. Some swimmers consistently DQ relays. Some swimmers don't swim an individual event every meet and so they are faster than their listed time is. The bottom line is, trust the coaches, they are usually right. The coaches do however let all swimmers swim relays at some point in the season.

Is Divisionals optional?
NO! Of all the meets, Divisionals is the most important. EVERYONE swims.

What are the Invitational meets? (Ponderosa, All-Stars, Pentathalon)

Invitational meets are optional meets that generally require a swimmer to meet a qualifying time. You or your swimmer will be informed if he/she has qualified for an invitational meet. If your child makes the time, they are encouraged to go. These meets are great experiences, and most of the time the competition generates amazing results from our swimmers.

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