Practice Etiquette for Nova Masters Swimmers

Coach Michael Collins giving a set
Organizied Practices are more FUN!

By Michael Collins, Irvine Novaquatics Masters Head Coach

Below is a list of things that will help you enjoy practices more as well as get along better with your lane mates. Masters practices often have more swimmers per lane than lap swimming so it is important to get in a lane of appropriate speed (not too fast or too slow) and follow these guidelines so you have a great time and enjoy every session.

POOL ACCESS

  • Use your access card to check-in as they enter the pool both at the Woollett Aquatic Center (WAC), and at Northwood High School for the evening practices and whenever weekend practices are there. Please do not blow past the City staff as you come in – even if you are running late for practice. You need to stop and show your card.
  • Please treat the City staff with courtesy and respect to help in our efforts to keep a good relationship with the City. If you have a problem or issue with a city staff member please feel free to discuss it with me and I will discuss the complaint with the aquatic supervisors.
  • Masters swimmers are not allowed in the pool until a Masters coach is on the deck. All Masters swimmers must be out of the pool when the coach leaves – unless you pay the lap swim fee to stay in longer.
  • Masters swimmers need to pay the lap swim fee if they come to the pool during non-Masters practice times.
  • If you swim at the first practice of the morning or the last practice in the evening, please be prepared to assist in pulling covers. It goes quite quickly with enough help. It should not be the same few people helping each day. Plan to arrive early and help at least one day a week. Ideally it takes 3 people per cart to quickly remove the covers and not put them on the reels crooked. Swimmers are not allowed in the pool until all pool covers are removed anyways, so you might as well help. If it’s the last practice of the day and covers are being put on, you need to exit the pool, and not continue to warm-down past the end of practice.
  • No bicycles are allowed on the deck or in the pool building. If you ride a bike to practice, please bring a lock and use the fence outside the pool.

During Practice

  • • Get in at the begining of the practice and get a good warmup before the first set is given.
  • • Listen to the coach while the set in being given, and clarify any misunderstandings with the coach and not other  swimmers in the lane if you are confused.
  • •Learn the names of the swimmers in your lane.
  • • Learn to read the pace clock  (Know both your time and the interval).
  • • Stay on the interval and help others stay on the interval.
  • • Count your laps and stop at the appropriate number.
  • • Don’t change the interval without conferring with lane-mates.
  • • The slowest person in the lane should be able to make the interval with some rest.
  • • Get the right order in your lane (Fastest to slowest).
  • • Don’’t “sit” right on the feet of the person in front of you. Go ahead of them or leave further apart.
  • • Leave at least :05 apart (Preferably :10 apart if 3 or less in the lane)
  • • Stay to the right side of the lane.
  • • Turn at the wall in the middle of the lane (Like the shape of the tip of a giant football).
  • • If you about to get lapped, stop at the next wall and let others pass you.
  • • Be aware of where others are in the lane. Anticipate when they’ll catch you and pull over.
  • • Don’’t push off right in front of someone about to turn if they are faster.
  • • Finish swims to the wall and move to the left to allow others to finish to the wall.
  • • If unable to do a particular skill, do a drill or swim that is about the same speed.
  • • Brush your teeth, or rinse with mouthwash before practice.
  • • Don’’t breathe on people when resting at the wall.

Advance Practice Etiquette (for better performance):

  • • Encourage others in practice
  • • Count strokes when asked
  • • Descend swims when asked
  • • Negative split swims when asked
  • • Even split swims when not given special instructions
  • • Start, turn, & finish with legal pushoffs and touches
  • • Finish fast swims with strong legs and limited breathing
  • • Finish all swims with an underwater touch
    • On side for Free & Back
    • Two- handed for Fly & Breast