About The Swim Team
The Little Hunting Park’s Gators Swim Team is a seasonal team and charter member of the Northern Virginia Swimming League (NVSL), which was founded in 1956 to sponsor competitive swimming among the community swimming pools in Northern Virginia, and to develop in the children participating in this program a love for the sport, advanced aquatic skills, teamwork, and the principles of good sportsmanship.
The Team is made up of members of the Little Hunting Park. The Team’s goal is to provide every swimmer opportunities to improve swimming skills and to achieve success for the Team and for themselves. The Gators focus on stroke development, sportsmanship, Team camaraderie, recognition of achievement and fun!
Little Hunting Park members, who are less than 19 years old, as of June 1, are eligible to join the Gators. Additionally, swimmers must be able to swim the length of the pool unassisted and be judged by the Head Coach to be capable of effectively participating in 30-minute practice sessions. Swimmers who have developed sufficient skills to participate in practice sessions may join the Team anytime throughout the season and are strongly encouraged to do so.
What the Swim Team expects from swimmers:
Do your best – it’s a lot more important than being the best.
Conduct yourself in a respectful and sportsmanlike manner at all times.
Follow directions of Coaches and Officials.
Support and encourage teammates.
What the Swim Team expects from parents:
Notify Team Representative and Coaches of planned absences as soon as possible. Declare availability for meets on the Team website.
Remain off the deck and out of the Team area during practice and meets, unless serving in official capacity. Refrain from discussions with the Coaches during practices and meets.
Provide volunteer support.
What swimmers and parents should expect from the Swim Team:
A well run organization focused on developing young swimmers in a healthy and supportive atmosphere.
Accurate and timely communications of schedule and expectations.
A whirlwind of a season that will leave swimmers and parents exhausted, extremely proud of what they have accomplished, and ready for that August vacation.
A unique youth team sport, in which boys and girls, 8 year olds and 18 year olds, have an equal opportunity to contribute to the Team’s competitive success.
Expect a lot of fun: new friends, old friends, pasta dinners, exciting races, social outings, spirit day, mini-meets, and unforgettable memories galore.
The Gators offer daily, weekday practices from the day after Memorial Day through the last full week of July. Practice sessions are held for one hour (30 minutes for the youngest swimmers). Practice is held “rain or shine,” as long as the pool is open. Thunder, lightning or very heavy rain may temporarily close the pool and delay or cancel a practice session. Pool closure is decided by LHP management. Swimmers should arrive on deck 5 minutes prior to scheduled practice start time in order to don cap and goggles and receive initial instructions and lane assignments. Swimmers should come to practice regularly and should be prepared to do their best and follow Coaches’ directions.
The Gators offer multiple opportunities for swimmers to compete. Swim meets generally take place on Saturday mornings and Monday evenings and last about 4 hours. Meets begin with “warm-ups,” which are short (~25 minutes) practice sessions. Swimmers should arrive in the team area 10 minutes prior to scheduled warm-up and check in with their assigned Assistant Coach or Head Coach. Swimmers should remain in the team area for the duration of the meet or until they have completed their final event. Parents may escort younger swimmers to the team area, but parents should not remain in the team area.
Like practice, swim meets are held in rain or shine, as long as the pool is open. If weather or other safety consideration temporarily closes a pool during a meet, swimmers and parents should shelter in cars and wait it out. The Team Representative, Referee and Pool Manager will decide if it is necessary to delay, cancel, or reschedule a meet. The Team Rep will use email or similar messaging to provide real-time weather-related news.
What to Wear
Swimmers should wear an appropriate “racing” swimsuit, well-fitting goggles and cap to practice and meets. Team suits and caps are optionally available for purchase for use at meets from our Swimsuit coordinator, Alicia Freitag firstname.lastname@example.org. Good quality goggles, suits and other swimming related gear are available at Sport Fair in Arlington. NVSL rules prohibit wearing any team cap other than a “Gators” cap. A generic cap is fine.
What to Bring
Always bring a water bottle or sports drink to practices and meets. A light nourishing snack such as fruit, granola bars or other healthy food is also good to have on hand. Dry, weather appropriate clothing for after or even during meets is a good idea to pack, along with one or more dry towels. Spare goggles and caps are often handy.
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