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Advice for 6 or 8 & Under Helpers

Before the Meet Begins

  • Find the other helper for your age / gender group.
  • Get the clipboards (there is one clipboard for each gender/age group) from the meet plastic bin. On the clipboard is a line up for the meet for your group for each child.
  • Make sure all swimmers on the line up are at the meet. If any are missing, tell the appropriate coach.
  • Know your group meeting location where swimmers gather before events.

6&un Girls: Bridge

6&un Boys: Lazy river

8&un Girls: Lifeguard stand by leisure pool

8&un Boys: Leisure pool Handicap ramp

  • Gather your swimmers. Parents should bring their children to you.  If you don’t know a child well enough to recognize him/her during the meet, write her name on her arm (e.g. Go Jenny!). It is recommended that each swimmer’s events are written on their arm also. (e.g. #13 25 Free H1L3 stands for event #13 girl’s 6 and under 25 freestyle, heat 1, lane 3). Ask the child’s parent before writing on child.  There may be an allergy.

During the Meet

Follow the Order of Events when getting your group ready for each event.

Tips for Individual Events

  • When they are on 11-12 of the prior event, start taking the swimmers to the block. Helpers take the group over to the blocks, placing each swimmer behind the appropriate block in order by event number and heat.
  • Stay there — the children will not be swimming for a few minutes and they need to stay in place. A line of contestants forms behind the block in each lane. This line starts to form for the next event (e.g. backstroke) while the current event (e.g. butterfly) is finishing. Girls always swim the event first, and then the boys do the same event. Heat 1, Heat 2,  etc.  The girls 6 & under group starts the event followed by boys of the same age, proceeding to the next age group. Note – 6 & Unders only swim Free and Back.
  • Helpers: Encourage swimmers, reminding them what they are swimming, help put on cap and goggles and keeping the children in line. Swimmers must stay back from the blocks. The starter needs to be able to tell which swimmers are racing in the current event. Listen closely when the starter calls the event to make sure our swimmer swim in the right heat. 

Tip for Relays: (Additional parent may be needed)

  • The second and forth swimmers will start from in the water due to the shallow depth of the pool. They may not enter the water until the first or third swimmer has started. Once the first or third swimmer dive in, the second or forth swimmer will enter the water. They should sit down on the edge and slide into the water. The swimmer needs to keep one hand and one foot on the wall at all times.
  • Remind the swimmer not to go until they see the oncoming swimmer’s hand touch the wall. You should not yell GO, even if you are cheering the oncoming swimmer, unless the waiting swimmer freezes after the wall has been touched. We have had parents yell GO to encourage the oncoming swimmer and the waiting swimmer pushes off early and false starts which disqualifies the whole team. Remind the number 2 swimmer is not to go when the starting beep sounds!
  • The free relay is all four legs swim freestyle, the medley relay is in this order: First swimmer starts in the water for a backstroke start, second swimmer swims breast stroke, third swimmer butterfly (from blocks), final swimmer free. Remind each swimmer what stroke he or she is swimming in the medley!Please be very careful with relays, they are the most difficult to organize. Since the 8&UN each swim 1 lap of the pool, swimmers will be starting from both ends. The first and third swimmers report to the blocks with one helper and turn in the heat sheet, the second and fourth to the opposite end (same lane!) with another helper.
  • All meets start immediately after the away team warm-up with 8&un Medley relays. The coaches decide which relay will be swum. You will need to get the relay teams together as soon as the kids are released from warm-up. Girls are always first, then the same event for the boys follows. Girls events are always odd numbered and boys are even. For the relays, get the swimmers in position – Since the 8&UN each swim 1 lap of the pool, swimmers will be starting from both ends. The first and third swimmers need to be at the starting block end of the pool. Second and Forth swimmers need to be at the opposite end of the pool.
  • (6&UN do not have a relay event. However, a 6&UN may be needed to swim on the 8&UN relay team.)
  • After the relays are the IM events. All of your 8&un swimmers entered in IM should be behind the blocks when the older kids (13-14, 15-18) are swimming their relays

Please return your clipboards to the Away Meet plastic bin. Remind all your kids to throw away their trash and pick up their area. It will be dark, so remind parents to check carefully for all items. If you find left over goggles, towels etc., pick them up and bring them to the next practice.

Thanks for all your help and do not hesitate to call on the parents of your charges to help with unruly swimmers or misbehaving ones!

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