Welcome to the 2023 Cool Sharks Summer Swim Team!
WELCOME TO THE 2023 COOL SHARKS SUMMER SWIM TEAM!
Please read the entire email below for important information about our summer swim team (there is a lot).
COACHES - We have a lot of new coaches this season! Head Coach Mike and Assistant Head Coach Rebekah are back again this summer (see their bios here: https://coolsharks.swimtopia.com/coaches). They will be joined by Assistant Coaches Liam, Sky, Giacomo, and Fiona; Senior Coaches Will, Delia, Sarah, Lewis, and Margaret; and Junior Coaches Chloe, Robert, Owen, Annie, Daniela, Charlotte, Zoe, Elizabeth, and Emily.
WEBSITE - If you haven't had the chance, please take a good look around our website (https://coolsharks.swimtopia.com/). This is where you will go for general information about the team. Please do not rely on the app for information - very little actual info is posted there and often without critical details. There is a lot of important information on our website, including dates and schedules, swimsuit information, and our weather and volunteer policies. Our meet schedule is also now posted, along with a lot of helpful information about how meets work. The most important place you will go on the website is the Meet/Event Calendar (https://coolsharks.swimtopia.com/swim_meets). This is where you will sign up for meets and volunteer jobs, find directions and warm-up times, and where meet entries, heat sheets, and results will be posted. This is also where you will RSVP for team parties and volunteer to help or bring items. Be sure to look at all the different tabs and drop down menus to make sure you're getting all the information and know where to find answers when you have questions. Many of the questions we get during the season (and we get a lot!) have answers which can be found on the website - please take a few minutes to search for answers there before emailing us.
APP - Be sure you have downloaded the SwimTopia app! The app is great for receiving notifications of team alerts (practice cancellations, weather-related issues, etc. - be sure you have notifications enabled). You can also view your swimmers' times and keep track of what jobs you've signed up for.
PRACTICES - Practices will start Monday May 1st. We do not have regular practice Memorial Weekend, although we usually add a special practice the morning of Memorial Day. Our June/Summer practice schedule will start the day after Memorial Day. Practice schedules are on the website at https://coolsharks.swimtopia.com/practice-schedule. Swimmers may attend as many or as few practices as they would like. There are no sign ups just come when you can.
All swimmers must attend practice with their assigned age group. We cannot honor requests for siblings or friends to swim together. Also keeping the age groups together is good for the team - think of each age group as a team within a team. The age groups compete together at meets so it is important for the coaches to see them together to decide who should swim which events or be on which relays. And it is important for the kids to get to know each other as teammates. Advanced swimmers should not "swim up" and struggling swimmers should not "swim down" - instead the coaches will work to provide them with an appropriate workout within their age group. Pease email [email protected] if you have questions or concerns about this.
As a reminder, parents will not be allowed inside the pool during practice while the pool is closed - you will drop your child off at the entrance and pick them up at the gate to the field. Parents you are welcome to observe practice from outside the fence but please do not try to speak with your swimmer or the coaches during practice. It is very important that the coaches are able to focus on the swimmers (and the swimmers on the coaches) without distractions. If you have something you would like to discuss with the coach, please email [email protected] to contact Coach Mike.
COOL SHARKS KICK-OFF - Don't forget our Cool Sharks Kick-Off party on Saturday May 6th! Please see the Meet/Event Calendar for more information or to RSVP or sign up to volunteer: https://coolsharks.swimtopia.com/swim_meets
MEETS - The 2023 schedule is now posted on the Meet/Event Calendar at https://coolsharks.swimtopia.com/swim_meets. We have 5 Dual Meets scheduled, the first two of which will be HOME meets, then two away meets, and then a final home meet (and our Senior Night). We'll end the season with the ASA Championship at Georgia Tech! This meet is open to ALL swimmers, and we would love to have everyone attend! We have some strong teams in our division this year - please make every effort to be at the Championship so we can defend our title :).
Remember that meet attendance is now an expectation for our team (the Cool Sharks are a competitive swim team not a lesson program). Swimmers who don't attend any meets this season will not be allowed to register early next season.
SWIMSUITS & EQUIPMENT - All swimmers are strongly encouraged to purchase a team swimsuit to wear for meets (see information below). We have a new team suit this year, but swimmers are welcome to continue to wear their old suit if it still fits. Swimmers may wear their team suit or a different suit for practice. No swim shirts please! These really slow your child down and make it difficult to learn to swim properly.
Swimmers should wear their Garden Hills swim caps for meets (swim caps will be provided for each swimmer as part of their registration fees - see TEAM GEAR below). Caps are optional for practice but long hair should be tied back and out of your swimmer's face (be sure to have extra hair ties in your bag).
A good pair of goggles is a MUST for both practice and meets. No snorkel masks or play goggles please. Nothing is more discouraging for a young swimmer than a poorly-fitted leaky pair of goggles. TYR Swimple and Speedo Skoogles or Hydrospex are good brands for young swimmers. Older swimmers need competition goggles such as Speedo Vanquisher, TYR Blackhawk or Blackops, Arena Tracks, Nike Vapor or Legacy, or similar. Goggles can be found locally at Dick's Sporting Goods (the Lenox store has a great selection), online at Amazon or SwimOutlet, or purchased at the fitting on May 6th or online through our team swimsuit vendor (see below).
For more information swimsuits and on other equipment needed for our team, please see https://coolsharks.swimtopia.com/team-swimwear.
TEAM GEAR - All swimmers will receive a drawstring bag with a personalized swim cap, a team t-shirt, and a team bag tag - we are planning to hand these out during the Cool Sharks Kick-Off on May 6th or they can be picked up at practice the following week.
WEATHER POLICY - We will swim in the rain! Unless there is lightning or thunder, practice will go on as scheduled. If practice is cancelled, you will receive a notification from SwimTopia (be sure you have notifications enabled in your SwimTopia app or you will only receive an email). Please see https://coolsharks.swimtopia.com/weather-policy for our full weather policy.