Galas - Club Championships

The Club Championships are our main competitive events of the year and involve everyone - swimmers, coaches, officials and parents. The Championships comprises of two events: the Summer Sprints and the Winter Event.

The overall objective for each swimmer is to improve on their personal best times. The ASA competitive swimming award badges are based on national time standards. These standards are not age restricted; however, the correct stroke must be swum (technique + speed = success!). To gain an ASA award it doesn't matter where you come in your race, you just have to achieve the time and stroke criteria.

The Wey Valley Club Championships are ASA licensed in order for the times swum to be recognised by the ASA and to enable them to be used as entry times for the following years Surrey Championships. They are therefore held under ASA Technical Rules with all officials being qualified for their respective roles. The decision of the referee is final. The club itself does not and cannot make decisions regarding ASA competition rules or results.

Please read the Frequently Asked Questions about the club champs, ask your coach/teacher for advice and get training now!

Summer Sprints

The Summer Sprints run on one date in June or July and is an opportunity for all swimmers in the Wey Valley PreComp, Junior and Senior Squads to gain or improve their times for 50m swims. It is expected that all Junior and Senior Squad swimmers will attend and will swim four events: 50m of each stroke (Backstroke, Breaststroke, Butterfly, Freestyle). PreComp will swim three events: 50m of Backstroke, Breaststroke, Freestyle.

A medal will be given to the Boy/Girl winner in each age group for each stroke.

Age Groups

Age groups will be: 9 and under (9U), 10yrs, 11yrs, 12yrs, 13yrs, 14+ yrs with age as on the day of the competition.

Winter Event and Age Group Cup

Event revised in 2012. In 2012 a revised set of events for the 'Winter Event' was agreed; retaining the Age Group Cup competition but significantly changing the format and points system from previous years. Junior and Adult Fitness continue to swim in the Winter Event and be eligible for medals but no longer compete for Age Group Cups

The Winter Event is run over several dates in November/December for all members of: PreComp, Junior and Senior Squads, Junior and Adult Fitness, and selected other swimmers by invitation. Swimmers are invited to enter into events according to their squad and age as at 31 December of that year. No other combination of events/distances will be swum. Bronze, Silver and Gold medals are awarded to boys/girls in each age group in each event. Swimmers who obtain the same time in an event will be placed in equal position and all lower placed swimmers will have their positions adjusted accordingly. The competition takes place instead of lane training and all training is cancelled at these dates/times.

Club Awards and Recognition Ceremony

The club awards a number of trophies, including the Most Improved Boy and Girl of the year, to swimmers who have excelled in each of the strokes (not necessarily the fastest ie this may be for a notable improvement during the year). The club also rewards service to the club in the form of the Presidents Trophy. When making these awards the Head Coach considers the individual's commitment to the club in the fullest sense e.g. effort, performance, team commitment, attitude, difficulty of the challenge etc. The Age Cups are also presented and commendations are awarded to swimmers in both the Teaching and competitive parts of the the club who have attracted the attention of their teachers for effort, attitude and progress at any level/age during the year.

Age Group Cup Competition

Within the Winter Event the Age Group Cup competition is run for swimmers in PreComp, Junior and Senior Squads and selected other swimmers by invitation. It is designed to reward all round performance and therefore includes a range of strokes over distances applicable nationally for the age of the swimmer.

Participation in the Age Group Cup competition is automatic by swimming in the range of events designated for the relevant age group - see 'Winter Event' for relevant year below. There are separate Age Cup competitions for boys and girls with points awarded as per the events and scoring system described below. Cups are awarded to the Winner and Runner Up in each Age Group, subject to sufficent numbers entering. The winner of each Age Group Cup will be the swimmer with the most points from the relevant swims after the last event has been swum. In the event of a points tie for the winner, priority will be given to the swimmer with the faster 50m/100m Freestyle time. The Runner Up cup will be shared between swimmers with equal points.

Age Group Cup Eligibility

A swimmer must be a fully paid member of the club (training fees paid and correctly ASA registered) before 1st May in the year of competition to be eligible for an Age Cup. This rule is to prevent a swimmer joining a club solely for the purpose of competing in a particular competition, winning the silver ware and leaving immediately thereafter never to be seen or heard of again! New joiners are eligible for medals and every swimmer taking part receives a certificate showing their achievements.

An ASA dual club member is eligible for an Age Cup only if they fulfil the above criteria, train regularly with WV and are available to be selected for galas (in some circumstance, this may require Wey Valley to be registered with the ASA as First Claim club). Any dual club member who is ineligible for the Age Group Cups will still be eligible for medals as long as they train regularly with WV (training fees paid and correctly ASA registered) and are available for gala selection.

Awarding of points for Age Group Cup competition

In 2013 it is proposed that Hytek software will be used to run the Club Championship so Age Group Cup points will be based on the standard FINA points system for each eligible event/distance.

Junior and Adult Fitness swimmers are ineligible for the Age Group Cup competition.

Points Scoring events by Age Group:

Age Cup total points scored will be the sum of points for the following events only in each Age Group.

U9U10U11U12U13U14, U16, Open
25m Free50m Free50m Free100m Free100m Free100m Free
25m Back
25m Breast
25m Fly
50m Back
50m Breast
25m Fly
Best three scores from:
50m Back
50m Breast
50m Fly
100m IM
Best three scores from:
50m Back
50m Breast
50m Fly
100m IM
Best three scores from:
100m Back
100m Breast
50m Fly
100m IM
Best three scores from:
100m Back
100m Breast
100m Fly
100m IM
200m Free200m Free200m Free200m Free200m Free
200m Choice200m Choice200m Choice

Note: Junior and Adult Fitness do not compete in the Age Group Cup Competition

2015 Winter Event

The table shows the 2015 events for each Squad/Age Group and the date/time these take place.

  • No other combination of events/distances will be swum.
  • In order to maximise the pool usage mixed gender heats may be run in some events.
  • 200m Free for U9 and 400m Free for all are non Age Cup events ie do not contribute to the swimmers Age Cup points totals.
  • Junior and Adult Fitness are eligible for medals but will not compete for Age Group Cups.

All training is cancelled at these dates/times

Squad/Age GrpSun 15 Nov
5:00 - 7:00 pm
Godalming
Sun 22 Nov
4:00 - 7:00 pm
Godalming
Sat 5 Dec
4:00 - 7:00 pm
Spectrum
U9200m Free25m Free
25m Back
25m Breast
25m Fly
U10200m Free50m Free
50m Back
50m Breast
25m Fly
U11100m IM
200m Free
50m Free
50m Back
50m Breast
50m Fly
U12200m Fly or
200m Back or
200m Breast or
200m IM
100m IM
200m Free
100m Free
plus two from:
50m Back
50m Breast
50m Fly
U13200m Fly or
200m Back or
200m Breast or
200m IM
100m IM
200m Free
100m Free
plus two from:
100m Back
100m Breast
50m Fly
U14, U16,Open200m Fly or
200m Back or
200m Breast or
200m IM
100m IM
200m Free
100m Free
plus two from:
100m Back
100m Breast
100m Fly
Junior Fitness
(all age groups)
200m Free50m Free
50m Back
50m Breast
Adult Fitness
(Masters)
100m IM
200m Free
Three from:
50m Free
50m Back
50m Breast
50m Fly

There is a 20 minute warm up period, included in the timings, at the start of each day's event.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I know when I am swimming my race?

After you have arrived and changed, report to your Age Group Steward on poolside. There will be signs on the wall to show you where to go. Your steward will have details of you and your race schedule. Your steward is there to answer all your questions and to make sure you are in the right place at the right time. Once you have checked in with your steward you must follow their instructions.

What do I need to bring with me?

Swimming costume, hat, goggles, T-shirt, track suit bottoms, a bottle of plain water or juice (no fizzy drinks, no cans, no glass), energy tablets (but no other food, sweets or gum), inhaler (for asthmatics), towel, poolside shoes (flip flops are best since trainers react with the chlorine and smell horrible!). Bring your bag onto poolside with you don't leave it in the changing room.

Can I bring friends/family to watch?

Yes, but there is a limit on how many spectators we can allow in the pool for health and safety reasons. Your supporters must not wear outdoor shoes inside the pool. It will be crowded, hot and noisy so they must be dressed appropriately to survive the "hostile" conditions. Please don't bring babies, toddlers, animals or shopping bags! Spectators will not be allowed into the pool before the starting time if there are classes going on before the races begin. There is no point turning up early in the hope of getting a ringside seat!

Do you need help?

Yes we always need parent helpers – please contact either Stuart Galvin or Chris Michael to volunteer your services now. Roles include timekeeping, writing out certificates, handing out programmes, serving drinks to officials, keeping track of results, announcements, stewarding and lots more!

How do I know if I have won a medal or an award?

You will swim your race in a heat (maximum of 6 swimmers) of similar ability but because other swimmers in your age group competition may be swimming in other heats, the positions (1st, 2nd etc) in the heat won't tell you whether you have won your age group. You will only find this out at the end of the session when all the heats have been swum. The results of your age group will be posted afterwards (on the wall) this will record the official time of your swim. After the event the results will be posted on the website and if you were disqualified, it will give the reason why. You can work out if you have achieved an ASA speed award by comparing your official time with the standards on the notice board or website.

How do I get my ASA speed award?

After each session, the event organisers take all the results away and prepare a results sheet for each event. This will be available on the website within a few days. If you gain an official time (i.e. you are not disqualified) and it is faster than a previous time, the database of personal best times on the website will be updated too. Once your result has been published you can purchase your speed award badge from the Website shop.

How do I get my medal?

If there is sufficient time at the end of the last race in each session there will be a medal presentation ceremony. If not presented at this time, the medals will be presented at the next session or next most suitable training session. If you are not there for the ceremony you won't be presented with your medal and you won't get your photograph taken for the website winners gallery. However, your medal will be kept for you to claim at a later time.

How do I know if I have won an Age Group cup?

Cups are only awarded for the Age Group Cup competition and are presentd at the annual awards ceremony.

How do I know if I have won one of the other annual club awards?

The Head Coach and the Chairman will announce who has won the annual club awards at the awards ceremony. There are cups for each stroke and for improvement at all levels. These awards take account of your work throughout the year, anyone from a beginner to an adult, may receive an award. You have to be there to find out!

I didn't win a medal or an award what do I get?

The Main aim of the Club Championship events is for swimmers to gain Personal Best times and they should be congratulated on achieving these. Everyone who takes part in the Age Group Cup event receives a certificate of achievement. Certificates are presented at the awards ceremony and record the stroke, distance and time of your swim(s). You may also have won a commendation prize but you need to be there to find out!

I think a mistake has been made with the results of my race?

If you think the results of a race are wrong you must wait until the last race in the whole session has been swum, then you must report your concern to the Referee. Nobody else can amend the race results so do not ask the people on the recorders desk. The Referees decision is final. If you need help explaining your concern to the Referee you should speak to a Coach (somewhere on poolside) and ask him/her to speak to the Referee on your behalf. Only the swimmer or the Head Coach can appeal a result. (Parents, please note, if you think a mistake has been made, don't tell your swimmer speak instead to a Coach (not to any other official on poolside because they will be very busy with other tasks and the whole event will be held up if they are distracted). The coach will advise you and if necessary talk to the Referee on your behalf. Be certain of things before you worry a swimmer (dare we say it but parents can sometimes be wrong!)

What is a disqualification?

The technical rules of swimming are there to ensure that competitions are fair. For example, different strokes are faster or slower than each other therefore, it isn't fair if somebody swims frontcrawl in a breastroke race. Generally speaking, if a swimmer uses the correct stroke, start and turn technique they will be faster than somebody who doesn't, therefore, success = technique plus speed. This is particularly so over distances longer than 25m.

A young swimmer who is rewarded for speed only is being given a false expectation of their potential. Being disqualified can be upsetting to a young swimmer but it is very important that they understand sooner rather than later about points of technique they have yet to master. It is very difficult to correct a bad habit later in their swimming career.

Parents, your attitude towards disqualifications is very important to your swimmer. Swimmers need positive feedback - if they are disqualified they need praise for taking part and doing their best and they need encouragement to then go and speak to their teacher/coach to ask what they need to learn. Ask any senior swimmer and they will recount the story of their first disqualification and how beneficial it was to them in the longer term! (Note: the skills of stroke, start and turns are taught continuously during training sessions; however, it is often only under race conditions that we can tell as teachers/coaches whether or not a child has fully assimilated these skills).

What is the One Start Rule?

At the start of the race, on the preparatory command "Take your Marks" the swimmer shall immediately take up a starting position with at least one foot at the front of the starting block (or poolside), when all swimmers are stationary, the starter gives the starting signal. For a backstroke race the starting position is in the water but otherwise the same principal applies. If a swimmer is moving at the time the starting signal is given they will be disqualified at the end of the race. Historically a swimmer was allowed one false start, this is no longer the case. However, a race may still be recalled and restarted, if it was deemed to be an unfair start i.e. a problem occurred at the start that wasn't the fault of a swimmer e.g. the signal equipment sounded incorrectly. Technically swimmers need to understand that they should get into position quickly and then stay absolutely still until the signal is given. (Note: Ask any senior swimmer and they will tell you that when another swimmer moves on the block adjacent to them it is very distracting - doing this deliberately to put off the opposition is the unfair practice that the one start rule aims to stop!).

I can't yet dive off the block? I can't yet dive at all?

Don't worry - you can start your race from the side of the pool or in the water. When you go up for your race there will be a starter's steward who will find out how you want to start and organise this for you with the Referee/Starter.

I've never swum this distance/stroke before?

Don't worry - the swimmers in your race are all at the same standard and level of experience as you, they may look bigger or smaller than you but that's not important. You are there because your teacher/coach thinks you are ready to swim at the level of the heat. Remember you are swimming to get your own time, it doesn't matter where anyone comes in the race - just have a go and surprise yourself!

How do I finish a breastroke or butterfly race?

You must touch the wall with both hands simultaneously. If there is a rail at the end of the pool, you must touch with both hands on the rail OR both hands on the wall (not one hand on rail and one hand on wall).

How do I finish a backstroke race?

You must be on your back – don't turn over onto your front to touch the wall (because you would then be swimming frontcrawl in a backcrawl race!). To help you know when the end of the pool is coming up there are flags across the pool. You should be looking out for these flags and when you go under them you should start counting your arm pulls so you know where the wall is. You should have practiced this in your training sessions and you should know your number of arm pulls to the finish. During the warm up before your backstroke race remember to check your arm pull number (and then remember it).

Why are there so many rules for a breastroke or butterfly race?

These strokes are more technically demanding. In breastroke the elbows must be underwater all the time. Butterfly is the newest stroke and was invented originally as a faster version of breastroke – in this stroke both arms must clear the water. The arms in both strokes must move simultaneously. In breastroke, the legs must move simultaneously and be in the same plane as each other. The feet must be turned outwards in the propulsive phase of the kick. In butterfly the legs must move up and down simultaneously, there must be no alternating kick (such as in frontcrawl). In breastroke, it is allowed (for reasons of speed) for a swimmer to pull their arms back beyond the hip line at the first stroke after the start and after each turn. It is also permitted for there to be one natural downbeat of the legs (dolphin kick) when the swimmer leaves the wall after a turn. However, the swimmer is only allowed one normal kick to get them to the water surface. All these rules define the stroke and to win medals in that stroke, it is self evident that the swimmer must perform the stroke correctly.

My race is longer than 25m so how do I turn?

You are allowed to touch the end of the pool and then set off again without doing a tumble turn. However, when turning this way you must not put your feet down on the pool floor (this would be standing or walking not swimming), you should plant your feet on the wall to push off. Also when you touch the wall with your hands it must in the same way as you would finish the race (on your back in backstroke, 2 hands for breastroke and butterfly).

Why do some swimmers tumble turn?

In a frontcrawl or a backcrawl race a tumble turn is the fastest way to turn (that's why we teach it).

If a tumble turn is fastest why don't we practice it more in training?

We (the teacher's and coaches) make it possible for you to practice your tumble turns in every lane training session! The warm up consists of frontcrawl and/or backcrawl, this is a continuous swim with turns. Most sessions include other sets of work on front or backcrawl – you should tumble turn in these sets too. In every session there is a contrast activity towards the end, the skills you practice here all underpin good starts and turns. The only way to get good at tumbling is to try it at every opportunity – that means every training session!

Can I be disqualified on a frontcrawl turn?

You will only get disqualified on a tumble turn if once you have tumbled you then don't touch the wall with at least one foot (called missing the wall).

Can I be disqualified on a backcrawl turn?

When doing a backcrawl turn you first turn onto your front, then you tumble. Because this is a backstroke race, once you have turned onto your front you must not swim on your front, you must drop your head to roll immediately. If you use either your arms or your legs at this stage you are swimming frontcrawl in a backcrawl race. If you turn onto your front too soon, you can't then glide towards the wall you must start pulling your arm to initiate the turn straightaway. And finally, when you come out of the turn underwater and push off the wall you must be on your back. As you can see this turn requires practice, practice, practice!!!

What is the secret to a good tumble turn?

Speed – most errors are caused by the swimmer slowing down during the approach, you should swim fast into a turn (and also out of the turn).

What is the Individual Medley Race?

In this race you swim each stroke in a set order – Butterfly, Backstroke, Breastroke, Frontcrawl. In a 100m IM you swim 25m of each stroke. In a 200m IM you swim 50m of each stroke.

Does the IM race have any special rules?

No - you swim each stroke according to the rules for that stroke. However, there is a common mistake that swimmers make in IM races and that concerns the turn at the end of the backstroke leg (going into the breastroke). You cannot do a backcrawl tumble turn here because you are finishing the backstroke and so you must touch on your back (if you tumbled you would be on your front). In the 200 IM event, when you swim 50m of backstroke you can do a tumble turn at the end of the first length but not at the end of the second length. (Note: there is a special turn that you may see senior swimmers doing during the IM event, this is the back to breast turn, where the swimmer touches on their back and then tumbles backwards. Some swimmers find this quicker, others do not, this is an advanced optional skill that is learnt only after a swimmer has mastered the basic tumble turns).

What happens at the end of a race?

You are requested to stay in the water until the Referee blows the whistle to release you from their control. This is for reasons of safety and checking results (e.g. a query about which swimmer is in a given lane). It is no longer the case that you will be disqualified for leaving the water immediately the race has ended.

What other safety rules must I obey?

You must stay in your own lane when you are swimming your race. When you are not swimming your race, you must not sit on the edge of the pool with your feet in the water, nor must you throw or drop anything into the water. You can also be disqualified for bad behaviour of any kind, this is especially so if anything you do affects or is intended to affect another swimmer.

Can I go and see my parents when I've swum my race?

No – after your race you go back to your steward. Your steward must know where you are at all times. You must ask your steward before you disappear for any reason. Parents, please make it very clear to your swimmer that the changing rooms are not play areas, your child will be asked to leave the club if they are found to be involved in such practices as stuffing loo rolls into cisterns or hiding other swimmer's clothes etc. Regrettably, this sort of thing happens. Make sure your child isn't responsible – we don't take sides, everyone caught in the changing rooms during such an incident will be considered equally responsible because none of them should have been there in the first place!

What do I do if a disgruntled parent tells me that the club has treated them unfairly e.g. the swimmer in question missed out on winning the age cup or a medal due to being disqualified in one race?

Regrettably there is always one swimmer each year who makes a mistake which costs him or her a medal or cup. The swimmer will receive support and feedback from the coaching team so that in time the experience becomes a positive learning process for the swimmer. Initially however the swimmer will be very disappointed and this can be made considerably worse for the swimmer when parental expectations are inappropriate. We advise that you do not become involved in such conversations as this only makes the situation worse for the swimmer. Instead please bring the matter to the attention of the Referee on pool side or, if it is after the event, to the club welfare officer.

Results

From 2008 the Wey Valley Club championships have been licensed meets with the time swum submitted to the ASA to be included on the British Swimming website in the Resutls & Ranking sections. However it's not easy to navigate to from their home page so links as follows. You can view your licensed meet times either as a list of Individual Personal Best Times or as a list of Individual Rankings ie where you are ranked against other swimmers.

The 2013 Winter Event was the first event run using Hytek Meet Manager software. Results for this and subsequent WV Club Championship events will therefore be published in files produced by Hytek rather than a seachable database.

Upcoming Events

DateEvent
23 SepRother League round 2
30 SepJunior Cup
14 OctNational Arena League round 1

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