Swim Team FAQs
Swim Team FAQs

How do I register my child for the swim team?


If you have not already done so, you must first be a Parkcrest member. A family membership is required for swim team membership.


Click “Register Online” from the swim team website. If you were a previous Parkcrest member, log in with your previous username and password. If you are a new member, create a new account (this will be a separate account from the one you used to pay your Parkcrest membership). Enter all required family information and click “Add Member” for each swim team participant. Register individual members for swim team by clicking the appropriate choice for “register to this group”. Read and acknowledge the waivers, and submit your payment.  Register by the Early Registration deadline (May 14, 2023) and receive the 2023 PC Team Shirt.


How much does swim team cost?


1st child: $165 (or $215 for swim and dive)

2nd child: $165 (or $215 for swim and dive)

3rd and all subsequent children: $100 (or $150 for swim and dive)


Can my child be on both swim and dive teams?




What are the swimming requirements for swim team?


Swimmers should be able to safely get from one side of the pool to the other (without walking and using the wall) and be comfortable in the deep end.


Should my child continue to take swim lessons if they are on the swim team?


Yes! Swim lessons are a great tool for working on the four competitive strokes.


What are the cutoffs for age groups?


The age of your child on June 1st determines the age at which your child will compete for the entire season. If your child turns 9 on June 2nd, they would still be considered an 8 & under for the swim season.


What distances do the age groups swim?


8 & Unders swim 25 meters (one length of the pool), for all strokes, except IM which is 100 meters

9-10s and 11-12s swim 50 meters (two lengths), for all strokes, except IM which is 100 meters

13-14s swim 50 meter butterfly, 100 meters of all other strokes, and 100 meter IM

15-18s swim 100 meters for all strokes, except IM which is 200 meters


Does my child have to attend every practice?


Your child should attend as many practices as work for your family.


Do parents need to stay during practice?


No. If you’d like to observe practice, we ask that all parents stay off the pool deck and watch from the upper deck or the grassy area outside the fence.


Does practice get canceled if it rains?


Practice is only canceled if there is heavy rain, strong storms, or thunder and lightning.


What are my volunteer requirements?


All families are required to complete one volunteer shift per home meet. These shifts can happen at any time during the season (for instance a family with two volunteers could each work two shifts during a single meet and fulfill their commitment). If you anticipate difficulty fulfilling your volunteer shifts during meets, please contact a parent rep early in the season to help find a way to volunteer outside of meets. If it is impossible to fulfill your shifts, we do offer a buyout option at $50/shift, but we would truly prefer your volunteer time. Home swim meets can only happen if we have sufficient volunteers to run them.


Do I need to volunteer if my child is not swimming meets?


Yes, we need all our families to complete their volunteer commitment.


Is a team suit required?


No, your swimmer can swim in any swimwear. Many team members do choose to purchase a team suit and/or cap.  While they are not inexpensive, they are very high quality and hold up to a summer of daily practice.


Where do I get a team suit?


Simply Swimming in Middleton is your home for all Parkcrest suits, caps, and other clothing. They’d also be happy to fit your child for goggles.


How do I sign up for meets?


We use an opt out system for all meets. The default is that your child will be swimming meets and if you choose not to swim a meet, you need to opt out of the meet. Opt out deadlines for each meet are communicated in weekly swim meet emails.


It is very important that you opt out of any meets your swimmer will not attend by the deadline. Our coaches put a lot of effort into making sure that as many children as possible get to swim relays and late opt-outs and no shows make this very difficult.


To opt out of a meet, locate the link for the meet on the swim team website or OnDeck app. Click on the Member Names (they default to “Committed”). Then click on the Signup Record pull-down and select “No” and click “save changes”.


Does my child need to swim every meet?


No. You choose which meets your child swims. They can choose to swim no meets at all or every meet. There is a three regular season meet requirement to be eligible to swim All City.


How do I pick my child’s events?


The Parkcrest coaches will choose events for each child. Your child will probably rotate through all the events within their abilities over the course of the summer. The coaches will also arrange relays and will do their best to place all swimmers on a relay team.


Warmups are very early, does my child really need to get to a meet that early?


It’s very important that your swimmer is at the pool, ready to swim when warmups begin. If a child misses warmups, they may be pulled from their relays. If for any reason, a swimmer will be late or unable to attend a meet, please notify your coach via email as soon as possible.


What do swimmers need for swim meets?


The only requirements are a swim suit and goggles. If your child has a team suit or cap, it’s the ideal time to wear them! It can be nice to have extra towels, warm clothes, and healthy snacks for time between events. Some families like to bring a blanket or shade tent.


What is a heat sheet?


A heat sheet is the program for the swim meet. It lists all the events, swimmers, and lane assignments for each race.


What are the permanent marker marks on swimmers’ arms?


Many swimmers benefit from having their events written down where they cannot lose the information. It also helps the volunteers wrangle the younger swimmers in Clerk of Course.


What is Clerk of Course?


It’s an area where home team volunteers stage the 10 and under swimmers to ensure they are ready to swim when it’s their turn. There will be signs or announcements of events that are being staged. Swimmers 11 and up are responsible for getting themselves to the starting blocks in time.


What does DQ mean?


It means that a swimmer has been disqualified in their event. The officials watch to make sure that starts, strokes, turns, and finishes are all performed according to the rules. Every swimmer gets DQs at some point in their swimming career. It’s very common for younger swimmers. A swimmer will not receive an official time or place ribbon for a DQ.


Who gets ribbons?


Heat winner ribbons are awarded to the fastest swimmer or relay in each heat. 1st-6th ribbons are awarded to the 6 fastest swimmers or relays in each race. Since there may be multiple heats per race, a swimmer may win a heat but not a place ribbon. Many pools will have “my first meet” or participation ribbons for young swimmers- ask! If a swimmer doesn’t collect their ribbons at a meet, they can be found the next week in the family folders in the guard shack.


What is the All-City Swim Meet?


The All-City Swim Meet is the end of season championship meet for all of the swimmers in the All-City League. It’s a three day outdoor event hosting nearly 2000 swimmers and is one of the biggest meets in the country. All swimmers who swim at least three regular meets qualify to participate in All-City.


What are Penguin Fun Nights and What are Penguin Buddies?


Penguin Buddies are groups of three or more swimmers, of varying ages, assigned by the coaches, who get to know each other during the activities of the Penguin Fun Nights. Penguin buddies cheer each other on during swim meets, gift each other small, motivational treats, and more experienced Penguin Buddies (and their families) are often a good resource for beginner teammates.


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Parkcrest Swim & Tennis, 1 N Yellowstone Dr, Madison, WI 53705

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