If you're like us, before we joined swim team we didn't have a clue what it was all about besides "there are swim practices and meets." Like everything, there's more to it than that.
The Dale City Frogs are an all-inclusive team. You don't try out to make the team, you join and are put in an appropriate practice group. When we came Stateside last year it's what I wanted, for everyone to have a physical activity they could enjoy and improve in. Sure, some competitiveness comes out too but let's face it, aside from a rare few you'd be hard-pressed to find all the siblings in one family excelling all-together in a single sport. Because it's all-inclusive, the Frogs are far from the highest ranked team. We have plenty of slow... really slow... swimmers (see: Jonathon) who still continue to improve their personal best times each week.
At each meet there are 3 timers per lane and through some magical formula a final time is figured. Kids earn ribbons by winning their heat, by beating their personal best time, and by ranking in the top 12 at the meet. Points are earned by the top 12 swimmers across both teams, the lower the time the higher the points. At the end of the meet the team with the most points wins the meet.
Certain times earn rankings in the Prince William Swim League. For example for the 11/12 Girls 50 Free, a B time is between 37.62s-41.69s, and an A time is anything under 37.61s. The whole list of times can be found on the PWSL by-laws on page 14, if you're curious.
Each team, according to their swimmer speeds and overall point earnings is slotted into a Division. This year the Frogs are in the Yellow Division along with our own neighborhood Montclair as well as Dominion Valley. We'll be competing against both of them this Saturday at our final meet, Divisionals.
So there you go, a quick rundown of what's been taking up our time the past 8 weeks.