Team Gala’s

How do I get selected for a gala?
Swimmers are selected by the Coach(es) taking into account the standard of competition, age, ability of the swimmer and the amount of training the swimmer attends.

How do I know if I have been selected for a gala?
A team sheet emailed out to swimmers and normally displayed on the notice board at Exe Valley Leisure Centre.. The notice will give details of the gala: Date, Venue and Time of the Warm Up and Start Time of the Gala. Most Galas are held on a Saturday evening.

How do I let the coach know that I can or cannot swim?
All swimmers selected should tick or cross their name as soon as possible after the team sheet is displayed.

I ticked my name showing I was available to swim but now I cannot swim, what should I do?
You must let the Team Manager or Coach know as soon as possible. Swimmers must also remember that once they have confirmed to swim for the club they should do so. An obvious exception to this is if the swimmer is ill. By withdrawing from a gala you have already confirmed availability for are preventing someone from swimming.

What event(s) will I swim in at the gala?
Swimmers are normally told the event(s) they are swimming on the evening of the gala. Swimmers must be expected to swim any stroke, any distance.

How do I know when the galas are being held?
A fixture list is available on the website and is also on the noticeboard on poolside and in  the spectator gallery at Exe Valley Leisure Centre. This is updated throughout the year.

I have been selected for a gala. How do I found out where the pool is?
The team sheet will have details on the pool and the postcode. Use a search engine on the internet to find directions to the pool

I am competing in a gala or open meet. Should I miss training?
Swimmers should only miss training due to illness or injury and on the advice of the Coach. Missing training prior to an event could have an adverse effect on the results achieved.

I have been selected for a gala. What do I need to bring?
All swimmers should bring with them: Warm-up costume/trunks, racing costume/trunks, 2 towels, goggles, hat, snacks, drink, shorts and TSC top to wear pool side when not racing.

What is the difference between a racing costume and warm up costume and why do I need both?
Racing costume/trunks should only be used to race in. They should be a very tight fit to reduce the effect of drag. It should be noted that a club hat should always be worn. A warm up costume can be of any make/colour, it does not need to be a tight fit, when a swimmer has warmed up they should change into their race costume.

I have been selected to swim in a gala on a Saturday evening but I am swimming in an Open Meet on the Sunday, should I miss the gala or the open meet?
No you should not miss the gala or open meet, but do both competitions. Galas take precedence over Open Meets. The club enter several galas each year and these need the support of all club swimmers. Sometimes the Head Coach will not select those competing in an Open Meet the day after a gala, it depends a lot on the importance of the gala/open meet.

Open Meet

How do I know which times I can use to enter an open meet or championship?
All conditions re entry into all competitions are displayed on the Promoters Conditions for the competition, these can be found in the information sent out to you by the competition secretary or by visiting the individual open meet website

How do I know which events to enter at an Open Meet?
The general advice is that you should always try to enter a range of events and between 2 and 3 events per session depending upon your level of fitness and experience. It may be that you have entered the competition to gain qualifying times for a higher level event – then only enter those events. This is a complex area and swimmers should seek advice from a coach.

How do I withdraw from an event at an Open Meet or Championship?
You must let the promoter (organiser) of the competition know as soon as possible. Sometimes this is done by completing a withdrawal form. Further information is normally contained in the promoter’s conditions. At some competitions failure to notify the organizers will result in a financial penalty and you could be prevented from taking part in any further events.

I am competing in a gala or open meet. Should I miss training?
Swimmers should only miss training due to illness or injury and on the advice of the Coach. Missing training prior to an event could have an adverse effect on the results achieved.

How do I know which Open Meets I should enter?
By referring to the fixture list, Open meets are graded from Level 4 to Level 1 (Level 1 being for very good swimmers). Also by reviewing the entry times/standard. If all else fails seek the advice of a coach.

What is the difference between a Gala, an Open Meet and Championship?

  • A Gala is a competition normally between 4 and 8 clubs. They can be league, trophy, novice and friendly galas. Some galas have more than I round. The most important gala the club competes in is the Arena National League. The swimmers to compete are selected by the coaching staff.
  • An Open Meet is a competition organised by one club which invites swimmers from all clubs to enter. There are normally qualifying times and the fastest swimmers are those normally accepted. This is why Open Meets are graded, Level 4 to Level 1. This prevents Level 1 swimmers entering a Level 4 Open Meet.
  • Championships are held at County, District and National Level and all have qualifying times that must be achieved prior to entry.

I am entering the Club Championships for the first time. What events should I enter?
As a minimum you should enter the 50m Freestyle, 50m of another stroke, 200m Freestyle, 200m of another stroke and the 100m Individual Medley. The club championships is a Level 4 Meet and times achieved can be used to qualify for the County Championships so you should enter events that you need to get qualifying times for.

What is the difference between a Long Course (LC) and Short Course (SC) time?
A LC time is one that is set/achieved in a 50m Pool, a SC time is one that is set/achieved in a 25m Pool.

How do I convert a LC (50m) time to a SC (25m) time and SC to LC?
By using the ASA Equivalent Performance Tables

What times can I use to enter an Open Meet or Championship?
Prior to entering any event you must read the conditions of entry as these will give any restrictions/guidance as to what times will be accepted. It is normally a requirement for entry into County, Regional/District and National Competitions that entry times must have been achieved at a Licensed Open Meet (Level 1, 2, 3 or 4). Inter-Club and League galas are not licensed events nor are Biathlon Events. For some Open Meets times achieved at a gala or even training sessions may be used. A coach may also advise an entry time.


I have just joined the club, how many sessions should I attend?
You should try to attend as many of your sessions as possible for the training group that you have been allocated a space in.

I have just joined Skill Development what training equipment do I need?
You will need: goggles, trunks/costume, towel, drinks bottle, kick board and pull buoy. You will also need a set of fins. All items can be brought through the club shop or on the internet.

At what age should a swimmer start early morning training?
There is no real answer apart from as soon as possible/as soon as they can cope with the early mornings, a day at school and evening training. Swimmers should have their own alarm clock and get themselves up!.

Why is morning training so important?
Swimming is a training intensive sport, without attendance at morning training swimmers that wish to compete at a high level would not achieve sufficient hours. It is also important to prepare for competing at Open Meets and Championships, many of which start early in the day.

I am competing in a gala or open meet should I miss training?
Swimmers should only miss training due to illness or injury and on the advice of the Coach. Missing training prior to an event could have an adverse effect on the results achieved.


How do I keep the Coach(es) happy?
Easy! Follow these tips: Listen to the Coach, attend training as often as possible, be willing to compete for the Club, and always try your best.

What should I do if I feel unwell at training or a competition?
You must let the Coach or Team Manager know as soon as possible.

How do I find out my personal best times?
Swimmers should keep a record of all times they achieve in training and competition. They should also try to remember these. The club also maintains a database of personal best times.

What is the club’ policy on Data Protection?
Please refer to the Club’s Data Protection Policy

What is the club’s policy on taking photographs?
Please refer to the Club’s Photograph Policy and Consent Form

What is ASA registration?
Please refer to the Club’s ASA Registration page

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