View Full Version : What time of year do folks join teams? And any come/go?

March 19th, 2018, 04:38 PM
Kids' schedule will not permit me to join a team, but I am thinking about checking out the local team during their noon practice, and maybe doing it for a month here or there (they may not let me ). The question I have is, is there a "beginning" of the season where they have new members, or when they have breaks, or otherwise is there a more ideal time to join? There is not a whole lot of info on the local team's page.

I am also wondering how open teams are to folks dropping in for a month at a time. So maybe I'll swim for a month out of every 3 or so. I'd like some coaching, and some help in pushing my limits (hard to do on one's own). But I can't do it throughout the year, as the morning and evening practices offered conflict with my kids' practice.

I know right now, USA Swimming is in between the end of short course, and the beginning of long course. Don't know if USMS has a similar break.

March 19th, 2018, 06:51 PM
Upstate NY here. We have masters practice at the local YMCA. 2 days a week, Tue. & Thu., 3 sessions, 5:30 AM, noon, and 6:30 PM. I'm retired, so I go at noon. There are usually about 6 people then. I don't know how many in the other time slots, but I'm sure the evening group is larger. Some will come for a few sessions, then disappear for a few more, then reappear. Newbies come in from time to time, often requiring remedial stroke work. There is no starting season or end, it goes year round, and people will pop in and out from month to month, but that core noon group of 6 is pretty constant.

There are a couple indoor meets this time of year, then outdoor OWS in late summer. I don't get into competition much, so there may be more I'm just not aware of, especially if you want to travel a couple hours over to MA or CT.

March 19th, 2018, 09:58 PM
I second checking out a local YMCA. Ours will allow you to go month to month. People start up at any time, but the beginning of the year is when the tri peeps start coming out to prep for their seasons. Give it a shot!

March 19th, 2018, 10:27 PM
I second checking out a local YMCA. Ours will allow you to go month to month. People start up at any time, but the beginning of the year is when the tri peeps start coming out to prep for their seasons. Give it a shot!

It is one and teh same. The local university basically took over the biggest (age group) team here, and recently took over the YMCA's programs, now, too. Most of the age groupers have been moved to the Y, but hte masters program still only practices at the university. Before all of that happened, the only times the Y offered were in the evenings when my kids had stuff going on. Basically, I'm tied up every morning from 4:30 until 8:30, and then in the afternoon/evenings from 2:30 until about 8:00 on MWF, 6:30 on Tu, and 5:30 on Th. Not a lot of options, so I could potentially swim occasionally at the lunch practice when months are not too, too busy.

I'm really just hoping to not be disruptive if/when I decide to go for a bit, and then if I were to go off and on. I'll still swim most mornings when my kids are at practice, so it isn't like I"ll take breaks from it.

March 20th, 2018, 10:51 AM
All of teams in Pittsburgh offer drop in rates. So basically you can come and go as you please, just pay the $5-$10 (depending on team).

March 20th, 2018, 12:36 PM
My local YMCA Master's group follows the YMCA program season where you register and pay for 2 months at a time. Most people start an leave based on that schedule, but no particular time of year. They do allow a person who just wants to try it out to come for a couple of weeks before signing up. The only real pattern that I see is that the coaches change with the season and some participants come and go depending their coach preference.

Mark Usher
March 20th, 2018, 02:20 PM
Here in Sarasota, our Tsunami Masters team has quite a few "Snowbird" members who spend the winter months down here. Some of them still maintain membership in their clubs up north, even though they train with us during the winter. We also see a number of vacationers looking for a place to swim for a few days.

We're pretty receptive to visitors and enjoy meeting and getting to know new folks.

Our club is $50/month and has a $7 drop-in fee. Obviously, if someone is going to be here more than seven days in a given month, it's less expensive to just pay the monthly fee.

We normally have three distinct pace groups: A "fitness" group, a middle group that ranges between a 1:40 - 2:00 interval, and a fast group that swims around 1:30 or faster, so we usually have a spot for visitors to hop in and feel comfortable. Our coach is good at knowing how everyone swims and fitting folks in or modifying the workout where appropriate.

We share the pool with our youth team, so during long course season (roughly May through August), we swim long course on Tue, Thu, & Sat and short course on the other days. We also have a separate 4-lane 25 yd teaching pool that some folks prefer as an option to swimming long course.

March 20th, 2018, 04:00 PM
My club has the seasonal "regulars". The triathletes tend to swim with us during the winter, and disappear during spring/summer. Long distance swimmers tend to start showing up in spring. Some other folks go to their local outdoor pools when it opens after memorial day till they close it up. The club has quarterly dues, so it kinda works out for them. And of course you have those that aren't too concerned about the dues, so they pay for the whole year but I only see them once a month. We are in the suburbs, so we don't get much visitors, but when we do, we don't charge them.