Pre-Team & Nestlings
Pre-team eligible children should be able to comfortably make their way across the pool (floating, swimming, or kicking with a board) unassisted and without showing signs of distress (such as crying or refusing to get in the water). Children interested in joining the pre-team should have basic swim skills: blowing bubbles, kicking on the wall and kicking with a kick board with face in water. They should be comfortable and confident in water over 5 feet in depth. If your child can pass the "tadpole test," which is one length of the pool without touching bottom, floating for one minute, and treading water for one minute, the pre-team is likely a good fit. Pre-team kids should begin to demonstrate the beginnings of a correct freestyle, minus the polish.
Nestlings, or baby penguins, are kids who don't quite fit the above skill set and need more in-water assistance from coaches. They should be close to passing the tadpole test but haven't mastered all three requirements for it. While ability is more important than age, Nestlings are typically not ready for the group until age 5. Most practices will take place in the shallow training pool. As swimmers' ability and confidence increases, they may move up to pre-team and 8&under lanes. If your child requires parent/adult participation/presence in-water, we recommend starting with lessons. If after a few weeks of lessons you and the coach providing lessons believe your child is Nestling-ready, you may sign up for the group.
Pre-team and Nestling swimmers will swim at the same time as the 8&Under team swimmers so that moving up in ability will not require attending different practice times.
We encourage all young swimmers, regardless of ability level, to supplement the swim program with private lessons. Please reach out to coaches directly for lessons; their contact info can be found under the "coaches" tab. There are also a number of good swimmers who can provide lessons. Their contact information is available in the pool office.
Contact Katherine Lew with questions!