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Cuda Handbook




Swim team membership is open to Oak Creek Village residents who are in good standing with the Oak Creek Village Community Association.  In addition, residents of Olde Oaks/Waterford Park, Northgate Forest, as well as other families who do not live in subdivisions with an NWAL team are eligible to participate.

Eligibility for an age group is determined by an individual's age as of May 31st. The following age categories are defined by NWAL:

6 and under
7 to 8 Years Old
9 to10 Years Old
11 to 12 Years Old
13 to 14 Years Old
15 to 18 Years Old

Only NOVICE swimmers may participate in the league. A NOVICE is any individual up to and including 18 years of age who has not participated in USA Swimming competition from the beginning of the NWAL Summer Season (May 1th) until the end of the NWAL Season (June 23rd). This rule is not intended to preclude any type of organized practice.



Swimmers are expected to regularly attend their age-group practices. Making practice a priority will greatly improve their swimming performance. 

If a swimmer will not be able to attend a swim meet, please enter that information on the website so that our coaches can choose events and relays accordingly.





Oak Creek Village Swim Team is grouped together with five other teams, to make up a six- team division. During the course of the swim season, OCV will swim against each of the other teams one time. A two-team meet is called a Dual Meet.



This is the end of the season championship meet, when all six teams swim together at one large meet to determine the Division Champion. TO QUALIFY TO SWIM AT THE DIVISIONAL MEET A SWIMMER MUST PARTICIPATE IN AT LEAST TWO OF THE REGULAR SEASON DUAL MEETS.



These meets are held the weekend after Divisionals. There are two: All-Stars and the Ponderosa Invitational. Both are two-day meets and have qualifying times that must be met to al- low a swimmer to swim at either meet. These times are available from the coaches and will also be posted at the pool.



The organization and execution of the swim team program is a tremendous effort. Countless hours during the offseason, during the meets, and between meets are required to make the program a success. IT IS ESSENTIAL THAT ALL PARENTS CONTRIBUTE THEIR TIME AND HELP IN SOME WAY. The following is a list of opportunities available:

  • Announcers
  • Cuda Café
  • Social Activities
  • Swim Meet Officials*
  • Swim Meet Set-Up/Tear Down Ribbons
  • Ready Bench Scoring/Computer Scribes
  • Timers
  • Clerk of Course Asst.
  • Coaching Assistants

* Meet Officials include Referees, Starters, Stroke and Turn, and Clerk of Course - these officials must be certified by NWAL in order to function in their capacity.

PARENTS: Please volunteer when you register your child and please say YES! if asked to do a job or train to be an official.






Most Dual Meets start at 8:30 am. Swimmers are expected to "circle-in" for the meets at a specified time, typically 6:45.  Line-ups will be posted at the pool, and it is important that ALL swimmers check-in with their team parent as well as circle-in upon arriving.



  • Water wear: swim suit, cap, goggles
  • Towels
  • Shorts/T-shirt: helps protect from sun
  • Something to sit on: lawn chair, blanket, pillows
  • Sunscreen
  • Things to pass the time: books, travel games, electronic games, radio w/headphones
  • Food: bring your own water bottle and healthy snacks in personal cooler

SUGGESTIONS: bottled water, fruit juice, sports drinks, granola and/or power bars, fruit, cereal, bagels, turkey sandwiches.



Swimmers may participate in a maximum of 3 individual events and 2 relays, or a maximum of 5 total events including relays. A meet consists of 78 events alternating between girls and boys events.

The order of events is as follows:

  • 100 Yard Freestyle Events (14U & 15—18 year old age groups)
  • Freestyle Relays (6 and under age groups)
  • Medley Relays (Backstroke, Breaststroke, Butterfly and Freestyle, in that order)
  • Freestyle
  • Breaststroke
  • Backstroke (6 and under age group)
  • Individual Medley (IM) (Butterfly, Backstroke, Breaststroke and Freestyle in that order)
  • Backstroke (All ages, except 6 and under age group)
  • Butterfly
  • Freestyle Relays (All ages, except 6 and under age group)

The events by age group are as follows:

  • 6 and under swimmers only swim Freestyle and Backstroke (25 yards) and Freestyle Relay (100 yards).
  • 7 to 8 year old swimmers swim Freestyle, Backstroke, Breaststroke, Butterfly (25 yards ) and Freestyle and Medley Relays (100 yards).
  • 9 to 10 year old swimmers swim Freestyle, Backstroke, Breaststroke, Butterfly (25 yards ) and the Individual Medley (IM) (100 yards) and Freestyle and Medley Relays (100 yards).
  • 11 to 12, 13 to 14 and 15 to 18 year old swimmers swim Freestyle, Backstroke, Breaststroke, Butterfly (50 yards ) and the Individual Medley (IM) (100 yards) and Freestyle and Medley Relays (200 yards).



Any one event will normally contain several "HEATS". In any event with several heats, the fastest swimmers are always placed in the last heat. Swimmers are assigned lanes based on their times, with fastest times getting the center lanes. Three times are recorded in each lane. If two watches concur, that time is the official time. If all three watches differ, then the intermediate time is the official time. Final finish placements in any event are accomplished by comparing the times of swimmers in all heats of that event.



In a dual meet, points for individual events are awarded on a 5-3-1 basis (1st, 2nd, 3rd place, respectively). A team may only score relay points for one place. If one team wins both 1st and 2nd place then only 1st place (5 points) shall be awarded. At a Divisional Meet, the scoring is awarded 7-5-4-3-2-1 for individual and relay events. The meet winner is the team with the most points. Total number of first places decides winner if more than one team are equal in total points.



The trained officials needed at any meet are: Referees, Starters, Stroke and Turn, and Clerk of Course. The Meet Referee has total responsibility for the running of the meet and will decide all questions concerning the meet and the rules. The Referee can overrule any other meet official on a point of rule interpretation or on a judgment decision pertaining to an action, which he/she personally observed. Only a team's official representative may discuss points of clarification with the Meet Referee.

Swimmers are required to execute the strokes correctly. Failure to do so will result in disqualification ("DQ"). A Stroke and Turn Official will explain to each disqualified swimmer the reason for the "DQ". Only those people and officials directly involved in the running of the meet are permitted on the swimming pool deck.



CLERK OF COURSE: No one has yet figured out all (or what) this person does. It has something to do with seed- ing, lineups, heats, etc.
DISQUALIFICATION: If you are DQ'd, as they say, you are only eliminated from that event's scoring. DQ means you did something wrong.
DIVISIONALS: The third longest day of the year. To provide a year-end competition between all teams in a NWAL division. Lots of trophies and ribbons are awarded.
FALSE START: Swimmers must come to a complete stop when the starter gives the command "take your mark". Any forward motion before the "gun" is a false start. Two false starts disqualify a swimmer from that event and he/she must step down from the block.
HEAT: It is one of many races required to complete a given event.
LINE-UP: A document prepared by the Coach showing who swims what event. A copy is posted in the team area.
PONDEROSA INVITATIONAL: The two longest days in the year! The best swimmers from everywhere con-verge for an extended competition.






Meet Place Ribbons dual meet are awarded after dual meets to the first six places in each individual event, and relay ribbons for first place only. Ribbons and/or medals will be awarded up to 16th place at the Divisional Meet. Each hosting swim team awards heat ribbons. At Oak Creek, participation ribbonsare awarded for all heats for swimmers age 8 and under. Not all teams have this policy.



The Swim Team Board has adopted a program of awarding ribbons to those swimmers who show marked time improvement in their swimming performances during the season. This is our JAWS CLUB award. Special Jaws Club ribbons are awarded to swimmers that improve their BEST TIME by three or more seconds in any of their events.



The Swim Team Board sponsors an Awards Banquet at the end of the season, usually held the Monday after the Divisional Meet. All participating swim team members will receive a special trophy. Other special recognition awards are presented along with great food and it's always lots of fun!




The CUDA Newsletter is e-mailed to each family every week during the swim season. E-mail is our primary means of communicating with parents, so make sure that we have correct e-mail addresses. You can also find the newsletter on the Cuda website,

There will also be a Family Folder box at practice each day. Each family has a folder with their family name on it. We will use these folders to give you forms that you will need and also to hand out Place Ribbons and/or Jaws Club Ribbons that your child may have earned at the meet that previous Saturday. BE SURE TO CHECK YOUR FOLDER ON A REGULAR BASIS TO STAY INFORMED OF UPCOMING EVENTS.



TEAM PARENT has an important role of keeping the communication open between the swimmers, coaches and the clerk of course during the meets.

Team Parents are assigned to an age group of either boys or girls, and given a roster with phone numbers of swimmers. Each swimmer is informed of their team parent and phone number. This is the swimmer's contact person for questions about practices, meets and special events.

It is VERY IMPORTANT for every swimmer to check in with their TEAM PARENT the morning of each meet. The team parent will have the heat sheet with the events each swimmer is swimming that day. It is advisable that age groupings sit together. This is helpful in getting the swimmers to the ready bench on time, especially the relay teams.



Nothing messes up a summer more than an illness. Talk to almost any swimmer and they can tell you a story of their fight with swimmer's ear. "Swimmer's Ear" is one of the names for infection of the outer ear canal. Sometimes a fungus really causes it, but more often, especially in painful cases, it is caused by one of a common bacteria. When water gets into your ear, it may bring with it bacteria or fungus particles.

The entire sequence of events can be prevented if you use antiseptic ear drops whenever you feel that water is trapped in your ears. It is suggested that during the hot summer months, you should use ear drops before and after swimming. Such ear drops are: Aqua Ear, Ear Magic, Swim Ear, etc., which can be found in your local drug store. Or you can use your own home remedy; equal parts white vinegar and alcohol. The white vinegar contains acetic acid, which kills the bacteria and fungus, and the alcohol absorbs the water and helps dry out the ear.

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