Summer 2023 Team Handbook
Welcome to the Brookfield Breakers Swim Season!
We are glad to see those of you who swam with us last season and we’re thrilled to welcome new Breaker swimmers and parents.
For those of you returning, welcome back. For those who are new to the Breakers, we’d like to welcome you to our team!
Our goals this year are simple:
- To become the best swimmers that we can be
- To demonstrate good sportsmanship and team spirit
- To have a fun summer!!
We are thrilled to have a great coaching staff with us this summer:
Our team reps are Jennifer Pinilla, Chris Peters, Andrea Kelley, and Imelda Kodrata. Between the four of us we have ten Breaker swimmers. Please feel free to contact us with any of your questions or concerns at any time. Our contact information is as follows:
Jennifer Pinilla (571) 352-0588
Chris Peters (703) 586-0714
Andrea Kelley (571) 265-3628
Imelda Kodrata (571) 296-4491
Remember no question or issue is too small or unimportant!
We believe in establishing a healthy environment that encourages swimmers to do their best, recognizes their contributions, and is fun for the entire family. Our goal is that kids will enjoy the time spent developing their swimming skills and belonging to the team. Most of the kids don't care if we're in a top division or a bottom division. We'd all like to be division champions, which usually means going undefeated, but only one team out of six can usually claim this honor. Personal development is what is most important and for a swimmer that means improving your times.
We've all taken our kids to soccer or other sports and probably stood by as two or three parents ran the team. Swimming isn't like that. You can't run a swim program without parental help. In fact, it takes over 40 parents to time, officiate and score a typical swim meet, and that doesn't include pool set up and tear down or running the snack bar or non- swimming team activities. Coaches are the only paid staff for swim team -- everyone else is a volunteer. We value each other's contributions!
Swimming is unique in that there's a place on the team for anyone eighteen or younger who can swim across the pool without assistance. How many other sports have kids five years old to eighteen years old and their parents on the same team participating in the same competition?
Expectations for Swimmers
Although swimming is considered an individual sport, our summer league is structured with an emphasis on the team. Any team is only as good as the people on it. In keeping with our philosophy articulated above, our expectations are simple:
- The Brookfield Swim Team encourages swimmers who can swim the length of the pool to swim in the Monday night, developmental meets. If a swimmer is unable to swim the length of the pool, this would be a good goal for them to have at the beginning of the season.
- Keep your commitments: We're planning on you to swim at all the meets unless you tell us you're not available, preferably at least three days in advance.
- Pay attention to the coaches: Disruptions aren't fair to the other swimmers.
- Do your best- it's a lot more important than being the best.
- Have fun.
Expectations for Parents
- Pay attention to information from the team reps (usually via e-mail). There will be messages before meets with information about location and report time, swimmer selections (what stroke your swimmer will be doing), and volunteer assignments. Sign up with multiple e-mail addresses if you'd like! Let the team rep know in advance when you are unavailable.
- Keep your volunteer commitment (we need parents to run the meets).
- When volunteering on the deck (as a timer, for example) wear a plain white top (no writing or logos) and dark bottoms.
- Ask questions, of the team rep and other parents who are veteran swim team families. There is a lot to learn, we're all volunteers, and we want to make this as easy as possible!
The Breaker swim program cannot be run successfully without the effective communication among all of the participants. In an attempt to implement effective communications, the methods identified below have been put into place and everyone is asked to follow these methods.
While written communications is one key to communicating effectively, making sure that the intended recipient received the note is even more important. A “mailbox” has been assigned on a one per family basis for the distribution of written communication. The mailbox bin will be at practice daily.
We will be sending out Breaker Blast emails as updates of team events. Please inform the Team Rep if there is a change in your email address.
https://brookfieldbreakers.swimtopia.com will be utilized by the swim team, as well as the Northern Virginia Swim Leagues site at www.mynvsl.com and Facebook page www.facebook.com/BrookfieldBreakers. We will keep them current with up to date notices of activities and meets. We will have addresses/directions to the meets on the website, as well as plenty of photos of Breakers in action, in and out of the pool. You will be able to access meet results, both individual and relay, as well as track a swimmer’s progress over the course of the season. Check them out!
SWIM SUITS AND SPIRIT WEAR
Our team suit supplier is Metro Swimshop (https://web.metroswimshop.com/index.jsp?teamid=89543)in Fairfax. They are located at 11215-K Lee Highway Unit 40, Fairfax, VA 22030. Our team suit is the Finis Blackblade, Jammer and Brief and Jolyn Chevy. These are a two year suit.
Team Spirit Wear can be purchased from SuitUp's team page. Please note the order deadlines for the different items. Order early so they can be enjoyed for the summer season!!
MEET AND PRACTICE ATTENDANCE
Our summer swim season is ten weeks long from the first practice through Divisionals. Attendance by every swimmer at every possible practice is essential. We realize that there are numerous end of school activities, CYA spring sports are still ongoing, and summer camps happen, but it is still important that you attend every possible practice session.
For each Saturday meet, we have to finalize the list of who is swimming in each meet by Wednesday night so we can pass it to the other team on Thursday evening. After this occurs, we can only replace missing swimmers with a swimmer who has a slower recorded time in the event of the seeded swimmer. We cannot swap swimmers among events to optimize our swim selections.
If you plan to not be available for any Saturday meet, please communicate this to the Team Reps or Coaches in writing no later than the Wednesday before that meet. Also, let us know in writing if you will not be able to attend the Division Relay Carnival (July 14th) by the Saturday prior to this event.
Monday night meet signups will be done exclusively online again this year. Please do not delay in signing up as no sign ups will be accepted on Monday!
MONDAY NIGHT MEETS
(a) Swimmers who placed first in any event in NVSL competition during the current season, may not officially compete in developmental meets.
(b) Swimmers who placed second or third in an event in NVSL competition during the current season, may not officially compete in that event in developmental meets. These swimmers may officially compete in all other events in developmental meets.
(d) All swimmers, regardless of results in NVSL competition during the current season, may compete in the Individual Medley event.
(a) Each eligible swimmer may swim not more than two (2) individual events and the individual medley.
(b) UNOFFICIAL SWIMMERS will be mixed in heats with official swimmers. UNOFFICIAL SWIMMERS will be marked as exhibition swimmers on their time cards and will not be considered for places or awarded ribbons in that event.
Ribbons are awarded for 1st through 6th place in all meets. In Monday night meets, ribbons are also awarded for being a competitor and personal best ribbons are distributed for all races where it is achieved.
The Brookfield Breakers swim team is a community of families and being the member of any team requires help from parents. But being the member of a swim team requires heroic amounts of time and energy and we cannot do it alone. We need every family to be represented at all swim meets, both Saturdays and Mondays. This year, we are going to try to make sure that the many outweigh the few in volunteering. There is a job for everyone, whether it is behind the scenes at home or timing a few hours on a Monday night. The Brookfield Breakers swim team will be eternally grateful for your help, and your children will be proud of your dedication to them and the team. In that spirit, we ask that each family volunteer a MINIMUM of 5 times during the season, with the reality being that it will be probably more than that. If you are having trouble finding something that is right for you or fits your schedule, please contact the Team Reps and we will be more than happy to make suggestions.
Hints to Help Your Swimmer be More Successful
- Be supportive – Quality time is important
- Be aware of perceived pressure
- Avoid criticism of the Coach in front of your swimmer
- Don’t try to coach your swimmer – he/she already has one! You have the most important role of all – cheering and supporting your swimmer
- Remember that swimming should be fun
- Whose goals are they anyway? – Swimmers should swim to their own objectives
- Be enthusiastic