Marlins – Club nights

We hold club nights every Tuesday from 5:30pm to 8pm over swimming season (terms 4 and 1).

These nights are an opportunity for the kids to develop some swimming and racing confidence and have a bit of fun with their club mates. They compete against each other, but the primary focus is personal improvement – i.e. for the swimmers to try and beat their own racing time.

Club nights are great for helping our kids to develop good sportsmanship – parents and our older club members model this behaviour for our younger swimmers.

We follow official processes, (using a starting gun and timers) so the kids get used to the formalities of swimming events. Times are recorded and results are issued each week.

Swimmers earn points for the events they participate. Trophies are awarded during end of season celebrations for those with the most points. More details about the points system can be found in the club handbook.

We don’t take any of this too seriously though – club nights are all about fun. The kids (and parents) enjoy tracking their progress over time, celebrating each milestone and personal best (PB).

Frequently asked questions

What happens on a typical club night?
Club nights start with a free swim, followed by a half-pool swim for those still building their water confidence. Members then participate in events of their choice (25m or 50m events in freestyle, breaststroke, backstroke and butterfly).

We also run special events each week in a particular stroke (50m and 100m), or a medley event that any swimmer can nominate for. Special events give swimmers the chance to earn extra points towards end of year awards and to qualify for the distance championships (these are held towards the end of season instead of the special events – refer to the club handbook for more information).

My child is still developing water confidence and can’t swim 25 meters yet. Can they still participate?
Absolutely! Our older swimmers are always happy to be in the pool to help out any of the swimmers who need extra support to get through an event. Please let one of our marshals know on the night if this support is required. If you prefer, you are welcome to be in the pool with your child during any event if they need it.

Do the swimmers need to start from the starting blocks?
Swimmers can start on the blocks or they can be already in the pool.

Do we need to stay for the whole night?
No, you can leave at any time. If you leave before an event your child is nominated for, you just need to let one of the club officials know so we can adjust the program.

Do we need to come every week?
No, there’s no requirement to attend every week. Swimmers nominate each week for the races they want to participate in.

Do I need to be there? Can I drop and go?
Your child needs to have a responsible adult with them on club nights. They are your responsibility at all times. You can arrange for another parent to look after them if you can’t be there. Grandparents are also welcome to come along.

How are the nominations managed?
Nominations are called for weekly through our closed Facebook group. You’ll be asked to complete an online nomination form and a program will be issued ahead of time.

Which events should I nominate my child for?
It’s up to you which stroke you nominate your child for. You can decide this on a weekly basis.

The events are arranged by recorded swimming time rather than age so the children are always swimming with others who are at a similar level.

All swimmers start in the 25m events for each stroke, progressing to the 50m once they achieve a particular time in that stroke. Details of the required progression times can be found in the club handbook.

We also run weekly specials (50m, 100m and 200m medley special events) each week as a stretch opportunity for any kid who wants to give it a go. Swimmers interested in participating in the end of season distance championships must have an official time recorded in the relevant special. Refer to the club handbook for further information.

Do we need to nominate for the half swim?
The half swim is not a timed event so nominations are not required.

What if we’ve nominated but can’t attend?
Simply send us a message through the Facebook page, by email or by text and we will scratch your child from their nominated races.

What happens if I forget to nominate?
Where requested, we’ll try our best to fit your child into a race but they won’t get a recorded time for their swim.

How are the events managed?
We have a loudspeaker and a marshalling area – children are called to the marshalling area ahead of their event. They need to listen for their events to be called over (e.g. 25 meter freestyle). Once called they need to go and make themselves known to the marshalls. The marshals will provide instructions from that point.

Please note – we don’t call individual children over by name. It’s each swimmer’s responsibility to make sure they are in the right place at the right time.

Are ribbons awarded at club nights?
No. Club nights are more about personal improvement than competition.

Swimmers are however awarded progression certificates on assembly (or poolside for non-MRSS students) when they graduate from 25m to 50m events in each stroke.

What should we bring on club night?
Swim cap
Something to keep your child warm between races
Water bottle
Money for canteen
A positive attitude

Are there change rooms, toilets and hot showers?
We have change rooms and toilets. Showers are available but there is no hot water and they are outside the toilet block (only suitable for a cool rinse-off while still wearing swimmers).

Are food and drinks available from the canteen on club nights?
The swimming club has a volunteer canteen coordinator who maintains canteen stock levels and arranges rosters.

The canteen is open on club nights. It is run by volunteers and sells drinks, ice-blocks and snacks.

We try to ensure meals are available for purchase for every club night but this service is heavily dependent on volunteers. The availability of meals will be communicated through the club’s Facebook group.

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