Give your child a taste of the competitive swimming world by joining our recreational league of swim teams, The Horsetooth League. Any level of swim skill is accepted, ranging from beginner to state record holders. Participants range from age 5 to age 18 and live in the Fort Collins, Loveland or Windsor areas. Various neighborhood swim teams make up the league. The league is primarily parent-managed and organized.
Please keep in mind that, even at this recreational level, swim team does NOT replace swimming lessons. Swimmers will receive the best coaching possible, but because of the size and instructional nature of swim team, they will not receive the constant attention given in a small group or one on one swimming class. Coaches are available for private lessons for an additional fee.
Goals for Swim Team Participation
- To instill safe water habits when in or around the water
- To instill the love of a lifelong sport
- To promote a healthy and active lifestyle
- To build confidence and learn to be a part of a team
- To coordinate proper swimming mechanics and improved stroke techniques
Qualifications to join the team:
We must do everything in our power to ensure safety; therefore, swimmers must meet minimum qualifications. Swimmers who cannot perform these skills after the first two days of practice are welcome to develop their skills by taking swimming lessons (either group or private). After possessing the required skills, they may join the team half way through the season. The team coach has the right to deny participation to any swimmer they feel may not be safe in the water and/or ready to participate.
Participants must be able to perform the following skills to be eligible:
- Freestyle with rhythmic breathing 25 yards (one length of the pool)
- Backstroke 25 yards
Season Duration and Time Commitment
The season kicks off in early June (depending on the school district schedule and coach/parent scheduling) and runs through the end of July. The City Championship meet is typically held on the third weekend in July while the State Championship meet is typically on the last weekend in July or the first weekend in August.
All other swim meets are scheduled throughout June and July. Most teams participate in about six meets, plus the city and state championship meets. Meets are held on Wednesday or Saturday mornings and typically last three to four hours. Meets are not scored or officiated, with the exception of the two championship meets.
Participation in meets is optional, although as a team sport, lack of committed swimmers hinders the team’s ability to participate in relay events at swim meets.
Most teams practice Monday through Friday between 7am and 9am (this is location specific). Swimmers will be divided into separate groups that will practice within (not throughout) the two-hour window.
The first two days of practice are “placement” and/or “try it” days. Swimmers’ skills will be evaluated by the coaching staff to determine the appropriate practice group and lane at that time. Further information on practice groups and times will be provided at your pool’s parent meeting.
As a league run primarily by parents, families of swimmers are required to volunteer in some way to help the team – this is not optional. The league cannot and will not run without this support. There are a variety of ways you can help out, and you will have the opportunity to sign-up at the parent meeting.