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Team Handbook

Pirates Swim Team Handbook

Welcome to the Pirates

About Us

The Pirates Swim Team (“Pirates”) recreational summer swim team based in Peachtree City, GA and has served the greater Fayette County for more than 30 years.

We are part of the Peachtree City Summer Swim League (PTCSSL) which is a league of 10 independent swim teams with swimmers ranging from 5 – 18 years old.

For more information on the PTCSSL please refer to http://ptcssl.swimtopia.com/

Mission and Objectives

Pirates purpose is to offer the young people of our community a recreational summer swim league with unique experiences that promotes the following goals:

● A positive, healthy, safe and enjoyable competitive environment for youth swimmers within the community

● An opportunity to develop competitive swimming skills as well as improve physical fitness 

● A commitment to personal improvement, work ethic, self-discipline, self-confidence, and excellence

● A team environment of inclusion, camaraderie, sportsmanship, friendship, and fun

Welcome to the Pirates

Youth Swimming is Different

The sport of youth swimming is unique because it relies more heavily upon the time and effort of its volunteers than do other youth sports. This is primarily because of swim meets, which require many volunteer positions to support the hundreds of swimmers who attend those meets. We need your commitment because where other youth sporting events may still occur without its volunteers, youth swimming would not even function at all.

The types of volunteer positions required for swim meets are fully detailed further in this handbook. Please remember that without the support of parents, friends and family, Pirates swimming would not be possible. As a registered member of Pirates, we need your agreement to the following policies and requirements.

1. Volunteering

The Pirates website allows members to request volunteer positions and we encourage you to sign up as early as possible to ensure you get the shift and position of your preference.

2. Attendance

Your child must attend all practices and meets that they are able. Dedication is the secret to a great team. If your child will miss more than two consecutive days at any one time, please let the coaches know. If your child will not be attending a meet, please let the coaches know as soon as possible. This information can be sent via email. If your child is absent for more than two weeks without contacting a coach, we will assume that he/she no longer wants to swim, and they will be dropped from the roster.

3. Refund Policy

The following Pirate refund policy applies. Refunds for registration fees will be paid out as follows:

● 100% registration fee refund, less $20.00 administrative fee, if requested in writing no later than 7 calendar days prior to opening day of practice.

● 50% registration fee refund, less $20.00 administrative fee, if requested in writing within 6 days of opening day or anytime during the first week of practice.

● 0% refund if requested on or after the Monday of the second week of practice.

*Refund is subject to the following conditions:

● Does not include the purchase of swimsuits, additional equipment, or any other incidental costs associated with participation. Refund and or resale options for additional equipment is not the responsibility of Pirates.

Eligibility Requirements of a Swimmer

Please understand that swim practice is intended for improving skills, conditioning and training. While some skills will be taught, practice is not intended to be a private or group swim lesson. Therefore, after registration, a swimmer must be able to demonstrate the ability to complete a minimum standard of swim competence, subject to the discretion of the coaching staff.

This demonstration occurs prior to registration during the pre-season swim tests conducted by the coaching staff. The requirement is the ability to swim at least one length of the pool unaided on back or stomach. Any swimmer who registers and has not passed a pre-season swim test will be asked to leave the team and take stroke clinics/swim lessons at their own expense. We require this to ensure the safety of all swimmers.


Insurance for the swimmers is required and will be paid at the time of registration and is separate from the registration fee. During the registration process you will be asked to acknowledge the insurance fee and then during the payment process it will be shown on the itemized page. Registration cannot be completed without the insurance fee acknowledgement and payment. Swimmers are covered at any organized practice of Pirates, every scheduled meet and all Pirates team activities.


If we have information specific to your family, a note will be emailed. All information regarding upcoming events will be available on the team website. This information will include newsletters and reminders of upcoming events. It is the swimmer’s responsibility to check the website. After meets, ribbons will be distributed to the athletes during practice. Ribbons are only available at practice the week after a meet.


Practice is the most important thing swimmers can do to improve their times and technique. Athletes are encouraged to attend all practices. Please be consistent in your attendance and let your child’s coach know if you will be missing practice for an extended period of time. Parents are welcome to stay* and watch their children’s swim practice, however, they are not allowed on the deck at any time during practice. It is easier for children to concentrate when they aren’t distracted by parents or siblings.

Pirates coaches are paid contractors of the organization. As their time is valuable, please do not disturb them while on duty with your athletes. If you wish to speak with a coach, please contact Coach Becky @ [email protected] to schedule a convenient time.

*Swimmers ages 12 and under must have a parent or guardian onsite during their entire practice. In the event a parent or guardian is unable to stay you must designate another parent or sibling over the age of 17 to stand in for you. This is a requirement of the team insurance policy, failure to comply will result in expulsion from the team.


Prior to a swim meet, the swimmers will sign up for which events they would like to participate in the following Thursday. Swimmers can compete in a maximum of two (2) individual events and two (2) relays each week. The coaches will determine all relay positions.

Meet information will be on the website each week. It is very important that your swimmer(s) arrive at the meet on time so that they may check in and be ready to swim before warm-up begins. Swimmers must check in with their age group coach when they arrive at the meet. If your swimmer is late to the meet, they may be scratched from relays and possibly individual events. Scratches from events are final, no discussion. Your teammates may also lose the opportunity to swim if you are late, so please plan on arriving on time.

Please notify the coaches as soon as possible on the week of that meet if you will be unable to attend a meet. It causes a lot of stress and last-minute adjustments if someone doesn't show up without notice. If a last-minute emergency should arise, please text Coach Becky @ 678-521-9450.

The first thing each swimmer needs to do when they arrive at a swim meet is check in with their age group coach. Even if they are late, have them check in with their coach before they join the team in warm-up so that they are not scratched from relays and/or individual events.

**PLEASE READ**AII swimmers must stay in team area with during meets. This ensures that they will be ready on time to swim their events. It is NOT the coach’s responsibility to search for each swimmer for each event. It IS the swimmer’s responsibility to stay with their age group and notify the coach if they are leaving to go to the concession stand, bathroom, etc. Swimmers must inform their coaches before leaving the meet.

Be prepared to do your best at a meet by bringing the following: team suit, team cap, towels, team shirt, goggles, a lawn/sports chair, blanket, or tarp to sit on, and sun block. Label all your items with your name and team name! Check the FAQ link online for more info.


Team Swimsuit: While not required, it is recommended that each swimmer purchase a team suit to wear at swim meets. If they choose not to purchase the team suit, the girls must wear a one-piece, and the boys must wear a Jammer or speedo style racing suits. Boys suits should not be baggy shorts or cut-offs. This rule applies to meets as well as to practice. If you have a question on what appropriate attire for practice or meets, please ask a coach.

Team T-Shirts: A Pirates Team T-Shirt is included in the registration fee. Please have swimmers wear them to all meets and team functions. It is an important aspect in the development of team spirit. You can purchase extra t-shirts at registration, at the merchandise table during meets, or online while supplies last. Please make sure to label your child’s team items as they all look the same!

Swim Caps: A Pirates swim cap was also included in the registration fee. A cap of team color should be worn at meets by swimmers. Proper technique cannot be achieved when hair is in the way. Extra swim caps will be available for purchase at home meets and online.

Goggles: Although not required, goggles are strongly recommended. They improve the swimmer's vision in the water, as well as eliminate irritation caused by pool chemicals. Check the fit of the goggles before you purchase them. Goggles that don’t fit properly leak, and leaky goggles are worse than no goggles because they distract the swimmers. The team does have a limited supply of goggles for purchase.

Fins: Swimming fins are an essential part of swim training and are strongly recommended as a part of a swimmer’s equipment list. Fins improve body position and stroke technique as well as increase foot / ankle flexibility and range of motion which all contribute toward improved swimming.

Kickboard: Kickboards are also an essential piece of equipment used almost every day during practice.

Ear Drops: When water is left in a swimmer’s ear for an extended period, it causes an ear infection called Swimmer’s ear. This is very painful, but easily avoidable. Drops are available at most drug stores and some grocery stores. The most popular brand is called Swim Ear and is very effective in the prevention of swimmer’s ear.


The Peachtree City Swim League and Pirates are parent run organizations. It would not be possible to run a meet without volunteers. Approx. 15 volunteers are needed at each home meet and slightly less for the away meets. Your help and support are required, AND APPRECIATED, throughout the season. Volunteering is a great way to show the children you support their efforts. At each meet, the following volunteers are needed from OUR TEAM:

Position Description
Starter Starts each event. This volunteer will have the opportunity to set the pace of the meet with an organized approach to keep the races starting promptly.
Announcer Responsible for calling out the current race and upcoming races so swimmers arrive at the blocks on time.
Lane Timer Keeps accurate time, using a stopwatch. Instructions are given prior to each meet.
Stroke Judge


Observes strokes, turns and finishes to see that swimmers comply with requirements for that stroke.

Gathers timer sheets from the timers and DQ slips from the stroke judges and delivers to the scoring table.

Scoring Organizes score cards and DQ slips in preparation for entry into the computer program.
Ribbons Prepares ribbons and places ribbons in folders. May require staying up to 30 minutes past the end of the meet.

To make the meets a success, parents attending the meets must volunteer. If you are unsure of what you would like to do, please contact the coaches for more information. Prior to each meet, at least one adult representing each family should sign up on the Pirates Swimtopia website for a volunteer position. An email will be sent announcing that sign-up has been opened. Thank you for understanding and your continued support to make all our meets a success!

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