Each summer, for our a schedule of the swim meets we will attend, visit our Event Calendar here.


This page contains important information about swim meets –  the different types of meets available, and what parents and swimmers need to know about their first meet. Read on to get meet ready!!

Types of Meets

  • Interclub: An informal competition held within the club. Times are unofficial. An import team building exercise! Games, relays, cheers and good food are staples of this event.
  • Developmental: A smaller and shorter running meet where young novice swimmers race. Low pressure, lots of fun, prizes awarded to everyone. Open to Div 3 ‘B’ swimmers and under (Div 2, Div 1, 6&U). A good introduction to racing and summer club competitions.
  • Timed Finals: A regular competition available to all athletes that will host a full event list. Each event is swum once. A longer format than a Development meet but more exciting!
  • Heats and Finals: Regular competitions that include finals in the afternoon, where top-place finishers (normally 1st to 6th or 1st to 8th, depending on the size of the pool) swim a second time, as well as preliminary races in the morning. Emphasis is placed on racing and swimmers get additional racing opportunities to improve. These events are unique and give the fanciest awards to athletes.
  • Championships: A grand heats and finals competition whereby swimmers who make the finals score points for their respective clubs. Thrilling races and an intense team atmosphere to conclude the summer season! Not to be missed. Everyone participates at Regional Championships; swimmers qualify for Provincial Championships by coming top 3 or achieving PQT (Provincial Qualifying Time(s)) standard while at Regionals.

Meet Information

Congratulations Vikings!  If you are reading this, it probably means you have survived the first month of practice and are ready to show your stuff at your first meet of the season!  For new Vikings, attending a swim meet can be an overwhelming experience.  However, with a little preparation and the help of some of our veteran swimmers and parents, your first meet can be a wonderful experience!

With that in mind, here are some suggestions from those of us who have “been there, done that”:

What can I expect at a swim meet?

Swim meets that occur on the weekend are all day events usually starting before 8:00 am and ending around 4:00 pm. Much of the day is often spent outside with all of the swimming families waiting for your child’s next race.   Therefore, preparing for a swim meet is similar to preparing for a daylong picnic.  You will need adequate food, shelter, and activities to keep you, your swimmers, and their newfound friends occupied between races. Many of the Viking families bring canopies or tents to protect their clan from the elements (weather can be variable during the meet).   Lawn chairs, lunch, nutritious snacks, an old blanket/sleeping bag, and a change of warm clothes are a must.  A hungry, cold, and bored Viking is not a happy Viking!

Here is a checklist of things to bring, both for you and your swimmers, to help you get organized:

  • Swimsuit and goggles, 2 of each
  • Swimcap
  • 2-3 towels
  • Warm clothes and blanket
  • Canopy, tent, and tarp (don’t worry if you don’t have one – we share!!)
  • Lawn / camping chairs
  • Cooler packed with nutritious food and drinks (food is often available on site as well)
  • Sunscreen, hat, sunglasses
  • Water bottles (hydration is extremely important for the swimmers)
  • Money and a pen or highlighter for the “meet sheet”
  • Smartphone / camera to capture photos for Twitters
  • Books, iPad, iPod, games (cards / board games for more than 1 player are best)

When should I arrive at the meet, and what do I do when get there?

  • Arrive at least 10 minutes before the start of warm-ups (we will tell you in advance when those start) and find where your fellow Vikings are setting up their canopies.  If you don’t have a canopy, don’t worry – just ask if you can join them.  It’s more fun to share and socialize anyway!  If you are the first to arrive, lay claim for the team to the prime area.  A shady area near the marshalling area and the pool is ideal.
  • Get your swimmers to the pool deck at the warm-up time.   A coach will be on deck to run activation and warm-up.  Warm-ups usually takes 30 – 60 mins.
  • While the swimmers are at warm-up, you should:
    • Sign-up for a volunteer shift.  You can pick up a lot of volunteer hours at a swim meet, but DO NOT reserve multiple shifts at this time.  Many of your Viking friends also want to get their volunteer hours.
    • Purchase a meet program from the host club to determine what events and heats your swimmers are entered in.  For quick referencing throughout the meet, use a pen or highlighter to mark your swimmers’ event number and heat number for each race.
    • Help the Vikings clan set up our camp, then relax, and enjoy a coffee with your fellow Vikings.
  • After warm-ups, show your swimmer where the marshalling area is and inform your swimmer what events and heats that they are scheduled to swim.  If this is your swimmer’s first meet, an older Viking will be available to accompany your children through the process – starting with the pre-race talk with their coach, then on to marshalling, followed by the race, and finally to the post-race assessment by their coach.
  • Get ready to cheer on the Viking clan and have fun!   Keep your camera/smartphone at the ready.  The best memories usually take place at swim meets.

Please remember that parents are responsible for their children at all times during the meet.   Do not simply drop your swimmers off at the meet unless another Viking parent has agreed to be responsible for them.  The Vikings coaches are working on deck throughout the day supervising warm-ups and assessing our swimmers’ performances during races.  Parents should resist the urge to disturb the coaches while the competition is occurring.   If you have any questions or concerns about the competition, ask a veteran Viking parent.  We are more than happy to answer any questions you may have!

Meet Fees and No Shows

The Vancouver Vikings pay ALL meet entry fees.

*Swimmer “No Show” at a Meet = Parents Pay Meet Fees*

This rule applies to ALL meets throughout the summer.   

If you sign up for a meet and fail to opt out of that meet (by updating your Active response online) by the applicable deadline, and your swimmer is a “no show” at that meet, the Vikings will charge you a flat fee of $25 for each meet day missed. This charge will be applied directly to your account. (You are also responsible for your swimmer’s meet fees if he or she is a “deck entry”, i.e. misses the registration deadline and wishes to register on the day of the meet. Note that not all meets allow deck entries.)

If you have any questions please contact your group coach.

Relay Protocol

  1. Coaches are responsible for making up relay teams, not parents or swimmers.
  2. Coaches will follow these general guidelines in the formation of relay teams for all swim meets prior to the Regional Championships:
  • A maximum participation of swimmers available for relays at each swim meet will be achieved by the coaching staff in their relay team selections.  This is the first and foremost priority of the coaching staff.
  • There will be consideration taken by the coaching staff as to the fastest combination within that age category to determine the composition of each relay team.
  • Where there are insufficient swimmers of an age group to form a relay, additional swimmers can be chosen to move up from lower divisions. This selection will be chosen from the remaining swimmers not on relays of their own division.
  • Disciplinary action taken by a Coach may over-ride these guidelines.

If you have any questions about the above, please do not hesitate to ask your Group Coach, or THE Head Coach.


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