Want to know what makes USA Swimming and Ellis Aquatics different than recreation or summer swimming? This is the place to start. If you still have any questions please don't hesitate to contact a coach or a booster's club member on deck or by email. 

With recreation swimming a nine year old girl has 6 events available at her championships, ranging from the 50's stroke to 100 Free and IM. She will compete against 6-8 local towns, and the same 50 to 100 athletes in her age group across the summer. An 18 year old girl at the same meet also has the same events, but now with less than 20 girls in her age group, in the league. 

This just does not do enough to foster future collegiate swimmers or give athletes a glimpse of the training required to be part of America's best. And it's the goal of our club, our coaches, and USA swimming to offer your swimmers more. 

At eight and younger our athletes have 25's, 50's and 100's available to them for all strokes. When they turn nine the 200 Free, 200 IM, and 500 Free become available. At 11 they can start competing in 200's fly, 200 back, 200 breaststroke and the 400 IM, 1000 Free and the 1650 (mile). Our swimmers train daily with these events in mind, and they know the times required to succeed. 

By making these events available at a younger age our swimmers are fearless team leaders by the time they enter high school. A 14 year old freshman has been potentially training for the 100 fly, 200 IM, and 500 free for 5 years. They've raced each of these events over 50+ times against the best athletes not just in the pacific region but in the USA. They know how to race any event, they know how to train for it, and most importantly they know how to foster the mindset to help and lead their team.

If you've ever been to a recreation swimming invitational, you've likely experienced a 10+ hour long meet, with meets every single weekend for the entire summer. And it's time to take back your weekends! We attend as a club only 1-2 meets per month, with our summer swimmers only asked to attend 3 over the season. We feel this is the perfect blend of putting an emphasis on purposeful training, while not burning out athletes or parents. 

USA Meets have what is called the 4 hour rule. This means a swimmer's first event and last event should be no more than four hours apart. At most meets warm-ups are open at 7:30AM and the meet starts at 9AM. We are usually done a little after 2PM on longer days and our younger 10 and unders swimmers done earlier. 

USA meets are able to do this by running meets in Olympic sized facilities, like our own West High School pool, swimmers will often compete on girls and boys courses, each with their own 8 lanes, and by running meets as Saturday and Sunday events. Swimmers are welcome to sign up for either day, or both and they can enter up to 4 events per day!

There are no limits to how far your athlete can go with USA Swimming. All USA meets are tiered to give every athlete a chance to succeed and win. More importantly, access to qualifier meets mean you can never outgrow the competition or stagnate racing against the same ten kids. 

All swimmers start out attending C/B/A meets that are broken into C division, B division, or A division, with each division having it's own awards and rewards. These meets are relaxed, fun, and "time oriented". Every athlete at a C/B/A meet is only focused on self-improvement and bettering their personal bests. Once an athlete makes their A times they start training for Junior Olympic cuts, where they begin learning about trials and finals, then Far Westerns, and then they try to make the Western Zone team, with each meet getting tougher competition and more recognition. And this is all before they turn 13. 

At 13 swimmers start attending C/B/A meets as well as Senior meets too. From there they work towards international and national meets where they train to compete against Olympians and college athletes. Here they hope to get noticed by a college team or coach. At these higher level meets swimmers witness firsthand the level of effort and focus required by the these athletes to be competitive on the world stage. 

Just as we ask more from our athletes, we ask more from our coaches as well. All of our coaches are life long swimmers and educators who are incredibly passionate about the sport they coach. As USA coaches we are required to maintain active certification in CPR, First-Aid, and Safety training for swim coaches. We submit multiple background checks per year. And we attend annual clinics led by the top coaches and athletes in the sport to ensure we are using the most optimal training techniques possible. We guarantee you that every set we do, and every practice we run has a purpose. 

Head Coaches Clay Basepayne and Pat Windschitl are ASCA (American Swimming Coaches Association) level 3 coaches. This is something only obtained by less than 15% of all USA swim coaches. And all of our coaches are out here on the pool deck, five to seven days a week, every week, all year long, working with athletes to make our part of the valley as competitive as can be. 

Parent Handbooks will be up soon.
If you have any other questions please don't hesitate to ask a coach. Pwindschitl@gmail.com