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Swimming Away from Home

We always have swimmers off to see the world on business or pleasure with hopes of getting in a workout away from home. For pools outside the U.S., it is good to remember that the Stanford team consists of swimmers from all around the globe. If one of our swimmers does not know of a good place, they might be able to email a friend or at least use their native language skills to navigate local online swim sites for you. While word of mouth on the pool deck is one way to find a great place to swim, there are several Websites that are wonderful resources for finding pools outside of Stanford. This page lists Coach Tim's favorite Websites along with a list of rules for visiting a new team.

Etiquette Away from Home

Top-ten things to remember when visiting a Masters team:
  1. Arrive a little early.
  2. Introduce yourself to the coach and show him/her your current USMS card. Do this before anything else!
  3. Know in advance what or if you need to pay to drop in. Have cash or a check ready (see also items 9 and 10).
  4. If you know you will be late, send an email or call the team contact to see if this is OK. If you need to leave early, tell the coach at the beginning of the workout. Some teams do not take kindly to late arrivals or early departures.
  5. Ask if there is anything you might do to help get things ready (lane lines, clocks, flags, covers, etc.).
  6. Be sure you are getting in the right lane. Ask the coach to explain how the team works (lanes, workouts, etc.).
  7. Introduce yourself to your new lanemates. This can be the first step to so many friendships. Without the introduction, it never seems to happen...
  8. Swim the set as given, or as your lane has decided to alter it (it is masters after all). Do not be the visitor who is "doing their own thing". You all know what I mean.
  9. If you have the foresight to take a Stanford swim cap or some other gift for the coach, this often equals free swimming for the duration of your visit. A little gift goes a long way!
  10. Thank the coach for the workout. Tell him or her that it was perhaps the finest piece of coaching that you have ever had the pleasure to encounter. This somehow makes up for coaches being paid far less than they should be.
Websites (with comments from Coach Tim)

SWIMMERS GUIDE – the tried and true "staple" of finding a place to swim – kind of a bible of lap pools around the globe.

Laurie Kilmartin Lap Pool Reviews – perhaps my favorite site. This is a list put together by a comedian who swims with Walnut Creek. She travels a great deal for work and has a great grading system for the pools she has visited. What makes this site so great is the commentary. Even if you have no plans to travel it might be worth a look.

USMS Places to Swim – the USMS list of places to swim, but it is not exhaustive. Teams have to "opt in" to get their information on the site (and often it is outdated). However, it is still a great resource.

Pacific Masters Places to Swim – the list of clubs from Pacific Masters, their locations, and practice times. Like USMS, this list if kind of an "opt in" and is not always complete and current.

Metropolitan LMSC Places to Swim – the LMSC site for the Greater NYC area. Many of our swimmers travel to NYC, so this is a good site for you.

USMS Zone and LMSC Websites – the USMS list of LMSCs. If you cannot find a club, but feel like there might be one, look for the LMSC Website. Most have a list of clubs. You can contact most clubs via email, or by phone if it is listed. As a last resort, LMSC registrars or officers are often willing to tell you about local clubs. Beware, everyone thinks that their club is the best!


Know of a site that is helpful, but not listed here? Send the URL and a brief description to the Webmaster: su-masters-swimming-owner at lists.stanford.edu.


* Have a question about the Website? Contact the Webmaster: su-masters-swimming-owner at lists.stanford.edu
* Last update: August 21, 2007 3:55 PM