For training sessions you will need:
Swimming costume – not bikinis/board shorts please. Simple costumes and close-fitting trunks are best for being streamlined and getting a good feel for the water. Some of the older girls wear knee-length suits, but this is a question of personal preference – they are not necessary.
Swim cap – please wear a Bottisham Swimming Club cap for training. Please ensure these are on your head before the start of the session. Each member receives a cap on joining the club, and replacements are available from Karl or Suzy for £5 each. Once a year in December we send off an order for the caps to be printed with the swimmer’s name and any achievements that year eg county/regional/national qualifier.
Goggles – any goggles that the swimmer can tolerate without fiddling with for a 400m swim are good. Each swimmer should please have at least one spare pair in their bag as unfortunately they do have a habit of breaking.
Water bottles – it’s essential that swimmers rehydrate properly during swimming. We recommend at least half a litre per hour, ideally in a plastic bottle with a sports cap.
Fins – each swimmer should have a pair of short fins with them for each training session. These should please be named/initialed. There are lots of different brands available: here are a couple of examples from SwimShop and ProSwimwear online. You can also pick them up/sell them on easily on Ebay.
Bottisham swim team T-shirt and hoody. These stylish and practical items are printed with the swimmer’s name on the back, and can be ordered via Swim Club Manager (Club > Club Kit). Swimmers tend to go for the quick-dry t-shirts and adult helpers get the polo shirts. Cathryn Mellersh manages the kit and sends off an order 4 times per year. She has samples of most sizes, as they seem to come up a little on the small side. Please pay by bank transfer using the reference “[swimmer surname]/Kit”.
For galas you will need:
Swimming costume – we recommend a dry costume for each different session in which the swimmer is competing. Any simple, close-fitting costume is fine. Many of the girls wear compression knee-suits, and the boys wear compression jammers, and feel they go faster doing so, but they are not obligatory – the key thing is to be comfortable and that whatever suit is worn is not too big (which creates drag and air pockets, slowing you down in the water).
Bottisham swim cap – coaches will carry spares.
Bottisham swim t-shirt/hoody – order as above. If not, please bring a t-shirt to cover up poolside and possibly a pair of trousers too. It can be chilly when you’re not in the water and performance improves when muscles are kept warm.
Goggles – again, a spare pair or two is recommended for galas, as they often seem to disintegrate under pressure! Specialist racing goggles are available but not necessary unless you’re swimming at a high level already.
Quick-dry towel – these are great for drying off between races, leaving your main towel for the end of sessions.
Towels – again, one for each session is recommended.
Pool footwear – it’s always sensible to take a pair of flip-flops, jelly shoes or crocs to stop you from slipping by the side of the pool. At some meets, the swimmers can be in a sports hall when not competing so footwear is required.
Food and drink – swimmers need to keep up their energy during long days at Opens so please ensure they have a healthy packed lunch, some snacks for between races and plenty to drink. Bananas and rice cakes are better than sweets for sustainable energy. And please remind your swimmers to clear up after themselves!
Book/homework/games etc – some form of entertainment to pass the time between races is sensible. Please don’t encourage swimmers to bring ipods, phones and tablets etc poolside – the poolside helpers can’t be responsible for expensive equipment, and things do occasionally go walkabout.
Support crowd – please stay and support your swimmer – and all our swimmers – if you can! It really does make a difference.