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    Team Handbook

    Parent  Handbook (Revised 3/4/2016)

    Welcome to the Muirfield Marlins swim team.  Thank you to all the swimmers, parents and volunteers for contributing to our team.  Our season consists of 7 swim meets; including six (6) league swim meets (3 at our own Muirfield Pool) plus the All-County meet held at the St. Peter's Rec Plex on August 4, 2Ø18.

    Marlins Mission Statement

    To provide an organized family activity focused on supporting our youth that promotes team spirit, sportsmanship, thrill of competition, and development of swimming skills while enhancing the Muirfield community and neighbor relationships.  Participants will be both encouraged and expected to maintain a team attitude and contribute to team goals through individual effort.  Our swimmers will be rewarded for teamwork, effort and performance throughout the season and at our year-end awards celebration.  It is our objective to celebrate our swimmers and ensure they grow from their time with the Muirfield Marlins.

    Meet Eligibility

    Practice will be held every week day throughout the season.  Our coaches will encourage swimmers to make as many practices as possible.  The league requires a minimum of two (2) practices a week (not including vacations) to remain eligible for meets.  Attendance will be recorded at each practice.

    Swimmers may not be older than 18 as of June 1st of this year to be eligible to swim. All swimmers must be able to swim at least one length of the pool unassisted before swimming in any swim meets.  Beginner swimmers will be allowed to work up to this requirement within the sole discretion of the coaching team.

    Parents/Swimmers Must Give Advanced Notice of Meet Attendance

    All seven (7) of the meet eligibility sheets will be available for on-line sign ups, in advance of each meet.  Any swimmer that cannot make a meet must inform the coaches as soon as possible because the meet events are assigned as much as a week in advance of meets. Unexpectedly absent swimmers create havoc and sometimes disappointment for other swimmers during meets.  Swimmers who have a request to swim a particular event also must inform the coach well in advance of the meet, but not all requests can be accommodated.  Sometimes swimmers may be asked to swim events that they have not requested for the good of the team.

    At a MANUAL Swim Meet

    Please be on time (30 minutes before the swim meet warmups) and keep track of your children.  As soon as swimmers arrive, they need to check in with one of the coaches.  Look for the Marlins banner and the event cardholder.  This will be the team area for the meet. The event cards will be organized by the first letter of your last name or event number.  After finding your event cards see the coach or coach helper and have your events marked on your hand.  Swimmers may leave their cards in the holder until the event, or take them out and hold them / have parents retain them.  Remember the event card must accompany the swimmer to the bullpen, unless it is a relay card.  One member of the relay team or the coach, coach helper, or parent relay helper for the 6 & under will give the relay card to the bullpen. 

    After swimmers’ hands are marked, swimmers should report to the pool for warm-ups. After warm-ups swimmers should stay in the team area. This is safer and it is much easier to find swimmers who should be in the bullpen.

    At an AUTOMATED Swim Meet

    Please be on time (30 minutes before the swim meet warmups) and keep track of your children.  The Marlins transitioned to automated swim meets, and we use “Meet Manager” software by Hy Tek.  This software is by far the most commonly used swim meet software and streamlines/simplifies swim meet operations.  Prior to the swim meets, programs are distributed with swimmer assignments for every swimming event/heat/lane.This helps streamline and simplify swim meet operations and result recording.

    Parents please use a Sharpie to write your child’s hand their event/heat/lane information PRIOR to the swim meet.  Also include the swimmer number (1, 2, 3, or 4) for relay events. The order is shown on the swim meet program and this is how they also know which stroke they’re swimming in medley relays.  Writing this on the swimmer’s hand reduces confusion since there won’t be any heat cards for the kids.


    • E2 H1 L4 100 IM
    • E8 H1 L2 200 Free relay, swimmer 3
    • E30 H1 L2 200 M relay, swimmer 1
    • E45 H1 L4 100 Back
    • E53 H1 L6 100 Free

    Coaches carry printed copies of the meet program should any questions arise.

    Meet Checklist

    • Arrive at the designated warm-up time (usually 5:30 pm)
    • Mark hands with event numbers
    • Parent workers pick up their name tag with worker assignment from the Worker Assignment Board, which will be located near the event cardholder
    • Swimmers warm-up
    • Obtain event cards as needed
    • Report to the Bullpen when event number is called
    • Swimmers perform your best and support your teammates during all events
    • Parents look for ways to help, always be pleasant, and have fun

    Parent Worker Responsibilities & Penalties for Failing to Work

    As you are aware, it requires parent volunteers to conduct a successful swim meet; both Home and Away meets.  The requirement and minimum expectation is that one parent representing each swimmer works one shift (half) each meet.  

    For home meets we need about 25 people for each half and about 20 for each half at away meets.   After committing to your parent worker schedule, it will be up to you to find a substitution.  If you are substituting for another parent please pick up that parent’s name tag at the beginning of the meet. 

    When you or your substitute arrives at a meet, pick up your name tag(s) from the Worker Assignment Board and check in. If you or your substitute do not pick up your name tag and work as assigned, you will be counted as a “no-show.” The $150 check collected from each family with your swimmer's registration will be cashed if your worker shifts are not completed.  A second “no-show” from the same family will result in all swimmers from that family being excluded from meets for the remainder of the season.  No refunds of registration fees will be given.

    Parent Worker Assignments

    Parents will be asked to work in one of the following roles:

    • Timer 
    • Runner
    • Bullpen
    • Ribbon Table Sorter
    • Ribbon Table Score Keeper
    • Stroke Judge

    HOME Meets:

    • Announcer/Starter
    • Concessions
    • Concessions-Griller
    • Setup & Tear-down

    Description of Worker Assignments


    There are three timers in each lane with at least one from the opposing team. First half Timers obtain a Muirfield stopwatch from the container sitting next to the Worker Assignment Board at the beginning of the meet. Second half Muirfield Timers should be sure to switch and obtain a stop watch from a Muirfield parent NOT the opposing team.

    Each timer in a lane times the swimmer in their assigned lane and all three times are written on the event card given by the swimmer to one designated writer/timer. The runners will collect the completed cards after each event. Timers must work quickly and be ready for the next heat / event. Always read the event card and double check swimmer’s name and distance of race as well as listen to the announcer.

    Timers may help prevent a backstroke swimmer from hitting the wall with their head but should not lean out to the swimmer before they reach the wall. Be careful not to interfere with the swimmer.

    Timers are not stroke judges and should not comment to swimmers, stroke judges or anyone else if they think a swimmer should be disqualified. Timers should remain positive and encouraging to swimmers.


    Runners work each meet collecting the cards from the timers and running them to the ribbon table for scoring.

    For 25 yard events, runners take the cards from swimmers and run them to the timers at the other end of the pool.

    Runners should alert the scoring table workers to any unusual issues with the cards, such as if the wrong colored card was used for a boy or girl or a late swimmer swam with another event number.


    Bullpen workers are critical to the pace of the meet. The following tasks are necessary for the Bullpen workers:

    - communicate swimmers needed in the bullpen

    - update the display with current event numbers for swimmers to see

    - seat swimmers in the bullpen according to their lane numbers and events

    - combine events when possible to fill all lanes to speed up the meet; make more efficient use of available lanes

    - do not make a swimmer swim alone. If there are seven swimmers, for instance, place 5 in heat one and two in the second heat trying to make sure each team is represented in each heat. Bullpen workers should also try to put swimmers from different teams next to each other. You can combine boys and girls in the same event in a heat if necessary to fill a heat and help speed up the meet.

    For each event:

    - Update Event Card for Swimmer (Lane Number / Heat Number - if applicable)

    - Send swimmers (with Cards) to appropriate Lanes

    - For 25 yard relays, walk swimmers 2 and 4 to their lane at the other end of the pool. Give the card to the first swimmer in the relay.

    - Ensure announcer knows which Event is current (or combined) 

    - Bullpen workers must communicate to the announcer what events are swimming next and whether the heat is combined to avoid confusion.

    - Rotate Bullpen and request additional swimmers for upcoming Events

    Ribbon Table Sorter

    The Ribbon Table Sorter is responsible for the following tasks:

    1. Receives the event cards from the runners.

    2. Sorts the cards by event number.

    3. Circles the middle time or average two times if only two are recorded on the card. If there are three times and two are the same, the sorter uses the matching time.

    4. Puts the cards for each event in order and label the places (1st, 2nd, 3rd, etc.)

    5. If two swimmers have the exact same time, both will earn the same place and the next place is skipped. For example, if two swimmers tie for 2nd, each is given 2nd place and the next fastest swimmer is given 4th place.

    Ribbon Table Score Keeper

    The Score Keeper is responsible for the following tasks:

    1. Writing down the names of the first six (6) places of each event on the score sheet.

    2. Scoring the points for the highest placing swimmer for each team according to the chart below.

    3. If two swimmers in an event (one from each team) have the same time, each are awarded the same number of points, assuming they are the highest placing swimmer from their team in the event.

    4. After entering the score you then pass the cards to the Ribbon Sorter to sort ribbons with the event card and place in the file for each event in each teams ribbon box.

    5. Total cumulative scores at the bottom of each page and carry forward the score to the top of the next page.

    6. Each score sheet is given to the Announcer to announce the score and the score sheets are then posted on the fence.


    Place    Individual              Relay  

    1st          7 points            14 points 

    2nd         5 points            10 points 

    3rd          4 points              8 points 

    4th          3 points              6 points 

    5th          2 points              4 points 

    6th          1 point                2 points

    * Ribbon Table Writer - Not Currently Staffed

    The Ribbon Table Writers are responsible for the following tasks:

    1. After the event is written on the score sheet the cards are given to the Writers to complete the ribbons as needed. Muirfield does not write its ribbons at the meet. They are entered into the database and labels are printed by the coaches the next day.

    3. Ribbons and cards are placed into each teams’ ribbon box by event number. Be sure to place the correct place ribbon with each Muirfield swimmer’s card.

    The host team is responsible for providing the ribbons, with the exception of purple participation ribbons, and making sure the ribbons are distributed by the end of the meet.

    Stroke Judge

    Each team must provide two (2) Stroke Judges each half. Stroke Judges must be certified by completing a league training session. Each stroke judge is responsible for observing the swimmers in his or her quarter of the pool (one-half the width and one-half the length). The Stroke Judges communicate using headset radios.

    In the event a swimmer needs to be disqualified (DQ), Stroke Judges should follow this procedure:

    1. Only DQ a swimmer when you have clearly observed a disqualifying stroke. If you did not see it clearly, it should not be a disqualification. When in doubt, side with the swimmer. Judge only your quadrant and do not point out a disqualifying stroke in another quadrant to another Stroke Judge. If a swimmer is swimming slowly and is at the end of the pack, do not DQ them. Have mercy!

    2. Raise your hand upon seeing the disqualifying stroke.

    3. Communicate over the headset the lane number and the reason for the DQ. For example, say “DQ lane three scissor kick.”

    4. The Stroke Judge positioned closest to the timers for the lane where the disqualified swimmer competes marks the swimmer’s card with the DQ reason and initials the card.

    5. The Stroke Judge closest to the swimmer should attempt to provide the swimmer reason for DQ as politely and discretely as possible.  This may help the swimmer learn from their mistake; make every attempt not to upset the swimmer as they may have additional events / competition remaining.

    6. Know the stroke rules and have your booklet with you. If a league representative questions your decision, listen to their opinion and check the rules. If you are wrong, you may change your ruling, but do not take offense. Only the stroke judge that made the ruling may change it. Most league rep’s just want to make sure you understand the swimming disqualification rules, not challenge what you saw.

    Disqualification Reasons and Rules (not all-inclusive):

    Consult for additional information

    The technical rules of swimming are designed to provide fair and equitable conditions for competition and to promote uniformity in the sport. Each swimming stroke has specific rules designed to ensure that no swimmer gets an unfair competitive advantage over another swimmer.

    Trained officials observe the swimmers during each event to ensure compliance with these technical rules. If a swimmer commits an infraction of the rules that is observed by an official, a disqualification (DQ) will result. This means that the swimmer will not receive an official time and will not be eligible for an award in that event. A disqualification may result from actions such as not getting to the starting blocks on time, performing strokes in an illegal manner, or unsportsman­like conduct.

    DQs are also a result of technical rules violations. They include but are not limited to:

    • Freestyle: Walking on the bottom, pulling on the lane rope, not touching the wall on a turn, or not completing the distance.
    • Backstroke: Pulling or kicking into the wall once a swimmer has turned passed the vertical onto the breast. Turning onto the breast before touching the wall with the hand at the finish of the race.
    • Breaststroke: An illegal kick such as flutter (freestyle), dolphin (butterfly), or scissors (side stroke); not on the breast; alternating movements of the arms; taking two arm strokes or two leg kicks while the head is under water; touching with only one hand at the turns or finish.
    • Butterfly: Alternating movements of the arms or legs; pushing the arms forward under instead of over the water surface (underwater recovery); a breaststroke style of kick; touching with only one hand at the turns or finish.

    For specific language on any technical rules consult the USA Swimming Rules and Regulations book. Violations of the rules are reported to the Referee. The rules require that every reasonable effort be made to notify the swimmer or his coach of the reason for the disqualification. If your child is disqualified in an event, be supportive rather than critical. For beginning swimmers, a disqualification should be treated as a learning experience, not as a punishment. A disqualification alerts the swimmer and coach to what portions of the swimmer's stroke need to be corrected. They should be considered in the same light as an incorrect answer in schoolwork, they point out areas that need further practice. Disqualifications are necessary to keep the competition fair and equitable for all competitors. A supportive attitude on the part of the official, coach, and parent can make a positive situation out of the disqualification.

    Parent Relay Captains for 6 & under swimmers - not currently staffed

    When not scheduled to work at one of the assigned tasks above, parents may be asked to help get the 6 & under swimmers in place at each end of the pool for relays. The duties of this relay captain are:

    To identify each relay swimmer during warm up time to confirm they are in attendance.

    If anyone is missing, immediately notify the coach because substitutions must be made.

    When the bullpen is getting close to calling the relay event, gather all the kids on the relay. Have them hold hands and lead them to the bullpen. Do not approach the bullpen until all swimmers are present. If you cannot find someone, have an older swimmer help you.

    Stay with the relay team in the bullpen, but stay out of the way of the bullpen workers.



    The Announcer is responsible for controlling the meet and keeping it moving forward as efficiently as possible. Announcers provide reminders regarding worker assignments, bullpen reporting requirements, introducing the National Anthem at the beginning of the meet, etc.

    It is important for the announcer to be in constant communication with the bullpen to understand and announce which swimmers are on the blocks, how many heats are in each event, and whether there are combined events. The announcer makes sure timers are ready before each event, tells the swimmers to take their marks, and sounds the horn to start the event. The announcer sounds the horn several times to stop the swimmers in the event of a false start.

    The announcer also gives the timers directions on switching ends of the pool for 25 yard events. The announcer reminds the second half workers to report at mid-meet.

    The announcer should keep the meet lively and entertaining for the attendees; ensure his/her voice is projected clearly and that the meet is enjoyable for all.


    Concession stand workers set up food and candy.  Workers must be at the booth at all times and follow sanitary guidelines for handling food.  Workers prepare food or sell items and make change. You will also need to distribute water once each half for the meet workers. Never leave the booth unattended.  Our Concessions Chairperson is Bridget Switzer and Co-Chairperson is Julie Stemme.  In addition to these individuals, we will need an additional volunteer worker shift each half.

    Concessions manage their own budget and will purchase, collect and restock their own inventories throughout the season.  At the end of the season, or as needed, collected funds will be given to treasurer for deposit.

    Concessions - Griller 

    Concession Griller needs to arrive a minimum of one hour before warm ups. Workers must be follow sanitary guidelines for handling food. Responsibility includes cooking of  hot dogs and hamburgers so food items are ready and waiting for swim meet attendees upon arrival.  Once grilling is completed, this worker is free to enjoy the remainder of the meet as a spectator.

    Setup and Tear-down

    Although specific individuals may be assigned for setup and tear-down, it is most efficient if all Muirfield parents pitch in to help set up before home meets and clean up afterward, even if you are not assigned this task as a parent worker.  If you cannot stay until the end of the meet, at least make sure you do your part to keep the pool area clean. With everyone's help, setup and tear-down goes very quickly.

    For Home Meets the Muirfield pool closes at 4:00 pm to allow for setup. 

    Setup includes:

    - Removing lounge chairs from the pool deck through the back gate.

    - Two tables need to be moved to the corner near the deep end for the ribbon tables.

    - The starter blocks must be carried from the storage room behind the bathrooms and put in place. 

    - Lane lines must be set and tightened.

    - The announcer stand must be brought out from the same storage room as the blocks and set up at the corner of the deep end near the Ribbon Tables.  The speaker system needs to be set-up and checked.

    - The Bullpen benches must be set in place in the corner of the deep end nearest the parking lot. The benches are stored in the pump room.

    - The backstroke poles must be positioned approximately 15 feet from the ends of the pool.  The flags must be stretched between the poles across the pool.  The poles are on the pool deck and flags will be in the swim team meet container in the cabana storage room.

    - The lane markers must be placed at both ends of the pool and the bullpen event numbers must be placed in front of the bullpen.


    2016 will be the 1st year for this 2 year suit.  Our team suit is the Speedo Deep Within:  Girls Flyback $62 and Boys Jammer $40.  The transition 2017 suit into the 2018/2019 Suit is the Tyr Viper:  Girls $55 and Boys Jammer $37.  A Johnny Mac's representative will attend our Team Kickoff Meeting to assist with fittings.  Suits and fittings are also available at any Johnny Mac's location.  Our nearest site is 5819 Suemandy Road, St. Peters, MO 63376.  The phone number of this store is 636-278-6300.

    EVENT PARKING - Muirfield

    Parking for practice or meets is only permitted in the pool parking lot and the West side of Muirfield Drive.  Please be considerate of our neighbors and do not block their driveways or drive on their lawns.  If you live in Muirfield, please try to walk or ride bikes to practices and meets. 

    We are excited that you are part of the Muirfield Marlins!  We are your Marlins Leadership Team...and we are working to make the Marlins a great experience for your swimmers!

    Glenda Hanstein

    Christie Tutschulte

    Dave Bostelmann

    League Reps:  Dax Neiders and Kris Newman

    Questions or comments, please contact:  

    Glenda Hanstein (636) 699-2194 or


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