Swim Terminology

Welcome!  You might be here because you are new to Swim Team or maybe like me you just feel there is a lot that you don't know.  It can all get confusing at times with all the swim jargon.  This is where you can find all the information to help you navigate the waters of being a parent on a swim team.


What do N, R, X & XX mean?

James River Aquatic Club categorizes swimmers through time standards. They use these time standards to have swimmers compete with swimmers of the same time standard.  The way JRAC seeds a meet is for time efficiency so your child might end up in heat with a XX, X, or R swimmer.  Do NOT let this discourage your swimmer and remind your swimmer they are there to compete against themselves.  Doing the stroke right and dropping time is all that matters.

N = Novice  First Level.  Each team may swim an unlimited number of novice swimmers in the novice events.  Freestyle is always a novice stroke in all meets.  There will be one other stroke and it will alternate amoung the backstroke, breaststroke, and butterfly.  For the mites, 8 and Under, they are allowed to swim the novice stroke of the week or backstroke.

R = Regular  Second Level. In standard meets, each team may enter only three regular-level swimmers in each event. 

X – Third Level. In standard meets, each team may enter only three X-level swimmers in each event.

XX – Fourth Level.  In standard meets, each team may enter only three XX-level swimmers in each event.

QUA Champs Qualifying Time.  More information below.

What does QUA mean?

Times have been posted and your child see's a QUA beside their time.  This means they have swam a qualifying time for Champs.  Please note that this does not mean your swimmer will compete at Champs.  Each team is only allowed to bring two swimmers in each time standard catagory for each event.  This means that usually the top two fastest times will be invited to Champs.


What is DQ?

DQ – Disqualification. This happens when a Strokes and Turns judge observes a swimmer failing to swim the stroke in the recommended manner.



Yards Vs Meters

Almost all the pools in the JRAC league are 25 meters with the exception of two.  Times posted will be faster but remember these pools are yard pools and times will need to be converted to meters. 

The following pools are yard pools:

Ginter Park Dolphins

Glen Allen Gliders

NOVA Aquatics @ Regency (Championship Meet Pool)

*Conversion - Multiply yard time by 1.105 and round to two decimal places.


Why isn't my swimmer swimming a specific event?

1.  Regular meets allow swimmers to swim in 3 individual events and 1 relay.  That means your swimmer cannot compete in all events.  The Championship meet is the only meet that a swimmer may swim in 4 individual events and 1 relay.

2.  The swimmer is just not ready to swim the stroke legally. The coaches will monitor and evaluate swimmers during practice.


Why is a N swimmer swimming in a R heat?

JRAC allows N swimmers to "Swim up" if there are not enough R swimmers in an event.  Once a swimmer makes an R, X, or XX they have to swim in that category and can not swim down.