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Heatherfield Swim Team - General Team Info

Heatherfield is a competitive summer swim team for ages 5-18 in Lower Paxton Twp. (Harrisburg area, near Paxtonia Elementary).  We are a member of the Mid Penn Swim League and compete in the "A" (top) Division.  Our season runs from May 30 through the end of July and includes daily practices (Mon-Fri) and weekly swim meets on Saturday mornings.

We swim at the Bristol Club pool in Heatherfield, on Lopax Road near Devonshire Heights Road.    

The foundation of the Heatherfield Swim Team is our team unity and family atmosphere. We promote the physical, mental, and emotional development of our swimmers by providing a safe, fun, and competitive environment and emphasizing teamwork and good sportsmanship.  We are committed to both team and individual success by helping swimmers of all ages and ability levels reach their potential.  Our goal is for every swimmer and family to have a positive experience by working together, making new friends, improving skills, and having fun!

We have an experienced and dedicated coaching staff and usually have at least 3 coaches at each practice (usually 5 coaches for younger levels).  Head Coach Justin Spitzer has been with Heatherfield for 31 years! (12 as a swimmer, 19 as a coach)  We also have a large (10+) and talented staff of assistant coaches.

Our 2017 season begins May 30.  We practice on weekday evenings the first 2 weeks until the end of school, then practice weekday mornings until the end of July.

We compete in Saturday morning meets from June 17 - July 29.  There are also a few optional evening invitational meets.  All swimmers compete in meets, regardless of age or ability.  Strong meet attendance is critical for team success!

Practices are broken down into several levels, each with their own time, based on age and ability.  This allows for a smaller coach-swimmer ratio and more individual attention.

Heatherfield has swimmers of all ability levels, from beginners to future college swimmers

Our goal is to strike an ideal balance - teaching technique, working hard to build speed and endurance, yet also having fun!

Competitive swimming is a great family sport, since boys and girls of all ages (5  - 18) can be on the same team!

Swimming is great for fitness (both cardio and strength building), learning valuable water safety skills, making new friends, and building self-confidence.

We've enjoyed great team and individual success in recent years - see our team news page for details

Best of all, our team is a big family and swimming at Heatherfield is a lot of fun!!
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WHY HEATHERFIELD??

 

1. Close-knit team, great family atmosphere

            *We aren’t just a swim team, we’re a big family!   Swimmers return year after year and continue to grow and improve……and all of our coaches are former Heatherfield swimmers, most of them for 10+ years.          

* Heatherfield is a very supportive, family-oriented program with great team spirit and sportsmanship

* We've been in the MPSL "A" Division since 2005, including six 2nd place finishes            

 2. Individual attention

            * We have 4 different practice levels (each with their own practice time) based on age/ability, and within each level we separate swimmers further into 3 or more groups.

            * Minimal lane crowding and higher quality practices

            * Large coaching staff (10 assistants) allows for small group and individual instruction.

            * Younger swimmers usually have 1 coach per lane, often with the coach in the water with them

           * Tools such as video recording (both from meets and practices) help swimmers  see (and correct if necessary) both what they are doing well and what they need to improve technique-wise.

            * We regularly work on starts and turns - at least twice a week on average.  
                       
* Again in small groups and often using video.

            * All swimmers are valued and receive coaching attention, not just the best swimmers

 3. Challenging, but balanced, practices

             * Pool practices include both technique instruction and endurance/speed workouts

            * Small practice groups allows us to have workouts that are "just-right" for each level, and avoid the crowded lap swimming that can result if there are too many kids per lane.  

            * Dry-land workouts 2 - 3 days a week for level 3 and 4 swimmers

            * We work hard, but have a lot of fun too; one of greatest strengths is striking a good balance.

 4. Technology

            * Video recording of swimmers at practices and meets, plus showing instructional videos

                        * We have a small room right at the pool where we can do that before/during/after practices
                        * Underwater camera for a unique perspective

            * Digital pace clock - Easier for swimmers to see/read during workouts and track their times & intervals
           
           
* Electronic start platform - Straps to top of blocks and connects to start system and digital pace clock
                        - digitally measures swimmer reaction time from "beep" until swimmer leaves the block
                        - great for improving reaction time and also lots of fun!

            * Relay Exchanges - using platform and clock mentioned above, plus touchpad
                        - measures time between one relay swimmer hitting wall and next swimmer leaving block

                        - here's a link to a video demo: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cjKwk7fI9Q

             * Timed Turns - using touchpad and clock, records time from first impact with wall (hands or feet) and                                       feet pushing off

                        -video demo: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I1TYiTrzXls