Guest Blog by Brian Robbins, Head Grown-Up, Grown-Up Swimming
Yes, you read that right. Grown-Up Swimming. Summer League for adults. 2020 marks the 2nd year that SwimTopia is working with Grown-Up Swimming to expand the Parent/Coach Relay at the end of the meet/season into a series of Championships of the World. Grown-Up Swimming empowers past, present, and future swimmers to get back in shape and have fun doing it. It taps into the nostalgia of swimming as a kid, with the perks of being over 21.
Grown-Up Swimming is the gateway into or back into swimming for adults the same way that summer league introduces kids to swimming for the first time. We are a community-focused and less formal version of Masters, though we encourage all of our swimmers to join up with our USMS teams to train and compete through the “off-season”.
Each league runs a handful of super-fun swim meets (4-5) spread out throughout the summer, culminating in that city’s Grown-Up Swimming Championship of the World. What’s super-fun mean? Good question; it means playing some tunes, swimming some 25s & 50s, eating some good food, and drinking some good drink. Meets operate with very few volunteers. The league provides a ref and computer operator so the meet runs super-fast, the host team may provide a couple of people to watch the food, and the kids time with some wireless watches. It’s all put together so that you almost forget that you’re actually at a swim meet.
The teams are pretty informal too; we only have a few requirements to form a team: a Team Name, a Team Captain, and a Pinky-Promise that everyone can successfully swim from one end of the pool to the other (that last one’s for the insurance company). Some of our teams are USMS programs that use Grown-Up Swimming as a fun way to mingle outside of practice. Many teams are extensions of neighborhood and clubs’ summer swim teams that are taking that Parent/Coach Relay to the next level; they practice in the morning before the kids’ team starts and have a little more fun at the meets than the kids do. Other teams are just groups of friends, and shoot, there’s even a couple of company teams. Looking at you, Mailchimp and SwimTopia.
Speaking of SwimTopia – y’all know them, right?
Here’s what the corporate stiff with the fancy title (i.e. me) has to say about how great it is to manage the leagues and teams through the SwimTopia platform.
“SwimTopia’s easy-to-use league, team, and meet solutions make it easy for Grown-Up Swimming to operate with little to no volunteers. That’s incredibly important to us and our teams because all the typical swim meet volunteers are…you know…swimming in the meets.” – Brian Robbins, Head Grown-Up
Right now, we have leagues in Atlanta, Charleston, Austin, and Nashville and will be releasing schedules as soon as we can in the midst of this COVID-19 Pandemic (more on that below). Find your league today
Does your town have pools in it too? That’s usually a good sign. Let us know why your city should have the next league by applying here.
About Grown-Up Swimming
Okay, seriously, what is Grown-Up Swimming? We are a collection of swim leagues focused on the community of adults who have prioritized their work, family, or anything else above their own health and wellness.
Grown-Up Swimming started in Atlanta, GA, with a group of teams that wanted to have as much fun swimming as their kids have in summer league. That movement has grown up (get it?) to provide a low-pressure, high-fun swimming environment in a number of cities with people of all ages and abilities. Literally: start swimming for the first time since college or high school, swim competitively for the first time ever, or take a break from your 6,000 yard Masters workouts to have some fun.
The blazing fast 25s will give you a chance to get back to your 10 & under days with some short races!
After warming up with the 25s, we will get back to the basics and swim the events and distances you have come to know and love at a swim meet.
The distance meet features 100’s of stroke events and the IM for those of us who love to play wall tag.
Cue the fanfare! We partake in Olympic festivities in our own special way even in off years by swimming long course meters! We will stick to 50s (one lap) with the exception of a 100m (two laps) freestyle.
Grown-Up Swimming? What the heck is that?
A goofy league for folks 19 and over who want to have a laid-back atmosphere to race and be social.
Kinda like slow pitch softball?
Exactly, or summer league swimming for grownups.
Cookouts? Are there really cookouts?
Yep, most of the host teams will run a grill and concession stand for all of your caloric needs!
What are the team requirements?
Eh, there aren’t really any other than a team name, contact information for a Team Captain, and a pinky promise that everyone can make it down the pool without floaties. Though…that would be a fun race format. In all seriousness, you can have 4 people on a team or you can have 60. Or, you can sign up Unattached.
I can’t just leave my kids at home…
Bring ‘em! We need them as timers, and most meets will start off with a “multi- generation” relay, so you can even swim with them!
Start a League Today! www.grownupswimming.com/start-a-league
A note about COVID-19
While Grown-Up Swimming doesn’t take too much seriously, this one is for real. We will be following public health recommendations and orders from the CDC, NIH, and WHO, and will keep all of our leagues, teams, and swimmers apprised with any decisions we make about this season should the pandemic span summer.