We love it when new people come out ! The Downtown Swim Club welcomes trial swimmers of all levels and swimming experience; however, you should be able to swim a few lengths of the pool with minimal breaks. If you're unsure about whether your current swimming skills are sufficient for our practices, send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. More than likely, we'll be able to assess your level, provide suggestions or find an accommodation.
There is a nominal fee of $15 (plus HST) per swim. To register for a trial swim, go to Calendar, select the practice you would like to attend, and follow the instructions to register. Before your first swim with us, please complete this waiver. Trial swimmers must also complete the online registration and payment prior to your trial swim, otherwise you will not be allowed to enter the water, in accordance with our insurance agreements. When you arrive at practice, ask to speak to one of the board members or coaches, for a quick orientation.
So, you're looking to improve your swimming skills before trying us out? The following exercise is ENTIRELY OPTIONAL and designed for swimmers who are wanting to try out interval training on their own before attending a DSC practice:
- Find a 25m pool with a pace clock (most City of Toronto pools have one), and determine schedule times for adult length swimming.
- A pace clock looks like a "jumbo-sized stop watch", with a large second hand (which makes 1 revolution every 60 seconds). The pace clock allows you to track your time while swimming.
- Choose a good (challenging but achievable) "interval time" for you, on which you can swim 2 lengths of the pool (50m), repeating this 5 times. Your first 50m may seem easy; sticking to the same interval time for all five 50m helps build endurance.
- To determine a good interval time for you: start swimming when the clock says "zero", and swim 2 lengths of the pool at your normal speed, without stopping. When finished, look at the pace clock and calculate how many seconds have elapsed. Add 45 seconds to that time to determine your total interval time. eg. if it took 55 seconds to swim 2 lengths, add 45 to get a total interval time of 1:40 (1 minute + 40 sec). Since you started at "00" for your first 50m, start swimming your second 50m when the clock says "40". Start your 3rd 50m when the clock says "20", etc. (NB. if the swim lane is crowded, you may have to start your next 50m a few seconds before/after your planned interval time, to avoid colliding with other swimmers!)
- After swimming 50m (2 lengths) five times, rest for 2-3 minutes. Swim another set of 5 on the same interval if you can! In swim lingo, you just swam 5 x 50m @ 1:40 (# repeats x distance x interval time)
- As you build endurance at each workout, you can reduce the interval time, and/or increase the number of repeats.
Arrive on the pool deck in your swim suit with towel and goggles 15 minutes before practice starts. This will give you time for a thorough stretch, which is recommended to reduce the likelihood of muscle cramping and injury. The coach plans a workout for each practice. You can speak with them before hand about your level, and what you hope to accomplish during your trial swim. Don't worry if you can't get through the entire workout; stop and rest when you get tired. You'll build endurance in no time!
There is a cap of three trial swims per person. After three trial swims you are encouraged to become a full member of the Downtown Swim Club. Our club is entirely self-funding, so membership fees cover all expenses (i.e. pool rentals, coaching, etc.). All DSC members must also join Masters Swimming Ontario (MSO), which provides liability insurance coverage and also entitles you to enter Masters' sanctioned competitions if you wish.
Masters swimmers from out-of-town, who find themselves in Toronto for a few days (i.e. business trip or vacation) are welcome to join our swim practices. You are welcome to come to one practice, free of charge. Simply print out this waiver, sign the bottom, and bring it to any one of our practices. When you arrive, ask to speak to one of the board members or coaches to hand in your waiver. For insurances reasons, we can't allow you in the water until you've handed in the waiver.
If you'd like to swim with us more than once while visiting Toronto, there is a nominal fee of $15 (plus HST) per guest swim. Swimmers must complete the online registration and payment prior to the event. To register for a trial swim, go to Calendar, select the practice you would like to attend, and follow the instructions.
NOTE: Registration and payment must be completed online prior to your swim, otherwise you will not be allowed to enter the water in accordance to our insurance agreements.
Arrive on the pool deck 15 minutes before practice starts so you can introduce yourself to the coach. Our coach can then place you in the correct lane for your experience.