Stanford Masters Swim Away From Home
We always have swimmers off to see the world on business or pleasure with hopes of getting in a workout away from home. For pools outside the U.S., it is good to remember that the Stanford team consists of swimmers from all around the globe. If one of our swimmers does not know of a good place, they might be able to email a friend or at least use their native language skills to navigate local online swim sites for you. While word of mouth on the pool deck is one way to find a great place to swim, there are several Websites that are wonderful resources for finding pools outside of Stanford. This page lists Coach Tim’s favorite Websites along with a list of rules for visiting a new team.
Visiting and Dropping-in with Stanford Masters Swimming?
Stanford Masters Swimming loves having visitors! Swimming connections and friendships that span the globe happen one workout at a time.
We welcome any and all USMS registered swimmers from beyond the local area to join us for as many swims as they can while they are visiting our area. The more the merrier! If you are visiting from beyond the United States and are registered with an international Masters Swimming federation we welcome you as well!
Here are the 5 things you’ll need to know
For more tips see “Advice for Swimming while Traveling” section at the bottom of the page.
- Let us know you’re coming!
If you know you’ll be visiting the team please shoot us an email so we’ll know to look for you! (Email link here). Of course it’s still acceptable to show up unannounced. Don’t let the lack of an email keep you from coming in!
- What should I bring?
Please bring a hard copy of your current USMS card, a suit, goggles, and a towel.
We require that all drop-in swimmers have a hard copy of their current USMS card with them when they come to swim. Other than that you’ll want your regular swim gear. We have kickboards and pull buoys at the pool, anything else you’ll want to bring (see Equipment page).
- How much does it cost to drop-in?
Stanford Masters Swimming never charges any fee for short term, out of town visitors. We welcome you to spread that news and strongly encourage your home club to offer the same courtesy (especially for Stanford swimmers who travel).
- What do I need to do?
Arrive a few minutes early, sign in at the gate as a guest, and be sure to introduce yourself to the coach before you get in. They’ll be happy to help you find the right lane.
- Enjoy your swim, travel safely, and came back soon!
Etiquette Away from Home
Things to remember when visiting a Masters team:
- Arrive a little early.
- Introduce yourself to the coach and show him/her your current USMS card. Do this before anything else!
- Know in advance what or if you need to pay to drop in. Have cash or a check ready (see also items 9 and 10).
- If you know you will be late, send an email or call the team contact to see if this is OK. If you need to leave early, tell the coach at the beginning of the workout. Some teams do not take kindly to late arrivals or early departures.
- Ask if there is anything you might do to help get things ready (lane lines, clocks, flags, covers, etc.)
- Be sure you are getting in the right lane. Ask the coach to explain how the team works (lanes, workouts, etc.).
- Introduce yourself to your new lanemates. This can be the first step to so many friendships. Without the introduction, it never seems to happen…
- Swim the set as given, or as your lane has decided to alter it (it is masters after all). Do not be the visitor who is “doing their own thing”. You all know what I mean.
- If you have the foresight to take a Stanford swim cap or some other gift for the coach, this often equals free swimming for the duration of your visit. A little gift goes a long way!
- Thank the coach for the workout. Tell him or her that it was perhaps the finest piece of coaching that you have ever had the pleasure to encounter. This somehow makes up for coaches being paid far less than they should be.
Websites (with comments from Coach Tim)
USMS Places to Swim – the USMS list of places to swim, but it is not exhaustive. Teams have to “opt in” to get their information on the site (and often it is outdated). However, it is still a great resource.
Swimmers Guide – the tried and true “staple” of finding a place to swim – kind of a bible of lap pools around the globe.
Pacific Masters Places to Swim – the list of clubs from Pacific Masters, their locations, and practice times. Like USMS, this list if kind of an “opt in” and is not always complete and current.
Metropolitan LMSC Places to Swim – the LMSC site for the Greater NYC area. Many of our swimmers travel to NYC, so this is a good site for you.
USMS Zone and LMSC Websites – the USMS list of LMSCs. If you cannot find a club, but feel like there might be one, look for the LMSC Website. Most have a list of clubs. You can contact most clubs via email, or by phone if it is listed. As a last resort, LMSC registrars or officers are often willing to tell you about local clubs. Beware, everyone thinks that their club is the best!
Know of a site that is helpful, but not listed here? Send the URL and a brief description to the Webmaster: su-masters-swimming-owner at lists.stanford.edu.