Tonbridge Swimming Club - Participation and Squad Pathway

In September 2015, Tonbridge Swimming club introduced a new participation and squad pathway for the Club.  This structure was revised in 2016 by Peter Withey. The Programme was remodelled again by the Head Coach Peter Withey, Head of Development Glen Isaacs and Ross Hunter and will be rolled out to the club in April 2019.

The new programme and squad pathway is based on the Swim England Optimal Athlete Development Framework (OADF) in tandem with the Athlete Development Support Pathway (an upgraded version of Long term Athlete Development).  The key considerations are of which progressive development and optimal training windows of opportunity related to physical considerations.  The club was chosen as a pilot for the Swim England Club Awards in late 2017 and now has adopted this pathway (in conjunction with the existing NPTS framework). 

There are 5 considerations (pillars):

  1. Technical development
  2. Tactical, Competition strategy
  3. Physical components of fitness and aspects of the ADSP
  4. Psychological, Mental skills and aspects of the ADSP
  5. Lifestyle, Performance focused, work, rest education, Family, Social, Nutrition and Hydration

The Athlete Development Support Pathway allows coaches to balance athletes training competition, recovery and lifestyle through development age (maturation) rather than chronological age.  It is athlete centric coach encouraged pathway.  It is inclusive, meeting the needs of those with a disability and underpins every level of teaching and coaching in swimming

The 5 stages are Fundamentals/Swim skills/Training to Train/Training to compete/Training to win

There are two strands to Tonbridge Swimming Club’s programme:  Competitive Squads and Club Squads.

Full details of our Competitive Squads are given in the squad criteria documents below, along with the attendance and performance criteria for each of our Squads.

We have created two age-appropriate Club Squads for swimmers who do not want to be part of the competitive stream of the club or cannot commit to multiple training sessions per week.  As a club, due to limited pool time, we are now only able to offer spaces in competitive squads if the attendance, performance and age criteria are reached.  Club 1 Squad is for swimmers aged 10 & under and Club 2 Squad for those existing swimmers over 10 years of age who do not want to be part of the competitive stream of the club, but would still like to gain the health benefits of an aquatic sport.  These participants may also have another sport as their primary sport. We also have a second training group within Club 2 for our existing swimmers who still wish to compete on a limited basis but are unable to commit to the minimum training attendance required by the competitive squads or for those that have not achieved the minimum County, Regional or National QT relevant to their age group, as specified within the relevant competitive squad criteria.   There is a requirement from the participants in these Club Squads to make themselves available, if they are selected, for team or relay meets.  

There is no absolute right of swimmers in their any of our Competitive or Club squads to remain there.  If they can no longer commit or meet the criteria for their squad then they will be allocated to a Club squad.  All swimmers will take part in time trials and the annual Club Championships.  Progression through the squads will be assessed by the squad coach and set criteria.

Swimmers have been selected to train in their respective squads based on ADSP protocols and their own specific needs analysis skills set. Obviously, there will always be some exceptions to the rule.  As a member of the Tonbridge SC competitive squads, swimmers will be expected to attend and complete the required amount of sessions and open meets per year set out in the squad’s criteria.  Swimmers who do not attend training or complete full sessions on a regular basis will see a slower progression, may risk their place in the squad and be prevented from reaching their full potential.

Please click HERE to view the Squad Criteria for the Bronze, Silver, Gold, Junior County Development, County and National & Regional Squads.

Please click HERE to view the Club 1 and Club 2 Squad Criteria

Please click HERE to view the LTS Squad Criteria

Please click HERE to view the Squad Pathway Pyramid.