Starting A New Masters Team in North Carolina

This page is intended to be a guide line for anyone thinking about starting a new US Masters Swim Team in North Carolina.

Our Local Masters Swimming Committee (LMSC for North Carolina) has a set of bylaws which require at least 5 swimmers to make a team, it is hoped that each new team can be significantly larger than that, but of course, you must start somewhere. If you feel that your team can start with 5 swimmers, then it is a good idea to begin the team building process. The LMSC for NC has a goal for 2012 of expanding our membership in the LMSC to 1200 swimmers, we reached 1141 in 2010, will not quite reach it in 2011, but your team can help make that goal.   (The LMSC for NC's bylaws can be found on this web site at .They haven't been updated in quite a few years).

The structure of our organization is one big parent club, North Carolina Masters Swimming (NCMS) with multiple workout groups. You can read about our organization in Starting a team can be made easier if you are affiliated with an age group team, where coaching is available to provide good work outs and instructions to new members.

The North Carolina registrar handles registration for each team's members in North Carolina in order to facilitate timely registration of each swimmer for both new registrations, transfers, and renewals. Swim Team renewal information is generally sent out early in October and each individual swimmer is sent a renewal email notice early in November.

USMS Membership runs from January 1 through December 31 of each year, but swimmers can renew or become new members for the following year in the months of November and December. As an example, a new swimmer registering on November 1st of 2011 is registered for the remainder of 2011 and all of 2012.

There is no proration of dues, however, a discounted registration for the current year is available only in the months of September and October. Someone registering in September and October online only pay the disounted fee, and paper registration forms list the correct end of year fees owed in September and October. For new teams, the best deal is to have members register in November.

Your team's personalized registration forms (in a pdf document) for new members will be created by NC's registrar and and placed on the web site, and the generic registration form will have your team listed along with a contact and their phone number. Once a team name has been chosen, you can get these individual forms for your members and have them register with USMS, specifying your team. If they are already members of North Carolina Masters Swimming Club (or another workout group in NC), their affiliation with your team is easily changed for them to be listed as members of your workout group of NCMS.

Every new and renewing swimmer is encouraged to register online and pay via credit card, this way there is no delay of receiving membership and the swimmer can print their card for proof of membership. Regsitration is easy, swimmers link to the registration link for North Carolina choose the NCMS club, and select their workout group.

Just a reminder about the requirements for USMS swimming, where your pool may require that formal team practices be insured for secondary accident and liability coverage. The USMS requirement is that all members must hold current USMS membership, and that there be a coach on deck supervising the formal team work out. The coach must be either a USMS member, or a USA Swimming Certified Coach. Also, USA Swimming youth members can swim with USMS members only if the coach on deck is a USA Certified Coach, and they are swimming in a different lane from the Masters Swimmer. For new people (age 18 or over) who want to try out with a team, they can only do so for a MAXIMUM of 30 days prior to registering, and only if they have not been previously registered in the past year.

A team registration form for you to register your workout group or club can be found on . This is the first thing you need to complete and mail to the registrar.

If you decide to be an independent club, and not a workout group of NCMS, then your chosen abbreviation for your club must be verified to be available. You must also have your club registered prior to anyone being able to register with your club, this includes yearly renewals. It is highly recommended that to start out, you choose to be a workout group of North Carolina Masters Swimmers, which will allow your swimmers to participate in meets relays with other swimmers from North Carolina if your group cannot get enough people to form age group relays, the parent club concept allows this.

Blank forms for new members of unnamed teams can be found on if you want to write in your own team prior to a personalized team form being created for you. A personalized form for your team will be placed on NC's web site with links to it once a team name has been chosen.

There will also be a web page on NC's site dedicated to your team should you not already have a website, and provide information to the registrar so one can be created, please review an existing one, such as CSM, and sending an e-mail to (NC's Registar, George Simon) to create one for your team with current information provided by you. You would be surprised at the number of requests and hits to these web pages, and having the current information is helpful to potential new members. Also, if you want more information displayed, just notify George in order to update your page. The CSM example is located at . Another team generated web page that can also be hosted for free on this web site is

The rule book can be downloaded from the USMS website. There is no charge for forming a workout group of NCMS, however, should you choose to form your own unique club and not be a part of NCMS, the fee is $30 yeary, and you must have your club registered before anyone can join with your club.

Also, if you are not already aware, each registered member's name is placed on our web site with their current registration number and team affiliation, at These lists are generally updated as soon as someone registers, realtime.

Thanks, and if there is anything the registrar can do once you have decided to form a USMS team, such as sending you an e-mail list of your members addresses and phone numbers, please e-mail me at

North Carolina Masters Swimming Website
Return to Masters Swimming in North Carolina  home page.
Date: October 28, 2013