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 2015 of expanding our membership in the LMSC to 1600 swimmers, we reached 1568 in 2014, but your team can help make that goal.   (The LMSC for NC's bylaws can be found on this web site at http://www.ncmasters.org/bylaws.pdf .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 http://www.ncmasters.org/about.html 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 2014 is registered for the remainder of 2014 and all of 2015.

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.

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 must also be a USMS member. The coach must be a USMS member and may also be 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 Swimmers. 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 and sign and mail in a waiver certificate to the USMS National Office. See requirements on http://www.ncmasters.org/regform.html for links.

A team registration form for you to register your workout group or club can be found on http://www.ncmasters.org/forms/nc-club-registration-form.pdf . for a new or renewing club or http://www.ncmasters.org/forms/nc-workout-group-registration-form.pdf for a workout group of a currently registered club. This is the first thing you need to complete and mail to the registrar, or better yet, do it online.

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 can be found on http://www.ncmasters.org/forms/nc-regform.pdf . Personalized Member registration forms will not be created since the largest percentage of swimmers register online.

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 http://www.ncmasters.org/csm.html . Another team generated web page that can also be hosted for free on this web site is http://www.ncmasters.org/ram

The rule book can be downloaded from the USMS website. There is a $25 yearly fee charge for forming a workout group in North Carolina. For 2014 and 2015, the LMSC pays for the yearly renewal fee for clubs and workout groups that had a minimum of 3 swimmers in the previous registration year.

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 http://www.ncmasters.org/byname.html 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 31, 2014
http://www.NCmasters.org/newteam.html