Helpful Terminology

Helpful Terminology

Clerk of the Course:

The area to which swimmers report when their event is called; they are organized into heats and lanes here by volunteers, then led over to the starting blocks

Clerk of the Course Board:

Displays the event being called to report to the clerk of the course

DQ (Disqualification):

When a swimmer illegally performs a stroke, he/ she is disqualified from the race and the time is invalid

Strokes and Turns:

A volunteer judge who monitors each swimmer during the race and determines when a DQ call should be made

Flip Turn:

A swimming technique learned while the swimmer is a midget, used in place of a speed turn to change directions when the swimmer has reached the wall in freestyle and backstroke events that are greater than 25 meters/ yards


Swimmers dive into the water to start swimming, before the swimmers of the preceding heat exit the water.  The swimmers of the former heat are expected to remain still at the wall while the new heat enters the water.

Heat Sheet:

A printed compilation of all the events and heats of a meet, organized in order of events, displays each swimmer’s event, heat, and lane

Flutter Kick (scissor kick):

Kick used in freestyle and backstroke, created by alternating downward kicking of the legs

Dolphin Kick:

Kick used in butterfly and optionally in the underwater portions of backstroke, freestyle and breaststroke; both legs must remain together at all times


A period of the training season that usually occurs the week leading up to the culminating event (champs)- the training cycle gradual builds up to a peak, the taper comes after the peak and allows the athlete’s body to recuperate and prepare for optimal performance during champs

Colorado Timing System (CTS):

The official timing system used by the league and used in year-round swimming leagues, uses a touch-pad system.

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