Racing Unplugged: Swim Alberta Racing and Challenges for the 2020-2021 Swimming Season

Val CarrNews

The Will To Win

Over the past several months, Swim Alberta, with feedback and support from several coach working groups, has been working on providing solutions for what will be a unique 2020-2021 swimming season. In addition to the racing and training events listed below, Swim Alberta will continue to plan solutions to engage Alberta’s swimmers.

“The Alberta swimming community has demonstrated how they build champions in and out of the pool by adapting quickly to the continuous changes and challenges of the past six months.” Cheryl Humphrey, Executive Director.  “As we continue to plan solutions to engage the swimming community through this period, the priority of Swim Alberta will remain the safety of our membership, specifically our athletes, and ensuring the shared principles of COVID-19 prevention and the requirements of Alberta Health Services (AHS) are built into everything we do.”

In July of 2020, the Swim Alberta Technical Staff provided a framework for the resumption of training and competition following the extended break. “The swimming community in Alberta has always shown a historical drive for success, resiliency and the will to win in trying times.” Stephen Norris, Performance Technical Director, “We are choosing to thrive and not just to survive.”

The framework included a training direction, targeted windows for racing and recommended racing events for each age group, otherwise known as the ‘swimming passport’.   To conclude the 2020 season, Swim Alberta provided a virtual racing opportunity focusing on the swimming passport events for swimmers who had returned to training through the 2020 Summer Racing Challenge.

The following are events that coaches and registered competitive swimmers should plan for through the fall cycle.  (September – December)

  • Virtual Racing Series
  • Challenge Swims
  • Challenge Training Sets


Virtual Racing Series – “Racing Unplugged”

As Alberta facilities are in the process of re-opening, many facilities are not booking events and AHS has not yet permitted competitions on Stage 2 of Alberta’s Relaunch Plan .  In order to provide a solution for Alberta’s swimmers, Swim Alberta has developed a ‘Racing Unplugged’ format called the Virtual Racing Series.  The virtual series for the fall includes a mid-cycle racing opportunity and a finale, both of which will include individual age rankings as well as club rankings by team size.

Fall Series Dates

Mid-Cycle:          October 19 – November 8 (Passport Events)
Finale:                   December 7 – 20 (All Events)

Winter Series Dates (if required)

Mid-Cycle:          February 1 – 14 (Passport Events)
Finale:                   March 8 – 21 (All Events)

Challenge Swims

Swim Alberta launched the 400 freestyle challenge during the 2018-2019 season and added the 400 IM to the challenge during the 2019-2020 season.  The 400m challenge events will continue during the 2020-2021 season.

Challenge Sets

Swimmers will be provided different training challenges throughout the various phases of the season.  Challenges may include various distances, intervals or specific targets (e.g. 75% kick target time)

If you have questions regarding the virtual series, challenge sets or challenge swims, please reach out to the Swim Alberta staff.