The club is run under the squad system, which means that it is divided into groups or squads where swimmers train with other swimmers of similar age and ability. Swimmers progress through a squad structure that is based upon a number of factors including technical skill, age, strength and the ability of the swimmer to cope with the training up at the next level.

Training times and squad fees vary according to squad so please check the timetable tab above.

NDSC swimming is organised into the following squads: Development, Academy, Competitive, Performance, Advanced Performance, Youth and Masters.

Development and Academy are the development squads. The emphasis here is on acquiring the basic swimming skills, although many swimmers at this level do take part in internal club competitions and novice meets.

Competitive, as the name suggests, is the first of the competitive squads where the majority of the swimmers are expected to regularly compete in competitions. This is reflected in the workload, which is significantly more than that experienced in Academy. Sessions consist of a mixture of endurance training, stroke technique, drills and start turns skills. Land training is introduced in Competitive and must be attended by all Competitive Squad members.

Development, Academy and Competitive are usually known collectively as the junior squads. Progression through these squads is by acquiring the necessary skills and a set of squad entry criteria exists for entry into each squad. Parents are more than welcome to discuss squad changes with the squad coach.

Above Competitive – in the senior squads – we have a branched squad structure. This system was introduced in order to cater for the fact that swimmers at this stage of their career are likely to have varying degrees of commitment as well as technical skills. From here on progression through the squads depends very much upon commitment and enthusiasm as well as ability.

For those swimmers who decide that they do not want to commit to the rigours of the Advance Performance programme, Youth squad is the natural progression. In general Performance swimmers progress to Advanced Performance squad. Likewise some swimmers may move (or be moved!) from Advanced Performance to Youth if the criteria is not maintained.

Finally we have Masters squad. There are no entry requirements apart from the fact that you need to be able to swim, as we are unable to cater for non-swimmers within the squad system. Over the years we have entered a number of Masters competitions and actually done quite well. All are welcome from novice up to top competition level.

Further details on how these squads are organised and the entry criteria for each squad can be found on the individual squad pages.