Meets & News

  • 2016 Swim Wellington Long Course Champs

    Jan. 22 - 25, 2016

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Meet Calendar


    Useful links

    Handy Hints


    Karori Amateur Swimming Club was formed in 1964 before becoming the Karori Pirates Swimming Club on 2 May 2007. 
It is a community based, volunteer club at home in the Karori Pool, 49 Donald Street, Karori. It offers professional swim training dedicated to providing its members with the highest quality teaching techniques and training programmes.

    If you'd like to join it's not difficult, just follow the instructions on the website or alternatively follow the one page guide available around the swimming pool's noticeboards. Remember to accept the e-mail invitation to join the Karori Pirates competitive swimmers e-mail group so that you get all the latest info re club activities, meets etc. This is important as it's the main method of getting current information out to members and if you don't you might miss something vital such as revised dates or timings.

    However you may well come from a non-swimming background in which case, like we did, you'll have plenty of questions; the sort of thing you only discover the answer to once you have been part of the club for six months! So to avoid that unnecessary six month learning curve below are outlined handy hints that refer to each of the main aspects of club swimming.


    Beyond the info available on the web-site and the one-pager the most useful thing to know is that Steve's coaching (Pirannah Swimming) is separate from the Karori Pirates Club organisation. You therefore have to:

    1) Join the Club

    2) Join Swimming NZ - so that you can compete.

    3) Pay Karori Pool entrance fees - daily, weekly, monthly; it's your choice.

    4) Pay Steve for coaching - sliding scale fee according to which group your child/children is/are placed in.

    5) Buy the Club uniform.


    Entries to meets are made by you using the on-line forms on the website, with e-mails being used to remind you of the deadlines for key steps in this process.

    'Confirmation of entries submitted' will be sent to you by the Race Secretary as an invitation to 'view this doc' on the web-site. Also, but separately, the 'Psych sheets' - this doc confirms which event your child is competing in, what order it is scheduled in the meet, who (and what age) they are swimming against and how they rank against the other competitors with their current recorded times.

    Swim meets are great fun however they are very heavy on volunteer support. They can only happen because club parents volunteer to help what is a very small core of Swim NZ officials - duties are not onerous and there's a section below that refers.

    So to help those volunteering on the day it is really important that you make sure your children are well-briefed on how they are expected to behave and what they should bring to keep themselves well fed, watered and comfortable - a comprehensive guide is on the website. Parents are not only welcome but encouraged to stay at the meets to help, support, learn and teach the children about meet etiquette.

    In the first year go to as many meets as you feel comfortable with/your busy schedule allows - there are some meets more appropriate to older folk and some to younger - to help planning there is a meet calendar on the web-site. The general aim for a beginner, is to record times in the 50m distances (all strokes) and maybe some 100m. In the second year you should be aiming for all the 100m and some longer distances but obviously everyone is different and this is only a guide, so chat with Steve if you have any concerns.

    Where the meet document says "one no-time" that means you can swim only one event that you have not yet recorded a time for. There's a great free app for iPhone and Android called MeetMobile which you can load event data into and get updates on race results during the day even if you're not at the pool.


    Steve: e-mail

    Olivia, Jono and Laura.


     The Club committee comprises of:

    Chair: John Hancock

    President: Jeremy Lang

    Vice President: Nicola Homewood

    Secretary: Chris Birkinshaw

    Treasurer: Richard Norris



    - The Club runs as a cooperative with the hope that all parents will volunteer for some role, be it small (such as time-keeping) or large (President). A friendly hand will help guide you through tasks that require training (all of which is very simple), explaining things as you go. Generally parents qualify as a time-keeper year 1, and IOT (see glossary below) in year 2, with bigger/bolder tasks following from there - should you want to.

    - In addition to the above however, at each meet parents are needed as team managers, sometimes arranging/sharing lifts, organising supply and preparation of food/BBQs etc so your help is always welcome.

    - Anyone who takes photos at a meet, be they keen amateur or really pretty good, could they be prepared to share them with the rest of the Club on Facebook or the noticeboard at the pool. If the latter please contact Jamie Reid and send any good ones to , it's great to have new material constantly ticking over the board, particularly for the children who go past it every swim day, it seems to provide good talking points and much amusement.

    - The club is good at arranging various social activities throughout the year including in-house fun carnivals, BBQs, bus trips, summer camps, fun meets - sign up, get into it and have fun.


    Included because like any new environment swimming has its own language, abbreviations etc that can make things really awkward to start with!

    - Bilateral breathing: Most common in freestyle. Breathing to both the left and right side, many different combinations of stroke patterns may be used to achieve this.

    - Blocks: The starting platforms located behind each lane. Blocks have a variety of designs and can be permanent or removable, but also incorporate a bar to allow swimmers to perform backstroke starts

    - Breaststroke: Arms are moving simultaneously under the water horizontally, with legs doing a "frog" kick.

    - Butterfly/Fly: Arms move together in an 'up and over' motion, while legs complete two dolphin actions per stroke cycle.

    - Cages: The metal cages at the far end of the pool where Pirates swim gear is stored and on top of which sits the payment box.

    - Chief Pirate: Axel Levine the head coach.

    - Circle swimming: Swimmers swim either anticlockwise or clockwise depending on which lane they're in. e.g. clockwise in lane odd number lanes, anti clockwise in even number lanes. This is the best way to avoid collision of arms and is common procedure in regional and national swimming events.

    - Cool down/loosen off: Used by the swimmer to rid the body of excess lactic acid generated during a race.

    - DQ: disqualification

    - FINA: international governing body of swimming; also diving, water polo, synchronized and open water swimming.

    - Flags: These are suspended over the width of each end of the pool approximately 5m from the wall; they allow backstroke swimmers to determine where the end of the pool is. The lane ropes may also change colour 5m out from the wall.

    - Freestyle: another name for the front crawl.

    - IM: individual medley

    - IOTs: Inspector of Turns

    - JOS: Judge of Strokes

    - Lane ropes: The dividers used to set out the lanes in a pool. Lane ropes are segmented 1m apart and are used to dissipate waves.

    - Lap counter: Large numbered cards used during longer freestyle events such as 800m and 1500m. Used so swimmers can see how many laps they have to go.

    - LC (Long Course): events swum in a 50m pool.

    - Marshalling: gathering of swimmers in a controlled area, by officials, for upcoming races.

    - Medley: All strokes are used. This can be an individual event, with one person swimming all strokes. Or it can be a relay event with four people, each swimming a different stroke. The order for individual medley events is: butterfly, backstroke, breaststroke, freestyle. The order for medley relay events is: backstroke, breaststroke, butterfly, freestyle.

    - NT: no time value registered for that swimmer for that particular race.

    - Open water swimming: Swimming in water other than in a pool including rivers, lakes or oceans. Swimming New Zealand runs National Open Water Swimming events for 5Km and 10Km events and 10Km is an Olympic event. Locally there is 'Splash and Dash' both at Freyburg Beach and Petone foreshore plus the Scorching Bay events such as the 'Scorching Triathlons' etc and plenty more

    - Over the top: swimmers who have finished their race remain in their lanes whilst next race starts over the top of those still in the water.

    - PB: Personal Best. This is generally used in the context of a personal best time for a particular event.

    - Pace clock: The big clock on the wall or deck, used for interval training. Swimmers who can read the clock and know their times improve find it easy to monitor their own progress and can give their own send off.

    - Pool deck: The area around a swimming pool. During a meet, only 'authorised people' may be on deck. This is generally just team managers, officials, coaches and swimmers.

    - Pull: A drill where swimmers place a pull buoy between their legs to keep them afloat, replacing kicking and staying balanced.

    - Referee: The head official at a swim meet.

    - Short Course (SC): events swum in a 25m pool (or over 25m course in a bigger pool).

    - Signature Meet: One club hosts all others at a meet (includes organizing, running, taking profits from that meet. Very often held at WRAC - Kilbirnie)

    - Six beat kick: six kicks per full arm stroke. (3 kicks per 'hand hit').

    - SNZ: Swimming New Zealand.

    - Squads: Group of competitive Karori Pirate swimmers according to age. Includes (in order from youngest to oldest) SR - Stingrays, EE - Electric Eels, SH - Seahawks, HH - Hammerheads and TS - Tiger Sharks.

    - Touch pad: The removable plate (on the end of pools) that is connected to an automatic timing system. A swimmer must properly touch the touchpad to register an official time in a race. These are generally backed up by time-keepers. NB/ Move and keep away from the pads after you have finished your race.

    - Tumble turn: Similar to a summersault under the water upon reaching the pool wall. A tumble turn is faster than a 'touch and go' once the technique is mastered.

    - Warm up: The practice and loosening session a swimmer does before the meet or their event. The blood flow to the muscles warm up creates is essential to avoid injury.

    - WRAC: Wellington Regional Aquatic Centre - Kilbirnie

    So ACT NOW! Ring or e-mail and join the best swim club today - it's great fun and the kids love being PIRATES (even the parents have been known to enjoy it!)



    Coaches Corner

    Heading into Summer

    Hi all. It's great to see all swimmers back into their routine. Thanks to all parents for making the start to term 4 so smooth. Lots going on in the Pirate world as we head towards Summer. Cheers Steve 22 October 2015

    Posted on: 25 November 2015 Read the full post

    End of Term

    Hi all. Well done to all our swimmers and parents at our club champs. Last day of term is Thursday September 24th (Earlybird swim meet that morning). Term 4 starts on Monday October 12th. Cheers Steve

    Posted on: 12 September 2015 Read the full post

    Pirates Treasure

    Swimmers of the week sponsored by Hell Pizza Northland


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    Wall of Fame

    Read all about the Pirates' club champions, international competitors, record-breakers and place-getters at Wellington and New Zealand championships.

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    Photo Chest