Gala Info for Parents

Parents at Galas and Meets ​​

At most galas and open meets you will be charged an entry fee. If attending an open meet you are advised to bring food and plenty of drinks, be prepared for a long wait, the average gala will last approximately 2 hours and most are held on a Saturday evening, starting at about 6.00pm. Open Meets are normally held over a Saturday and Sunday, some over 3 or 4 days with National Age Group and Youth Competitions lasting 4 or 5 days. The meet will be split into sessions with each session lasting approximately 2 – 3 hours. You are advised to dress in light clothes – most swimming pools are very hot and humid. If at an open meet it is a good idea to bring a cushion as sitting on a hard plastic or wooden seat for several hours does become uncomfortable. ​

Supporting Your Child

Attending galas and open meets are part of the development process. It is a learning experience for your child as much as providing opportunities to achieve qualifying times for higher level competitions such as County, Regional and National Championships. Supporting your child through a disappointing swim is as important as giving praise when they swim well. ​​Please do not be tempted to ‘Coach’ your child, although you may think you are helping your child to swim better by offering technical advice on ‘how to race’, this is normally counter-productive. Areas of concern should be discussed with your child’s coach by arranging a meeting ​


Galas – take two towels, one to dry with at the end of the gala and one for during to keep warm (or bring a T-shirt). Away galas – taking some drink/snack for the journey home is OK, but we ask them to put their litter in the plastic bags provided in the coach. 


The use of cameras is allowed at most competitions, however, you will need to register your details before being allowed to use a camera, video-camera or mobile phone camera at galas and open meets. This is a requirement of the ASA’s Child Protection Policy.