FAQs

See below for Water Polo FAQs
Click here for Masters FAQs


Water Polo:

When can I join South Coast Aquatics?

What are the seasons?

Do I have to tryout or pass a swim test?

How do I join South Coast Aquatics?

Why would I ever want my child to play water polo?

How old do you have to be to play water polo?

When are you told what team you will play on?
My player is not the best athlete, but he/she loves water polo? Are you just an Elite program?

What are the age groups in water polo?

What are the basic skills of water polo?

How do I learn the rules of water polo?


I have a lot more questions, who do I ask?


When can I join South Coast Aquatics?
You may join SCA at any time. Just find the pool where we are practicing and introduce yourself to our friendly staff. The year is split into four sessions. We welcome you any time and can prorate your fees to when you join a session.

What are the seasons?
South Coast Aquatics has divided its offerings into four quarters: Approx September to November (FALL), November to February (Winter), February to May (Spring), and June to August (Summer). These quarters jive with our competition schedule. Youth compete quite a bit in the fall and summer. Winter is more about development for youth and less about competition. We encourage our players to be swimming. Just check the Calendar section of our web site for practice times and get a sense of the flow. Feel free to show up at the practices and say hello to the coach. Many of our coaches biographies are in our website.

Do I have to tryout or pass a swim test?
Our tryouts are based on a young person swimming proficiently 50 yards of a pool, or two laps of a 25 yard pool. We gauge your ability by this “test”. As a reference point, The best water youth polo players nearing high school swim 100 yards in about one minute.

How do I join South Coast Aquatics?
Please click on the “Registration” tab on the SCA Home Page to register and get going. First, obtain membership for your player in our National Governing Body, USA Water Polo (http:://usawaterpolo.org) at the least expensive membership level to protect us for liability reasons. Armed with your new USA Water Polo number, register at our web site.

Why would I ever want my child to play water polo?
Water polo is a small sport and the ratio of youth playing water polo to the number of athletes playing in high school is VERY LARGE which means there aren’t 300 8th graders vying for varsity training spots in high school their freshmen year like in other land sports. Water polo is an Olympic sport. Many colleges offer water polo. Many of SCA athletes play water polo in high school. Almost all of SCA athletes have splendid high school water polo careers. Water polo is a great background for participating as a lifeguard at pools during summers. Water polo athletes are the best physical specimens in sports. No one is better conditioned than water polo players. Games last 60 minutes. When the game is over, your athlete is clean, exhausted, and hungry. That’s much different than America’s other past times, where game times are longer, very sweaty, and sometimes not always active.

How old do you have to be to play water polo?
Being comfortable in the water is the main criteria to playing water polo. We have players as young as five playing with us. Please approach one of our coaches and determine how to ease into our sport. We also have "Splash Ball" for members ages 5 thru 9. Contact us.

When are you told what team you will play on? My player is not the best athlete, but he/she loves water polo? Are you just an Elite program?
Parents in youth sports tend to forget that athletes continue to mature into high school and beyond. SCA is the launching pad for the sport of water polo or a place where older athletes can find great training and team opportunities. SCA tries its best to provide opportunities for all of its players. We carry numerous teams.

What are the age groups in water polo?
In the water polo world age is determined by your age as of August 1, 20??. In the United States, age groups are currently divided into 18&under, 16&under, 14&under, 12&under, and 10&under. So every player spends two years in one age group. So if your child is water polo 11, for example, she will be playing with 11 and 12 year olds for two years.

What are the basic skills of water polo?
Comfort in the water is the most fundamental water polo skill. Swimming is part of that. Being able to stay high above the water using a leg skill called the “eggbeater” is vital to success. We teach the eggbeater. Learning to handle the ball is another skill that is important. Water polo is like soccer and basketball played in the water. The object is to put the ball in the goal on offense and prevent the ball from going in the goal on defense. SCA believes that understanding defense before offense is vital to a player’s ultimate success.

How do I learn the rules of water polo?
Unlike other sports, water polo action does not stop when the whistle blows. Action begins when the whistle blows. The object of the game is to throw the ball in the goal. Goalies can touch the ball with two hands. All other players can only touch the ball with one hand. Fouls create free throws for the person fouled. In some instances, when the person fouled is grossly impeded, the defender has to leave the game for 20 seconds and the offense has a “power play opportunity.” In the worst fouls, a penalty throw is awarded. Sit back, relax, enjoy and learn. The player’s learn the rules faster than the parents!!!!!

I have a lot more questions, who do I ask?
Matt Warshaw can answer all your questions.
Send him an email at matt@southcoastaquatics.com or call him at (805) 660-2082


FAQs (Masters):

What requirements are there for swimming with South Coast Masters


Am I limited to swimming at a specific workout time or location?

What equipment do I need to get started?

I don’t know how to swim now.  Will you teach me?

How will I know where to swim within a workout?

What are your workouts like?


Do I have to compete in swim meets?


I am a triathlete.  Do I have to swim the other three strokes?

Do you have a special rate for college swimmers?

My child is currently an active local club/high school swimmer.  Can he/she swim with South Coast Masters?


What requirements are there for swimming with South Coast Masters The only requirement for membership with South Coast Masters is that you must join Southern Pacific Masters Swimming, the local affiliate of United States Masters Swimming. The annual 2013 cost for your membership in USMS will be $46.00.This is a mandatory insurance liability coverage requirement. Information on both organizations is available at www.spms.net and www.usms.org.

You may register online with SPMS at: https://www.clubassistant.com/club/USMS.cfm?l=33.  If you are already a member of USMS, you may transfer your team's membership online. For your information, our official team name is South Coast Aquatics.

Am I limited to swimming at a specific workout time or location?
You may swim in as many workouts as you’d like, at either location and at any time.

What equipment do I need to get started?
Please come prepared to swim with suit, towel, fins, goggles, hand paddles, and pull buoy. We provide kickboards. If you have your own kickboard or other specialty equipment, you may use them whenever you’d like. If you do not have this equipment, we can provide loaners for your trial.

I don’t know how to swim now.  Will you teach me?
South Coast is a workout swim team.  We can help anyone with improving their swim technique, stamina and speed.  But, we do not teach swimmers how to swim. 

If you don’t know how to swim, we suggest you start with swim lessons at a local CRPD or YMCA or community lesson program.  If you need private swim lessons, we can provide them upon your request.

How will I know where to swim within a workout?
You will be placed in a lane with swimmers of your comparable ability. As you progress and improve, your lane position will be moved.

What are your workouts like?
Our workouts are challenging but not exhausting. You will be pushed with little rest between repeats, but adequate recovery time after swimming sets.

One hour workouts average about 3,500 yards in length. Ninety minute workouts are about 5,000 yards. They are a balanced blend of warm up, drilling, pulling, kicking and main swimming sets. Distances and intensity levels are adjusted for the ability of each swimmer.

Do I have to compete in swim meets?
You may if you’d like.  We strongly encourage our swimmers to compete and we are very proud of our accomplishments.  But, the largest group on our team is our fitness swimmers. We are widely diverse in ability, personality and competitive spirit. This is the main reason why our team is so successful.

I am a triathlete.  Do I have to swim the other three strokes?
We encourage all swimmers to be able to swim all four strokes.  A triathlete's overall swim fitness will be greatly enhanced by knowing how to swim all four strokes, especially in time of need. However, if you only know how to swim freestyle, we’ll work with that and help you to become the best freestyler you can be.

Do you have a special rate for college swimmers?
Yes.  All currently enrolled college students monthly rate is $50 per month.  This also applies to all school semester break and summer sessions.

My child is currently an active local club/high school swimmer.  Can he/she swim with South Coast Masters?
Yes and no. We’ve been asked this question hundreds of times.  Our USMS insurance liability policy prohibits any/all swimmers under the age of eighteen from swimming with us.

If your child is eighteen…yes.  As long as he/she is an active member in USMS or USA Triathlon.