Masters Swimming Ontario (MSO) has initiated club and swimmer registration for 2017-2018.
The 2017-2018 season will offer two masters swimming programs in Ontario, one by MSO the other by Swim Ontario (SO). Ontario clubs will now have received the Masters version of SO’s information for
the upcoming season.
As per our June 21, 2017 MSO letter MSO will operate a fully insured, adult swim league independent of both MSC and SO.
The 2017-2018 MSO fees remain at their current levels:
$45 – Club affiliation
$10 per swimmer (club or unattached)
No fees for coaches.
While strongly encouraged, there are no requirements for coaching certification.
MSO swimmer and club directories will be available ONLY from the MSO site at http://ms.mastersswimmingontario.ca/. MSO will no longer have access to the database on the MSC site.
As the system is prepared for the new season, the swimmer identification numbers will be changed to avoid confusion with those used by SNC/SO/MSC. All club names and club codes will be modified
slightly, again to avoid confusion.
There have been lots of questions about the 2017-2018 season. We have tried to answer as many as possible below.
If you have other questions, please contact me.
MSO Registrar – MSOReg@MastersSwimmingOntario.ca
Questions and Answers
Q: What does independent of both MSC and SO mean?
A: Effective September 1, 2017 MSO will no longer be a provincial member of Master Swimming Canada (MSC). Instead MSC has decided to recognize Swim Ontario. MSO will not have a vote at the MSC AGM nor will any MSO affiliated club. Only clubs registered through SO will be voting members of MSC. Only swimmers registered through SO will be considered MSC Registrants.
Q: My club is affiliating with SO. Will I be allowed to join MSO as well?
A: Absolutely yes. In fact your club and all of its swimmers can join MSO irrespective of membership with any other organization. If your club chooses not to affiliate with MSO, then you and any other swimmer can still join MSO as an “unattached swimmer”. We expect there will be a few more than in past years.
Q: Why is MSO offering an alternative Masters programme?
A: Response from the survey that went out with the June 21, 2017 showed wide ranging views, including interest in an alternative program. Whether swimming with a club or independently, approximately
75% of masters swimmer do not compete. Another 10% or so compete only rarely. MSO understands that some members are focused on competing in meets sanctioned within the FINA system and will likely join the SO structure. However, we have also heard from swimmers and clubs wanting an alternative. All swimmers and clubs, including those registering with SO, will be welcome in MSO as they always have been.
The MSO program will be entirely focussed on the original purposes of Masters swimming: fun, fitness and participation at very low cost.
Q: What does “fully insured” adult swim league mean?
A: MSO will continue to provide insurance for clubs, swimmers, coaches and volunteers; for practices and for swim meets approved by MSO. Unlike previous years, MSO swim meets will be open to participants not registered with MSO. In this way swim meets will operated much the same as community road racing events. MSO registrants, SO registrants as well as unregistered swimmers will be able to participate. This will be important to ensure the viability of local swimming events.
Q: Will I be able to compete?
A: Yes and no.
Yes – For MSO-approved meets, the host club must be affiliated with MSO. However, there will be no membership restrictions for swimmer participation. MSO is structuring its insurance policy so that
these events are open to MSO registrants, swimmers registered with SO as well as swimmers not registered with either.
No – To compete in a meet sanctioned by an SNC province like SO, you must be registered with SO or one of the SNC provincial sections (e.g. Swim Alberta, Swim Nova Scotia etc.) or a FINA federation
(e.g., USMS). Being a registrant of MSC is no longer relevant for eligibility to compete at a Masters event, nor is MSC membership relevant for a masters club to be eligible to host a meet. Only
recognition by SNC now matters. Ontario Provincials will be sanctioned by SO. MSC’s 2018 Nationals in Calgary will be sanctioned by Swim Alberta.
Q: Will my results at an MSO-approved meet be added to the MSC results database?
A: No. Unfortunately, independent means independent. Results from MSO-approved meets will be loaded into the MSO (blue) system only. Records will be maintained ONLY for MSO registered swimmers.
Q: What will happen to my previous meet results?
A: Results and any records up until August 31, 2017 will remain on the MSC system since you were a Registrant of MSC when it was achieved. The MSC results database goes back only to 2005. Historical
Ontario records and results are still on the MSO website for Ontario swimmers. Christian Berger’s national and world records are still accessible from the MSC site.
Q: How is my participation in the Million Metre Challenge (MMC) impacted?
A: The tracking system for the MMC belongs to MSC. MSC now requires you to be a paid member to participate. However, the concept of the MMC is not-proprietary. In fact, it was adopted by MSO from
the Australian model and promoted to MSC as a national program. MSO is therefore looking at recreating an MMC for its own members and allow them to transfer their metres. Time will be needed for this to be done.
UPDATE – On August 25, 2017 MSC notified Ontario clubs that swimmers who are not registered with SO will continue to be offered MSC programs like the MMC until August 31, 2018. That means that swimmers only registered with MSO may continue logging their metres via the MSC website.
Q: I am currently an unattached swimmer with MSO? I can’t find how unattached swimmers may register with SO.
A: The SO information circulated August 11, 2017 seems to promote only a club-based system. Unlike MSO and the majority of other provinces, SO does not appear to offer any options for unattached swimmers.
Q: Does a club have to register all of it members with either SO or MSO?
A: That depends on the club’s own structure and administration. The key consideration is how club activities, swimmers and volunteers are insured. Some clubs are self-insured while other clubs depend
on insurance from MSO or SO. MSO insurance covers member clubs and their training sessions, their swimmers and volunteers, as well as Directors and Officers insurance. “Registration before participation” is the insurance company’s requirement. Swim meets, time trials etc. approved by MSO will also be covered by MSO insurance. It is being structured to allow for broad, unrestricted participation. SO insurance is similar but covers only SO-registered swimmers etc. Swim meets are restricted to only SNC registered swimmers or those from another FINA federation like USMS. Your club needs to examine its insurance coverage to fully answer this question.
Q: My club is affiliating with SO and registering all its members there. I would like to independently join MSO. How can I do that?
A swimmer may register independently with MSO as an unaffiliated swimmer. The forms are on the website at http://www.mastersswimmingontario.ca/swimmers/how-to- join/ – please wait until they are updated to the new rates. Better still, we recommend that clubs affiliate with MSO whether or not they affiliate and register their swimmers with SO. The club has 2 options – the club registrar can register club swimmers with MSO as in past years OR the club can let swimmers register independently with MSO and still maintain a club identity.