A Comprehensive Guide: What to Bring to Your First Swim Meet

What to Bring to Your First Swim Meet

As your child or grandchild's first swim meet approaches, you may find yourself wondering about the essentials to pack for the big day. While your young swimmer is focused on their performance in the pool, you, as the supporting parent or grandparent, have a different kind of preparation to consider. This guide will help you pack for the meet and ensure that you have everything necessary to make the day as enjoyable and stress-free as possible.

kids smiling at their first swim meet

Comfort Items

Swim meets can be long, and spectator comfort is crucial. Bring folding chairs or blankets for seating. Many venues have limited seating options, so having your own guarantees a comfortable spot. Don’t forget a good book, magazine, or tablet to pass the time between events.

Weather Appropriate Clothing and Items

Check the forecast and plan accordingly. If the meet is outdoors, consider items like hats, sunglasses, and sunscreen for sun protection. For indoor or cooler weather meets, layers are your best bet as temperatures can fluctuate.

Snacks and Hydration

Pack a cooler with plenty of healthy snacks and water. Swim meets often have concession stands, but they may not offer the healthiest options. Fresh fruits, nuts, granola bars, and plenty of water and sports drinks will keep everyone's energy levels steady.

Towels and Extra Blankets

Always bring extra towels. Swimmers will need them, but they're also handy if the weather turns or to make hard bleachers more comfortable. An extra blanket can also serve as a makeshift picnic spot for meals or snacks.

First-Aid Kit

A basic first-aid kit with Band-Aids, antiseptic wipes, and pain relievers is a good idea. Include personal medication or any specific medical necessities your family may need.


Remember that younger siblings may quickly get bored. Pack coloring books, small toys, or other quiet activities to keep them entertained. Don't forget chargers for any electronic devices you bring along.

A Copy of the Meet Schedule 

Usually available online before the meet or at the venue itself, the program lists the events, participants, and their respective heats. Having one on hand helps you track your swimmer's events and lets you plan your day better.

Team Swag

Show your team spirit with banners, temporary tattoos, team shirts, or hats. Just remember to keep cheering respectful and sportsmanlike. 

Essential Documents

Keep copies of any necessary documents, such as health insurance cards, emergency contact numbers, and even a list of any allergies or medical conditions your child has, in case of an emergency.

Patience and a Positive Attitude

Perhaps the most crucial thing to bring is a supportive and positive attitude. Whether your young swimmer comes first or last, they should feel that they've made you proud. Remember, these are learning experiences that should be fun and educational, not just competitive.

Being a swim parent or grandparent is an exciting journey. As you cheer on your swimmer, remember that the goal is for everyone to have a fun, enriching experience. With the right preparation, you'll be able to focus on the joys of watching your child or grandchild grow, compete, and enjoy the thrilling world of swimming. The first swim meet is a big step in this journey, but with this guide, you'll be well-prepared to make the most of it.

Contact us today to learn more about how we support everything swim team!