[This message was sent to parents March 1 as the season kicked off. Copied for reference here, and for late registrants.]
Welcome to this year’s Saints Philip and James Track & Field Season. The coaches and I are looking forward to a great season.
[Long message alert!]
This year, communication will largely be done through our blog, https://sspjtrack.wordpress.com/. The email list becomes unwieldy for a group this size (150+ email addresses) and frankly, not too reliable. With the blog, you can subscribe and get emails as you wish on whatever email accounts you want. If you have any questions or need anything, you can of course contact me by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Our blog will be our primary means of communication for the year, and this blog will be how I communicate practice schedules, meet assignments and meet results to you.
General information about the season and our team can be found on the blog at our Parent’s FAQ Section: https://sspjtrack.wordpress.com/parents-faq/
Our First Two Weeks of Practice
Believe it or not, our season starts today! The weather is not cooperating with us and it’s a bit cold for us to get started outdoors. We have scheduled our first two weeks of practice in the SSPJ Gym (107 N. Ship Road, Exton, PA). Coach Julie has planned some aerobic and body weight exercises to help us shake off that winter rust.
These practices will be for Grades 4/5/6/7/8 & 3rd graders born in 2005:
Monday March 2, 6 – 7
Thursday March 5, 6 – 7 (parents meeting at 6:45)
Monday March 9, 6 – 7
Thursday March 11, 6 – 7
If the weather warms up miraculously, we’ll move our practices outside to Downingtown East High School.
After our gym practices, our weekly practices will be:
(starting March 17)
Tuesdays 5:30 – 6:45
Thursdays 5:30 – 6:45
Saturdays 9:00 – 10:00 (not subnovices)
at Downingtown East High School’s Track.
Subnovices will start practicing with the team Tuesday March 17.
For weeknight practices, you’re welcome to stay and run or walk on campus or on the track, but please be back to pick up your child no later than 6:30. Coach Don would like to go home and have dinner.
Practices start promptly at the time listed. This is a very large group and we’re most successful when we can get in and get working.
For the outdoor practices, your child must bring and wear sweatpants and sweatshirts for our warm-ups at the beginning of practice. (Did you see how I underlined that this season?) When it’s colder, wear gloves and a winter hat, and many layers. Once they warm up they can remove layers. Keeping the muscles warm as they are beginning this activity is a way to reduce soreness and improve performance, so we’re going to enforce this this season. Through at least mid-April – If they don’t wear sweatpants to practice they’ll be given some out of the lost and found pants to wear. And I’m guessing they won’t like them.
We ask that you be please be prompt for practices. Maybe even be there a few minutes early. Know that we will start promptly at the listed time. Some students have conflicts with CCD’s on Tuesday nights and we understand. It’s perfectly fine to grab your child for CCD on Tuesday at 6:15 and head over to school. CCD requirements take preference over athletics.
It’s perfectly fine to miss any meets that you have conflicts for, but please tell me if you can’t make any of the meets. Our season includes four practice meets – those are used to learn and improve and get better for our series of Championship Meets at the end of the season. As we get nearer the Championship Meets I’ll confirm with you if you child would like to participate in these meets, and if they do, and do well, they’ll advance to the next meets to hopefully participate in the Archdiocesan Championships.
If your child is participating in another sport, make sure to let me know when you fill out our questionnaire you’re given at the parents meeting. At this age, one of our most serious risks of injury is overtraining and we want to make sure to keep the kids healthy and happy.
We’re happy to have anyone attend whenever they can, but know that they may not get meet or relay team assignments if they can’t make practices regularly.
Our subnovice program is designed for our K – 3 students, excluding those born in 2005. This is a supportive developmental program with a focus on fun and games and preparing for the meets. I’m looking for a few subnovice parents to help coach these athletes. If you can help and work with the kids under my direction, please contact me at email@example.com. Without help, we won’t be able to support this important part of our program.
Subnovices won’t participate for a few weeks until it warms up, and we’ll do a parent’s meeting during their first week of practice.
Our last two boys teams have won third place trophies at the Region Meets, and we have sent dozens of boys and girls to the Archdiocese Championships over the past few years, even winning a girls individual Archdiocese Championship. We’ll work together as a team to achieve our best as a team towards boys and girls team results, but know that we will work with each of the kids to help them achieve their best and beat their best results. This is a sport where we can do this and emphasize that you are simply racing against the clock and trying to achieve their best. After each meet, individual best results are highlighted every time for every child that achieves their goal – race wins are generally not.
March 29, Meet #1 (12:45 p.m.)
[April 5, Easter Sunday]
April 12, Meet #2 (12:45 p.m.)
April 19, Meet #3 (12:45 p.m.)
April 21, Penn Relays (qualified athletes)
April 26, Meet #4 (12:45 p.m.)
* May 2, Region 17 Meet (Saturday) (Henderson High School)
[May 10, Mothers Day]
# May 17, Area A Championship (Plymouth Whitemarsh High School)
# May 30, Archdiocesan Championship (Saturday) (location TBD)
* Everyone participates in the Region Meet – including subnovices (one race)
# Participate in these meets if you qualify as an individual or relay team to move on
Our four practice meets will probably be held at Bishop Shanahan High School, but this isn’t confirmed as of yet. I’ve heard rumors that the Archdiocesan Meet will be at Villanova, but that’s not confirmed, either. Franklin Field’s track is being refurbished right after the Penn Relays, so Archdiocesan Championships won’t be at UPenn.
I’m sorry for this long email, there’s lots to communicate and I want to answer many questions that arise each and every season. Speaking of which, if you have any questions, double check this email and the parent’s guide on the blog and then let me know at firstname.lastname@example.org or my cell 61*-864-7503.
Thank you so much for the opportunity to work with you for another season, and we’ll look forward to seeing you out there on the track soon!