FAQ’s

How old do you have to be to join the Kingston Y Penguins?

The Y Penguins accept participants between the age of 6 and 16. Swimmers who continue to train with the team after their 16th birthday are welcome to remain Y Penguin members for as long as they continue to compete.

What is the Kingston Y Penguins fee schedule?

 Junior Penguins 6+ years (co-ed)

$275.00 plus YMCA Membership Fee

This group includes swimmers who are not registered as competitive swimmers yet. As part of this membership fee Junior Penguins receive a team T shirt and bathing cap.

Development Penguins

$515.00 plus YMCA Membership Fee

This group includes competitive swimmers up to 14 years of age.

As part of their membership Development Penguins also receive a bathing suit, all meet fees, Swim Ontario fees and Swimming Canada fees.

Senior Penguins

$625.00 plus YMCA Membership Fee

This group includes competitive swimmers over 15 years of age, as well as any Penguin who is swimming at the Provincial and National level. As part of their membership Senior Penguins also receive a bathing suit, all meet fees, Swim Ontario fees and Swimming Canada fees.

Monday – Thursday 3:00PM – 5:00PM, Friday 6:00PM – 7:00 AM

What is the Kingston Y Penguin mission statement?

The Y Penguins are designed to allow children and youth with physical impairments and their able-bodied siblings find pride and success through achievement. The program provides a place where young people can explore their abilities and find within themselves the confidence to pursue their goals and the capacity to develop the skills that will help them see the many possibilities for their future. We want our kids to see possibilities where others see impossibilities, to see challenges where others see obstacles and where others perceive disability, we want our kids to see and focus on their abilities.

What is para swimming?

Para swimming is an adaptation of the sport of swimming for athletes with physical impairments. Para swimming is contested not only at the Summer Paralympic Games, but at the Para Pan Am Games, Para Pan Pac Games, World Championships as well as age group, regional, provincial and national competitions throughout the country and the world. The sport is governed by the International Paralympic Committee.

Rules for the sport are set by the International Swimming Federation (FINA). The majority of rules for Para swimming are the same as those for able-bodied competitions. Exceptions arise to allow full and fair participation. In part, these include the starting position and adaptations allowed for the different ability levels of the competitors. Others adaptations are comprised of exceptions for specific needs of groups of athletes. For instance, a single hand touch is permitted in breaststroke and butterfly if the athlete has a non functioning arm or an amputation.

How are swimmers classified?

Swimmers are classified according to the type and extent of their impairment. The classification system allows swimmers to compete against others with a similar level of function.

Swimmers with physical impairments are allocated a category between 1 and 10, with 1 corresponding to the most involved impairment. Impairments can include single or multiple limb loss (dysmelia or amputation), Cerebral Palsy, spinal chord injury, dwarfism, and numerous other disability groups.

Blind and visually impaired athletes compete within separate categories (S11, S12, S13). The S11 classification corresponds to totally blind swimmers, while competitors in the S13 classification have significant but not total vision loss.

Swimmers with intellectual impairments can compete in the S14 classification.

Numbers are combined with a letter prefix depending on the event type.  An “S” prefix corresponds to freestyle, backstroke and butterfly, while “SB” corresponds to breaststroke and “SM” to the individual medley. This differentiation is necessary because freestyle, backstroke and butterfly are arm driven strokes where breaststroke is a leg driven stroke.

What is the difference between Para swimming and able-bodied swimming?

There is no real difference between para swimming and able-bodied swimming. Exceptions are permitted to allow for individual challenges, but able-bodied and para swimmers can compete head to head at any competition.

What is the difference between Paralympics and Special Olympics?

The primary focus of Special Olympics is to enrich the lives of individuals with an intellectual impairment through their involvement in sport, where the focus of the Paralympic movement is to provide competitive opportunities for athletes with physical impairments.