Rules and Regulations: Swimming (Open)

Last updated: April 26, 2023

Download a PDF here – LYG23_Swimming_ Info_Rules_v5

SWI 1 The London Youth Games Swimming competition will be held under Swim England Laws and Regulations and the Swim England Technical Rules of Swimming. The Open Competition will be subject to the Swim England Open Meet Licensing Criteria and will be run under the LYG Conditions for Closed Competition 2023.

SWI 1.1 Any non-technical rules not covered will be decided by the LYG Sports Lead and the Competition Director.

SWI 1.2 Any scenario not covered specifically covered by these rules will be at the discretion of the Competition Director.

SWI 2 Age Categories

SWI 2.1 The following age groups and respective maximum and minimum date of births will apply to the London Youth Games Swimming Competition:

Event Age Category Oldest DOB Youngest DOB
Novice Junior U14 01/09/2008 31/08/2011
Open Junior

(inc. Junior Para)

U14 01/09/2008 31/08/2011
Open Senior

(inc. Senior Para)

U17 01/09/2005 31/08/2008

SWI 2.2 Competitors are not permitted to enter this competition if they are ineligible. No exceptions will be made.

SWI 2.3 It is the responsibility of competitors/parents/team managers/local authority staff to ensure all competitors details are entered correctly at the time of submission, and that they are eligible to compete for their borough under the London Youth Games Games Rules, and in accordance with the age groups outlined for the competition.

SWI 2.3.1 In the instance a competitor is found to be ineligible, they will be disqualified from the competition entirely, and the borough will receive a points penalty as per the Games Rules.

SWI 3 Eligibility Criteria

SWI 3.1 Novice Criteria Participants entered in this event must not have participated (or qualified) in any individual event in their relevant County Championships or above (i.e. Regionals or Swim England/British Swimming Nationals) in the year of competition (September 2022 – July 2023).

SWI 3.1.1 This restriction applies to all individual events and relays at the LYG and is not stroke specific. Check eligibility via Individual Best Times | Swim England (

SWI 3.1.2 Please note that a swimmer is eligible for selection if they swam for their club in a relay team only.

SWI 3.2 Para Eligibility Multi Classification (Para) events are open to young people who have been allocated Athlete Classification Status by British Swimming. Classification to be declared upon entry.

SWI 4 Squad Size Boroughs are permitted to enter a maximum of 76 swimmers total competitors made up of the following squad composition;

  • Novice = 24 (Girls = 12 / Boys = 12) – 24 total
  • Open Junior (Girls = 13 / Boys = 13) – 26 total
  • Open Senior (Girls = 13 / Boys = 13) – 26 total

SWI 4.1 Boroughs are permitted to bring all 76 swimmers entered to the event on the day however only 1 swimmer will be able to compete per event on the day per gender e.g., only one swimmer can compete in 50 metres Backstroke.

SWI 4.2 The following information MUST be supplied for each swimmer during squad submission;

  • Novice: Name & DOB
  • Open: Name, DOB, Swim England Registration Number & Classification of Para Swimmers

SWI 5 Kit & Equipment Competitors must wear a swimming costume, goggles and provide their own towel. Swimming caps are encouraged.

SWI 6 Competition Format This event will consist of a Novice Junior Championship and an Open Junior & Senior Championship for each gender. The Open Championship will include a Para event for Junior and Senior.

SWI 6.1 All heats will be seeded on entry times where supplied.

SWI 6.2 Competition Structure

  • AM – Novice Competition (Junior)
  • PM – Open Junior & Senior Competition (inc Para Events)

SWI 7 Competition Rules Swimmers may only compete in up to one individual race and two relay events. Events and race distances are as follows;

Individual Events: Team Events:
50 metres Butterfly 4×50 metres Freestyle Relay
50 metres Backstroke
50 metres Breaststroke 4×50 metres Medley Relay
50 metres Freestyle
Multi Classification 50m Freestyle (Open Championship only) – non scoring  

SWI 7.1 All events are Heat Declared Winner (HDW)

SWI 7.2 A junior swimmer is not eligible to compete in a senior event and senior swimmer is not eligible to compete in a junior event. Any breach of this rule will result in disqualification of the borough from the competition.

SWI 7.3 For swimmers to use a shallow racing dive from the starting blocks Team Managers must be satisfied that they have achieved the standard of Swim England Preliminary Competitive Start Award. If they have not achieved this award, they must start from the side of the pool or in the water.

SWI 7.4 At the discretion of the Competition Director teams will be able to join up on the day where a borough does not have all 4 relay participants attending the event to allow participation. This will be non-scoring.

SWI 7.4.1 Such applications must be made 45 minutes prior to the start of each session.

SWI 8 Scoring Overall borough results will be split by gender.  The results will be determined on the heat declared winner principle.

SWI 8.1 Only the results in the Open Championship races will contribute to the overall borough scoring. The Multi Classification events will be non-scoring.

SWI 8.2 In all scoring races individuals and teams will receive points based on their finishing position ie 1st place winner will receive 33 points, 2nd place = 32 points, 3rd place = 31 points and so on. The overall winner will be the borough with the highest number of points accumulated across all scoring races.

SWI 8.1.1 In the case a borough does not have a swimmer or receives a DQ they will receive 0 points.

SWI 8.3 Incomplete Competition If the competition is cancelled or suspended, the following steps will be used to calculate a final result;

  • Results from all completed events are combined and used to identify the overall winner.
  • Event types: individual (50m free, 50m back, 50m fly, 50m breast), relay (4x50m medley, 4x50m free).
  • Minimum requirements: to determine a completed event all heats must take place. To determine a result for the competition 1 event must be completed.
  • Tied team: will not be separated once scores from events are combined, except if the top 3 teams have the same number of points, then the highest number of 1st place event finishers will be the deciding factor, then 2nd place event finishers and so on.
  • Borough entry: if a borough has entered the competition but not an event that is used in the scoring calculation, they will be placed in last position.

SWI 9 Officials Each team must provide at least one J1 or higher qualified Official. Officials may be used in any capacity and must be available all day. Please provide your official’s details by Wednesday 14th June here –

Please contact ASAP if you are unable to provide an official.

SWI 9.1 It is not permissible for one official to officiate for more than one borough.

SWI 10 Medals & Trophies Medals and trophies will be awarded as follows:

SWI 10.1 Medals shall be awarded for 1st, 2nd and 3rd placed competitors/relay teams for each race (individual & relays).

SWI 10.1.1 Medals will be awarded to Para Swimmers in the MC events based on Para Points.

SWI 10.2 Overall Borough Team medals shall be awarded to 1st, 2nd and 3rd placed squad per competition and gender.

SWI 10.3 Overall Winning Borough trophy shall be awarded to the overall winning Borough squad, per gender in the Open Championships event only.