Athletes are expected to show respect for and follow instructions from coaches, adult supervisors and officials at practices, during travel and at meets. The respect is also to be extended to fellow team members and athletes from other teams. Good sportsmanship is also expected from athletes and parents. As an athlete on the Asheville Lightning Junior Olympics Team you represent not only your team but also the Junior Olympics program, Western North Carolina and the team sponsors. Continual disruptive behavior will not be tolerated. Any athlete not willing to abide by reasonable rules of conduct will not be allowed to participate. Athletes using foul language, poor sportsmanship towards other athletes or disrespect for coaches, athletes, parents or officials will be in danger of being dismissed from the team. The offending athlete shall receive one warning (one false start) and be escorted to his or her parent. A second offense (second false start) and they will be asked to leave the team permanently.
What To Expect At Practice
Practice begins promptly at 6:15 with a short meeting of athletes and parents. Please be on time for practices if at all possible. Attendance at this meeting is important. It will be to discuss the day’s practice, up-coming meets or administrative matters. The team will then jog 1-2 warm-up laps and stretch as a group. All athletes will be expected to participate in the general team warm up and stretching, and attend the team meeting. After that you will then be split into four (4) groups for plyometric and warm-up drills -Group 1: Sub Bantams, Bantams and Midgets; Group 2: Sprinters, Hurdlers and Jumpers (some advanced Midget sprinters or hurdlers may be asked to join this group); Group 3: Distance Runners (800 Meters and beyond) and Group 4: Throwers. Assignment to a Drills Group will be based on your primary event. After drills the athletes will then report to their specialty coaches for the duration of the practice. Practices will be held rain or shine and only interrupted in case of lightning. Parents who are waiting for their athletes at practice are encouraged to walk or jog on the track before practice, and after the short team meeting during the period when stretching and drills are taking place, before the major portion of the practice begins.
Team Drug and Alcohol Policy
Smoking, drug and alcohol use is absolutely forbidden for any Asheville Lightning athlete.
Lights Out Competitor Curfew
The following curfews are in effect for any athlete on the Asheville Lightning team the night before he or she competes. If you break curfew you will not be allowed to compete the next day. These curfews extend also to athletes staying with parents at meets, or at home the night before any meet. Athletes who have finished all of their competitions must respect the competition curfew of other team members who share their room and who are not finished competing. Failure to respect the curfews of your roommates (keeping them from sleeping, waking them up, etc) could result in your being asked to leave the team.
Ages 12 and under: Lights out at 10:00 PM
Ages 13 and up: Lights out at 11:00 PM
For all athletes who have finished their competitions and who will not be competing the next day, the curfew will be midnight.
Swimming Pool Use At Meets
One of the fastest ways for an athlete to negatively impact their performance on the track is to go swimming before you compete the day of the meet. Therefore, swimming in hotel or motel pools is allowed only after you have finished competitions for the day. If you arrive at the hotel Friday night and are competing Saturday, enjoy the pool. However stay out of the pool Saturday until you are finished competing.
Qualifying Procedure At Meets
If you qualify to advance to the next meet in any event, immediately find Coach Agrella ( or one of the Assistant Coaches if he is not available) and tell him you have done so (Parents, this is your responsibility if your child is in the Sub Bantam, Bantam or Midget Divisions). Necessary paperwork then has to be filled out at the Meet Registration Tent in order for you to compete in this next meet. For the Sectional and State Meets, the top five (5) finishers in any event advance. At the Regional Meet, only the top five (5) finishers advance to the National Championship.
If An Athlete Does Not Advance
If a team member fails to advance to the next level of competition, they are invited and encouraged to continue to practice with the team until the end of the season (after the National Championship Meet). One of the goals of the summer program is to help athletes develop for their next year of competition in Middle or High School. Continuing to practice during the rest of the summer will allow this to happen.
The Asheville Lightning Junior Olympics welcomes, encourages and needs parental involvement both at practices and meets. Your participation is vital to the success of the program, and the young athletes you will be helping know this and appreciate it. There are all sorts of areas in which help is always needed, from signing up new members to helping to set up tents at the meets. Please any of the coaches if you would like to help in any way. If you have had coaching or track and field experience and are interested in helping to coach, please talk to either Coach Agrella or Coach Pantas.
Asheville Lightning Hurdle Crew
Asheville Lightning Hurdle Crew at National Meet 2006 at Morgan State UniversityEvery summer at the Regional Championship meet, the Asheville Lightning team volunteers to be the hurdle crew for this meet. All coaches, administrative staff and parents (if they are in attendance at the Regional Meet and are available) are asked to be part of this hurdle crew. Team athletes who have finished competition for the day, especially hurdlers, can also join the crew. Setting up and taking down the hurdles is light exercise, takes place only a few times during the course of the meet and is a lot of fun. As part of the Hurdle Crew you will not only see some great hurdle races from the best seats in the house, you may also receive free lunches (Saturday and Sunday) and sports drinks or T-shirts provided by the Regional Meet host team.