USA Swimming will require all of its adult athletes to complete an “Athlete Protection Training” (APT) program by June 23, 2019, or risk ineligibility. An adult athlete who gets an Olympic Trials cut without completing the training could invalidate that qualifying time.
The APT is not part of USA Swimming’s new Minor Athlete Abuse Prevention Policy (MAAPP), the organization says in its informational document. The Athlete Protection Training is now provided through the U.S. Center for SafeSport, and must be completed annually by all non-athlete members (coaches, officials, other non-athlete roles) and by all adult athletes (any athlete over 18 years old). The APT is a free program you take online, and automatically connects to each athlete’s entry in USA Swimming’s SWIMS database.
USA Swimming’s document says that all adult athletes will be required to take the training by June 23, though later, the document says there will be a 30-day grace period to “complete this initial training requirement.” USA Swimming also makes clear that any adult athlete who competes in a meet without completing the training would have all of their swims at that meet invalidated – including qualifying times for meets like Olympic Trials, U.S. Nationals or U.S. Open.
That would mean that we could see some Olympic Trials cuts achieved this summer that are ultimately invalidated if the athlete doesn’t complete these courses in time.
The APT includes three courses: sexual misconduct awareness education, mandatory reporting and emotional and physical misconduct. The APT is not the “Free Safe Sport Training for Minor Athletes” program, and that program does not satisfy the APT requirement.
Also of note: athletes who are 17 and about to turn 18 must complete this training before their 18th birthday, or will risk ineligibility. USA Swimming says that failing to complete the requirement “will result in an athlete’s inability to swim in a meet or at practice.”
Here are some of the important points about this new requirement:
- All adult athletes (18 years or older) must complete the APT.
- Any 17-year-old athlete must complete the APT by their 18th birthday or risk ineligibility once they turn 18.
- Adult athletes must complete the APT every year – it expires 12 months after you complete all three courses.
- Athletes who do not fulfill this requirement will be ineligible to compete in meets or practice, and times swum while ineligible will not count for qualification to any meets.
- This requirement takes effect June 23, though USA Swimming says there will be a 30-day grace period for the “initial training requirement.”