When and Where

Basically we can offer 18 - 24yrs Seniors and 25+yrs Masters sessions on all* (but see below) evenings of the week and some extras, as well as a non-Club session early on Saturday mornings. We make very occasional use of the 50m pool at the K2 Sports Centre, Crawley on Sundays, but, for Masters, this is sadly not yet a regular routine - details are announced by email etc in advance.

Who are we

The Masters squad has comprised over 100 swimmers in all, from the 18 - 24yrs Seniors & Students who can swim at most Masters Meets and Championships, and all Masters ages at present from 25 through to 75+yrs. Abilities and competitive ambitions vary enormously, from purely recreational/fitness swimmers to very competitive Masters, and have included a couple of former Internationals and a former Commonwealths trialist. Though we would love to see everyone competing, there is really no obligation (but it doesn't stop us dreaming – and cajoling!). 

How much

Club Masters Membership can be arranged in three ways, membership year is January to December: The current fees can be seen on the Fees page.

M2 Masters allows two swims per week, on any night (plus Wednesday am session and any of the 50m Crawley sessions at no extra charge) and they don't have to be the same session each week - so entirely flexible. Subs can be paid annually or in twelve monthly payments. This includes the obligatory ASA Registration Fee (otherwise £25.50 for Competitive Cat 2 Swimmers (all events) or £8.50 for non-competitive Cat 1 swimmers - who can still compete in Club Championships and Closed Competitions (including the Surrey Masters Championships), plus the SE ASA Region Fee (£4.00 and £3.00 for Cat 2/Cat 1 swimmers) and this includes insurance for pool swimming and Open Water training and events etc..

M3 Masters allows up to three swims per week, on any night (plus Wednesday am and any 50m Crawley sessions). Subscription includes all ASA Fees.

M4 Masters allows swimming at ALL the above sessions and subs includes all the ASA Fees etc as well.

Fees are adjusted for those joining part way through the membership year and are invoiced via the Membership Secretary and/or Treasurer. Completed Club Membership & Medical forms and ASA Registration forms should be passed to Phil Sears in the first instance. Member and Medical forms may be downloaded from the website, ASA forms are available from Phil - who usually carries a supply of all forms. A £25 discount is available for family members in any squad – check with the Membership Officer.

There is also a Student membership with very preferential terms for those 18+ in full-time education, if that is of relevance. Allows swims at all or any Club sessions AND includes the ASA & SE Region Registration Fees.

Discounts may be available for Family Membership, genuine cases of hardship, or for Masters who are unlikely to make normal training sessions for maternity, geographical or business reasons. Enquire via Phil in the first instance, or via the Membership Secretary.

Competition Opportunities

You will see on this website, and the annual programme circulated, the range of local events we go to, and there are internal Club Championships (ASA Licensed) as well throughout the year, with Masters medals, etc. We have the 50m sprints now in the New Year, followed later by 100m all events and in the Autumn we look forward to the 200s, 400IM, 400/800 and 1500m Free! Our DSC Masters results are age adjusted according to an internationally agreed format, so good for age performances are recognised and can win trophies!!

The Classics

Dorking swimmers have travelled to the LEN European Masters Championships, in exciting locations like Slovenia in 2007, and in 2009 etc and London Aquatic Centre 2016. We have had a number of representatives at the FINA World Masters Championships since 1996 etc, including 2010 in Sweden etc. The next FINA World Masters are in Budapest July 2017 and the 2018 LEN European Masters will be at Kranj, Slovenia in September.

Every year the Surrey ASA Senior & Masters Sprint Championships is our most important mass participation event ( in 2010, for the 3rd year, winning Womens Team (Individual), the Combined Relays and the aggregate Top ClubTrophies! The Men that year were unable to make it a clean sweep for a third year, nevertheless we won 3 Victor Ludorums and brought back 47 Gold, 29 Silver and 21 Bronze medals. In 2011. Despite a significant medal haul and a Victor Ludorum, we finished a well placed 2nd overall). The Club Relays Trophy was regained in 2012 and 2013). The SE Region Long Course (February) and Short Course Champs (October) (3rd Club of 70+ in SE Region in 2008 and 16 Gold, 16 Silver and 16 Bronze medals and a Championship Record in 2009), and of course the ASA National Masters Championships in late October (10 Silvers and 3 Bronze in 2009 and another good haul in 2010 and 2011).

In October 2010 two of our Relay teams achieved British and European Masters Records (at the SE Region SC Champs), 200+yrs 4x100m Freestyle and 160+yrs 4x100m Medley Relays - a first for any Dorking swim!

Many DSC Masters have been selected to swim for Surrey in the InterCounties Masters Championships in November during the last 6 years, with a best position for a long time for Surrey in 2011. Team for 2016 will be selected following the Surreys and the SE SC Champs etc.

A strong and sizeable team has, over a number of years, accepted the invitation to compete at the Olympos Marlins "Jokers" Gala, a sprint and relay meet and we hope to be invited again in the future, an ideal opportunity for newcomers to try a taste of competitive swimming - the format of the event demands a large team and all will be welcome across the age groups (sorry no Seniors) in this fast moving and exciting gala, followed usually by supper!

It was Epsom Masters' turn to host a "Festive Silly Relays" evening followed by supper just before Christmas 2015, an entertaining event now in its 7th year. Swimming by candlelight, dressing up and down in pyjamas, and the infamous beer relay - all serious stuff! (Dorking's turn to host at Christmas 2016!!)

We'll be delighted to see you at all or any of these events if you find yourself drawn!

Swimming Decathlon

Organised by the ASA throughout each calendar year, results in licensed meets are compiled automatically in ten events, grouped by distance and stroke, with points awarded and age adjusted according to an international formula. The resulting points list is maintained for all to see, and DSC Masters swimmers and the Men's and Women's teams do very well each year in this National competition. Progress can be followed on the ASA/British Swimming website

Local Fun and a good cause

For nine years we won the Dorking Rotary Swimarathon Trophy, for a team of six swimming the greatest number of 50m continuous relay sprints in 55 minutes (our best is 111), though the overall record still eludes us! As well as introducing a fast ladies team in the midday swim off, a further 60 Dorking Masters also participate early on the Saturday morning (£1,000+ raised for charity each year). We booked a similar number of teams in 2016 and regained the Trophy for top score, having lost it by less than 25m in 2015!

Endurance Challenge

We can even offer partcipation in an ASA National event in our own home pools, in the ASA T30 Challenge, or the BLDSA T60, - swimming continuously to log the greatest distance covered in that number of minutes. We have picked up medals of all colours in both individual age group and team entries. Just another little twist to a training session!

Away from the taste of chlorine

We can also offer Open Water swim opportunities promoted by both the ASA and the BLDSA etc., such as the SER Open Water Series including the Brighton Pier to Pier (Mens team trophy - Top Club outside Sussex in 2008 - Women too but sadly no equivalent trophy!), Eastbourne 2km and 5km, a large group of Masters and Juniors (800m) usually at the Southsea 2km Pier to Pier, Dover Harbour 2km, and a small group of Masters have swum in Southsea for the SE Region Open Water Champs (1500 or 3000m - Masters 60-64yrs Silver Medal in 2010). And 60-64 Age group Silver in the SE Region Open Water Series (five events).

As from 2013, the 2016 SER OW Champs are held at a beautiful lake venue near Chichester and will incorporate the Surrey Open Water Championships – a must for anyone interested in OW swimming.

There is also a plethora of OW events now on the calendar, in rivers, sea and lakes, some even allow wetsuits!

One swimmer also mastered the Straits of Gibraltar and the 27km Lake Zurich swims in 2007 and made a first attempt at the English Channel but succeeded as a team member in 2009, whilst another conquered the famous Hellespont swim across the Bosphorus in 2007 and Padstow to Rock in 2009! 2008 saw a Dorking swimmer conquer the 20km Rottnest Channel Swim in Perth, Australia and attempted to do so again in 2009, but he finished well in the 2009 round Key West Florida swim. Two DSC Masters prepared to join a 2 team race across the English Channel in August 2009, but due to an unplanned health set back Coach Phil had to withdraw, whilst the other successfully completed the crossing. Two also swam the Vibes & Scribes River Lee Swim over 2000m in Cork in 2009, 2010 and 2011 etc.

Phil completed a successful 3 person English Channel Relay in July 2010 collecting a CS&PF Award, and then a 6 person team crossing in August 2011. Another Dorking Master swam a successful 6 person team relay in 2013 and another in a 2 person team in 2015.

Phil will be happy to advise and mentor any aspiring Channel Swimmers! Just ask!

Four Dorking Masters undertook the brilliant 4 mile swim around Brownsea Island Swim in July 2010 and two went again in 2011. The Henley Dawn swim is to be recommended, with a 4.00am start! With these and loads of new events on the calendar, some even allow wetsuits (ugh!), there is plenty to enjoy.

A number of our members have enjoyed the organised "SwimTrek" holidays in Croatia, Greek Islands, Malta, Scilly Isles, even The Thames etc., whilst others have made use of Club La Santa training facilities on Lanzarote. A new development enjoyed by Dorking Masters since 2012 is the "Big Blue" Greek swim holiday experience, with an exciting programme for 2016 and at least one Dorking Master already booked.

(As Open Water Sec to the Surrey County ASA, this is an area Phil is committed to see developing in 2015 and beyond)

For the completely daft

Alternating with the World Cold Water Championships, there are the biennial UK Cold Water Championships at the unheated Tooting Bec Lido normally at the end of January (water abt 2 to 4ºC), where well insulated "Coach" brought back 2 Gold and 2 Silvers in 2006. A bronze medal and an ITN interview were the reward for two Dorking swimmers in the 1ºC waters of 2013. A couple of us did support the winning Surrey team in a match at Tooting Bec Lido in March 2010, with the water at a respectable 9º - and again, much the same in 2011!

And if you fancy the completely absurd, two from DSC each attempted to swim 1 mile on the hour, every hour for 24 consecutive hours at 2Swim4Life in a 50m pool at High Wycombe (October 2008) - all for a good cause! The same organisation held this growing event at the end of April 2011 in the open air at Guildford Lido, to raise funds for Help for Heroes - just one of the two Dorking swimmers achieved all 24 miles! This was repeated again in 2013 – and in 2015, two from Dorking achieved the full 24hrs solo and another four completed an excellent 24hr relay!

For those who need multi-discipline

We are quite incestuous with Dorking & Mole Valley AC, where Phil used to coach and compete with the endurance athletes and triathletes, having regenerated the Senior/Vets section and founded the Triathlon group in the '80s and '90s. There are quite a few with membership of both clubs and benefit from cross training and are regularly involved in multi discipline events, triathlon, aquathlons, etc., including the delightful, informal summer Aquathlons at Guildford Lido. A couple of our triathletes have regularly competed Internationally, and two more were selected for the GB Tri team for The Worlds in Brisbane in 2009. A DSC couple then resident in Oz also competed, "himself" in the GB team and "er indoors" in the Australian team! She was again selected for the Oz team in Hungary 2010, when living briefly in the UK again. Another member was selected and travelled to Beijing for the 2011 Worlds. We can boast quite a few Ironman triathletes over the years too with four more from Dorking conquering the Florida Ironman in 2011 and numerous subsequent European events etc!

Something for the weekend

The Saturday session mentioned is not strictly a Club session, though many from the Club use it as an extra session. Phil started it over 28 years ago for triathletes at DMVAC, but it has long since broadened to include the full range of Masters swimmers. The whole 6 lane pool is hired at Dorking and £3 ( to be reviewed) collected poolside on a pay as you go basis just to cover the hire charge.
That's 6.45 to 8.00am - with optional coffee or even Full English afterwards!

For Masters in waiting

Swim 4 Fitness - for those not yet ready for the Club Masters, Phil will also be found instructing this group of adult swimmers on behalf of pool operators "Places for People" (PFP Leisure) between 8.00 and 9.00pm on Wednesdays and on Tuesday mornings 7.00 - 8.00am at Dorking Sports Centre. A stroke tutorial session for adult "improvers", 52 weeks per year, no course fees - just "pay as you go" at Reception for a swim. There has been a discount if you pay a block fee in advance - more info at Reception.

A social life

Dorking Masters are known for enjoying a curry or Italian after a Meet and a Festive Nosh at Christmas - and we hope to expand our social repertoire in the future. As a new venture, an afternoon Swim and Tea party, including a surprise visit from Santa, for the "Next Generation" was held in December 2009 and almost each year since then for the growing number of young children/grandchildren produced by our very own Masters - and, with some more "happy events" , the 2013/2014 party had attendance of 26!! Maybe a summer picnic for this age group later in the year?


We also have our own distinctive Dorking Masters Swimhats for training and competition, Polo and Hooded Sweat shirts - and we can even print your name on the Club swimhat!

Want to help?

We will operate even better with some more hands to the pump, so if you fancy getting involved regularly or on a "by event at a time" basis, please don't be shy, have a word with Phil. A Team Manager to motivate swimmers for a competition programme would be particularly beneficial. Organising kit and producing press announcements are also areas needing 'new blood'!

Get in touch, drop in, the water's fine and the welcome warm!

Any immediate queries, please call me at 01306 885371, 07803 966959 or catch me by email pmsears@btclick.com

Hope to see you soon,

Phil Sears
ASA Level III Club Coach (Swimming), Masters Coach Dorking SC ukAthletics Performance Coach (Endurance, Marathon and Strength Conditioning)

March 2016 and tweaked.

Contact Phil also if you have 12-18yr teenagers who wish to maintain swim fitness and/or improve technique, but cannot commit to the DSC Age Group regime, and enquire about the weekly 1hr structured DSC TeenSwim session in three lanes alongside the Swim4Fitness session on Wednesdays 8.00-9.00pm