About Orca Swim Team

The Orca Swim Team is an active masters swim team and social club whose mission is to promote the sport of swimming and to educate the public about the value of sports in community-building.

Orcas promotes competitive and fitness swimming for lesbians, gays and their friends in a team-oriented, coached setting. If you are looking to make friends, get in a great workout, or compete against great swimmers from throughout the region, the nation or the world, or all of the above, Orcas is the team for you! All ages and ability levels welcome!

With close to 150 swimmers, Orcas ranks as one of the largest USMS teams in the Pacific Northwest, and is the largest (primarily, but not exclusively) gay and lesbian teams in the Pacific Northwest. Our membership includes first time swimmers who have never competed in swim meets or swam on a team to experienced competitive swimmers.  Orcas is a member of both United States Masters Swimming (USMS) and the International Gay and Lesbian Aquatics (IGLA).


Social: The Orcas is made up of a broad spectrum of people living in the greater Puget Sound area. Orca’s membership is trnasforming to reflect the diversity of the community we live in.  While we have different backgrounds and sexual orientations, we share a love of swimming and community inovlement. Some of our social activities include: camaraderie in and around the pool, going out for meals after practice, attending team parties and socials, and participating in community outreach events (such as Pride) and team fund-raisers. Come on out, and bring a friend, you’ll likely meet many more!

Fitness: With a terrific set of coaches, Orca practices promise to challenge your physical prowess and sometimes your mathematical skills (love ya, Kat!). The team generally works out for 1.25 hours five times per week (see practice schedule). You can swim as many or as few practices as you would like and swim in a lane that best matches your speed and ability. Each practice will focus on improving stroke technique and building strength, endurance, and aerobic conditioning.

Competition: While we enjoy fitness and socializing, Orcas also takes competition seriously! We have coached practices five times per week to provide our swimmers with the ability to optimize their skill, strength, endurance, and speed.

Generally, the team trains for about 4 to 5 “focus” swim meets each year. Some swimmers swim in more meets, and others less or not at all. The choice is yours! However, we do encourage all swimmers to swim in at least one meet, because they are fun, provide team-building experiences, travel opportunities, and help you realize the payoff for all the training you’ve done!