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St. John-Holy Angels Athletics

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Holy Angels Cross Country (HAXC)

Welcome to Holy Angels Cross Country (HAXC)!  Please review the information contained in this
document prior to the first practice.  A mandatory Parents Meeting will be held during the first week of
practice to review this information, and to answer any questions you may have regarding HAXC.
Participation

 What is Cross Country?  Cross country is a sport in which teams and individuals run a race on
open-air courses over natural terrain. The course, typically 1 mile (for JV) or 2 miles (for Varsity), may
include surfaces of grass, and earth, pass through woodlands and open country, and include hills, flat
ground and sometimes gravel road.  It is both an individual and a team sport; runners are judged on
individual times and teams by a points-scoring method.

 Who can participate in HAXC?  Holy Angels Cross Country team is open to boys and girls in
Grades 3-8.

 Is there a HAXC Fun Runners program for younger children?  In past years we have had children
in grades kindergarten through second grade participate in designated practices with HAXC and CYM
cross country meets that facilitate Fun Runner races. Please reach out to inquire if this program is
available this season.

 What if my child is nervous about running distance?  Running longer distances can be
intimidating for kids who have never done this before and is rather common.  We (the coaches)
understand this, and work with the kids to gradually build them up to the race distances.  Through
active encouragement, we motivate kids to work up to their potential, and we make sure that HAXC is
a fun, low-stress program.  You and your kids will be amazed at how they progress over the 2.5
months of the season!!

 A Note About HAXC Behavior Polices:  In order to maintain a safe and productive atmosphere at
our practices, we require that all HAXC participants adhere to some simple behavioral rules.  These
rules prohibit some activities that may otherwise seem normal to kids and parents, such as climbing
on trees or rocks, throwing rocks/pine cones, waving sticks, etc.  This is necessary to maintain order
and focus, as well as to ensure the safety of all participants.  Please understand that during practices
and meets, HAXC coaches are responsible for the safety of the kids (per CYM regulations).  In
general, these rules are enforced starting at the beginning of every practice/meet, until the event is
deemed complete, at which point all kids are free to play as they wish or as their parents determine. 
Practice

 Where are practices held?  Practices are held at Carousel Park - Skyline Drive parking lot. 
Occasionally we may practice at a more distant venue specific to an upcoming meet. If this is the
case ample notice will be communicated.

 When does practice start?   Practice for Grades 3-8 begin in late August.  We generally practice on
T/TH from 5:30-7:00 early in the season.  Later in the season, when sundown comes earlier these
times will adjust.

 What time should my child arrive for practice?  Athletes should arrive at practice no later than ten
minutes prior to the scheduled start of practice. The warm ups and stretches that we do at the
beginning of practice are essential to a safe and productive workout. Waiting for late arrivals is unfair
to the group, and will deprive the late-arriving athlete out of a proper warm-up which may result in
injury.  Often we will meet at a parking lot, and jog to another location to begin practice.  If you arrive
late, you may not be able to locate the rest of the team, so please be on time (or early). All parents
are welcome and encouraged to stay for practice and observe, or run along with the kids.  We are
always looking for parents who are willing to run with us!
o Per CYM regulations, coaches are required to stay onsite until all children are picked up, so
please be courteous to your coaching staff and pick up athletes promptly at the end of
practice!!!

 Does HAXC practice in bad weather?  We practice in the heat and cold, but usually not in the rain
and definitely not if there is any lightning in the area.  If the weather is looking bad, an email
notification will go out at least 2 hours prior to the start of practice informing everyone if practice has
been cancelled.

 What should my child wear/bring to practice?  Please make sure your child is dressed
appropriately for the weather conditions.  All children are required to remain fully clothed during
practice (i.e. boys should not remove their shirts).  Your child should also bring water for
themselves.  HAXC does not allow the use of personal electronics during practices or meets.

 What type of shoes should my child wear to practices/meets?  Each athlete will require a pair of
proper running shoes. Basketball shoes, “cross trainers” or other specialty shoes are not appropriate
for the types of stresses that the athlete’s feet will be under during training, and are discouraged. 

 How do I let you know if my child must miss practice or a meet?  HAXC employs a simple online
website (teamsnap.com) to “RSVP” for all meets.  We ask that you to verify your child’s attendance at
upcoming meets.  More information regarding registering for TeamSnap will be provided during the
first weeks of practice.
 
MEETS
 Where are meets typically held?  Meets are held on the weekends at various county or state parks.
These include Bellevue State Park, Brandywine Creek State Park, Canby Park, and Carousel Park.
Note:  Many of our practice and meet locations are in Delaware State Parks which require a $3.00
entry fee.  Alternatively, you can purchase an annual park pass for $35 (in-state) which is well worth
it!  If the entry fee poses an issue, please let a coach know as alternate arrangements can be made.

 How long do the meets last?  Cross country meets typically lasts around 2.5 hours.

 Does my child need to be at the meet for the entire time?  For each meet, we will publish a
scheduled arrival time, usually about one hour before the first race.  All participants are required to
arrive and check in with the coaches by the published arrival time.  This is necessary so that the
coaches can verify our submitted entries into the various events.  We strongly encourage all athletes
to stay for the entire meet and cheer for their teammates, even if they have completed their race. 
Think about it…would you leave a baseball or soccer game early if your child was done
participating??

 How many events will my child participate in during a meet?  Each runner participates in one
race during each meet.  The JV (Grades 3-6) races are usually ~1 mile and the Varsity (Grades 6-8)
are usually ~2 miles in length.

 What are the uniform requirements for HAXC?  A full uniform consisting of a jersey and matching
shorts will be provided to every HAXC athlete.  Every athlete is required to compete in full uniform,
without exceptions.  This includes wearing both the jersey and matching shorts.  In addition, jerseys
should be worn tucked into the shorts, not untucked or cinched around the abdomen.  During colder
weather, long-sleeves or compression shirts/tights may be worn under the uniform.  These should be
chosen to match our team colors if possible (blue/white/black/gold).

 Will my child win a medal or award at every meet?  Whereas HAXC accommodates a wide range
of athlete skill levels, the CYM is a very competitive league with very accomplished athletes.  As
such, not every child will win a medal at every meet. 

 Does HAXC need any volunteer help?  YES!!!  We are always looking for parents and/or older
siblings who are willing to run with us at practice and help organize the team at practices and meets. 
If you have an interest in helping, please contact [email protected] You do not need to have
any prior experience of knowledge of running to help out. All parents are required to volunteer at the
Holy Angels/St. Anne's Meet, our co-hosted meet.  The success of our meet depends on having a
sufficient number of volunteers, so your cooperation is greatly appreciated.

Contact Us

St. John-Holy Angels Athletics (SJ-HAA)

82 Possum Park Road 
Newark, Delaware 19711

Phone: 302-731-2439
Email: [email protected]

St. John-Holy Angels Athletics (SJ-HAA)

82 Possum Park Road 
Newark, Delaware 19711

Phone: 302-731-2439
Email: [email protected]
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