About (K-W Water Polo)


About KW Water Polo

This page is intended to introduce prospective new members to the sport of Water Polo and Waterloo Region's finest Water Polo Club. Explore, and if you have any questions, reach out to us by sending an email to [email protected].

You may want to start by watching this promotional video for our club...
KW Water Polo Kraken Promotional Video
Click here to view the video

What is Water Polo - the basics

Water polo is physical and demanding but if you love the water, it is a whole lot of fun! Played in the deep end of a pool, water polo is a bit like basketball, but you score on a soccer style goal which is defended by a keeper, rather than shooting on a basket.

Ranked by Bleacher Report as the number one toughest sport in the entire world, it is a game of endurance, strategy, strength and skill. With the added pressure of a 30 second shot clock, players must use picks and passes to progress the the ball up the field and attempt to score while the opposing team checks and blocks them. Like hockey, penalties or kick outs are issued and players are given power plays to then attempt to score on a man-up opportunity. 

Teams are made up of 6 field players and a goalie, and a game consists of four, 8 minute quarters with teams switching ends at half time.

Let Nick Stevens of SB Nation get you up to speed on the must-know facts of water polo in this fun, two minute video.  YouTube.gif

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Reasons why our club might be right for your athlete

If you are here, you probably know an athlete who loves the water and is a strong swimmer. If they also enjoy physical, team oriented competition, water polo is probably a perfect sport for them. If they are in synchro, or on a swim team, and looking for something a little bit more... we'd be happy to give them a chance to try us out.

While we are a competitive club, and expect our team members to push themselves to excel, we have a positive and encouraging approach to coaching our athletes. You can read more about this in our Mission and Vision statements.

During away competitions, and even at home, there are numerous opportunities for the athletes to have fun and socialize with their team mates, building friendships that last for many years. Club potlucks are held periodically to bring everyone together.

Opportunities for travel vary with age but we typically have teams travel to Guelph, London, Hamilton, Etobicoke, Scarborough, Markham, Ottawa, Gatineau, Montreal and sometimes Quebec City for competitions. Occasionally we have traveled as far afield as Calgary, Kalamazoo, Pittsburgh, Rochester, Mexico, Hawaii and Denmark. Players selected to the Provincial teams have trained in or traveled to Barcelona, L.A, Malibu, Santa Barbara, San Bernadino, Stockton, and San Francisco. Longer trips depend on the potential of the athlete or team, and the interest of the parents and availability of coaches.

Water Polo in Canada is still building its base, so dedicated athletes have a much higher probability of qualifying for Provincial, National and Olympic teams than most other sports. Almost all of our athletes do well on their High School swim teams and many become phenomenal lifeguards. Some alumni even end up playing on University teams in Canada and the US, sometimes qualifying for scholarships in the process.

Our athletes are regularly exposed to people who have coached, ref'ed or played Nationally and Internationally.

Check out Tori Wilson, one of our alumni who is returning as a coach. She played NCAA College Water Polo in the US and was nominated for a NCAA Woman of the Year Award in July 2020.

As with any sport, the earlier an athlete starts, the more they are likely to develop an intuitive understanding of the rules and strategy of the game. You may want to review our Programs and Age Divisions to get an understanding of the program available to your athlete.

While we have had success with children who join as old as 15 or 16 years of age, they usually have a background that includes another demanding water sport, as well as some other competitive team sport.

Reach out to us at [email protected] and we can guide you, and provide an opportunity to try it out.

You might also want to check out the highlight reels of some of our athletes in action, brought to you by 519 Sports Online .

There are highlights for 12U, 14U Boys, 14U Girls and 16U Girls.

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Reasons why our club might be right for the parent

Let's face it. You want to know what's in this for you too, right?   Smiley

We believe we are one of the least expensive competitive sports programs available. Check out our current fees here and compare for yourself.

It is hot in our stands! If you love the cold, being a spectator of this sport is not for you!

We have an amazing and mutually supportive group of parents. People make connections, and pitch in to help each other out.The parent friendships can last well beyond the water polo experience.

Social opportunities are oriented towards the parents as much as the players.

If you are someone who likes to use their talents on a volunteer basis, we have got lots of opportunities for you!   Smiley

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Why we might not be right for you and your athlete

While we think this is a fantastic sport and a fantastic club, we are not a good fit for everyone.

We are a competitive club. Think Rep, All Star, Select or Competitive in any other team sport that you know. Members need to be prepared to travel to weekend competitions. Sometimes these are an easy drive but they can be as far away as Quebec City and require multiple nights of accommodation in the host city.

We provide a positive environment and tons of encouragement but we do not baby athletes that do not have a strong work ethic. Athletes must be willing to step up and push themselves to develop their strength, their stamina, and their skill. If the athlete lacks a degree of self-motivation and drive, they may not develop as quickly as others.

Playing Time: If the coach does not feel your player is likely to see much time in the water at a particular tournament, they will try to advise you of this in advance so that you can make a decision whether to attend or not. While our coaches ensure that all athletes get in the water at competitions they do attend, playing time can strongly depend on the work ethic of the athlete in practice, and the strength, stamina and skill they have developed.  The strength of the competitor and the flow of the game can quickly become a factor in deciding who is in the water when a coach is trying to ensure a team's playoff birth. Do not expect equal playing time.

With the exception of the Fun and Fit program, we do not provide a House League equivalent for Water Polo. 

If this leaves you sitting on the fence, come out to our try it out sessions and talk to other parents, or send us an email at [email protected].

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Can the athlete try it out first

Absolutely! Reach out to us at [email protected] and we will work with you to set up a try it out session for your athlete.

Knowing that this is a new sport for many, we do our best to provide opportunities to "try before you buy" and we do not limit this to the start of the season. We do require that a new athlete be approved by our coaches, but we typically try to make even late season registrations work for both a new member and the club.

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What does it cost

We believe we are one of the least expensive competitive sports programs available. Check out our current fees here and compare for yourself.

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Water Polo inspiration

While our club is officially referred to as KW Water Polo, we make it a little more fun by referring to ourselves as The Kraken.

The Kraken is a legendary sea monster, a leviathan sent to prey on unwary ships and mariners. Closely resembling a giant squid, it was said to be the length of 10 ships. This terrible beast would be the subject of many legends and lore that circulated for centuries on the Seven SeasFew had seen the Kraken and lived to tell the tale. What better mascot to personify our club's fierce and competitive spirit?

If you are still not sure you know what a Kraken is, read this quote from Pirates of the Caribbean - At World's End:

"Well, if you believe such things, there's a beast does the bidding of Davy Jones. A fearsome creature with giant tentacles that'll suction your face clean off, and drag an entire ship down to the crushing darkness. The Kraken. Imagine, the last thing you know on God's green earth is the roar of the Kraken. - Joshamee Gibbs to Will Turner