There are two significant competitions a year in New Zealand, which are run according to FINA Rules:
- North Island Championships and North Island School Championships - generally held during the middle school holidays around June/July, and
- NZ National Championships and NZ School Championships - generally held in the September/October school holidays.
Swimmers who achieve well in these competitions can go on to represent their club overseas, or to represent New Zealand at Oceanias, Junior World Championships, World Championships or the Olympic Games. At this point in time, synchronised swimming will not be featured at the next Commonwealth Games, but it may return at some stage.
School competitions feature solos, duets/trios and team, and swimmers can represent Intermediate or Secondary Schools. The competition is for routines only.
North Island & NZ National Competitions
At the North Island Championships and NZ National Championships, swimmers are required to compete in two categories:
Figures - a Synchro figure is the basic building block of synchronised swimming, and is a combination of body positions and transitions performed in a certain order and in a controlled manner, as prescribed by FINA. These are taught as swimmers progress through the Star levels. Swimmers complete four different figures in this part of the competition, wearing black togs, white caps and goggles. Figures scores are then carried over to be combined with routine scores to give a final result for each routine. They make up 50% of the final result.
Routines - these are performed either as a Solo, Duet/Trio or Team. Routines are performed to music and are judged on "Technical Merit", ie execution, difficulty and synchronisation, and "Artistic Impression", ie choreography, musical interpretation and presentation. Swimmers wear specially designed beautiful togs and headpieces for these routines.
The club undertakes fundraising and applies for grants to assist with competition costs but parents must be prepared to meet all costs associated with competitions themselves.