In NorCal we have what we call Early Start leagues. That means the 2007 Senior and Mixed seasons started in September, and as of now are almost through local league play. Needless to say, these teams started before 2007 ratings were out. To adjust for that NorCal uses Early Start Ratings (ESRs), which come out in June. These ratings take into account adjustments for matches played in 2006, but does not include the adjustments from 2006 Nationals, which happened after the Early Start leagues began. For example, last year, our 2006 National Champion Senior 3.0 ladies were from Mission Hills. These ladies all started their 2006 season in September 2005 as either tennislink or NorCal ESR 3.0. But, by Dec 2005, when calculating in National benchmarks, most of these ladies were given 2006 NTRP ratings of 3.5. Because they had played most of the season when the 2006 ratings came out they were allowed to continue on play 3.0 for the senior team, but had to play adult season as 3.5. By the time Nationals roled around in October of 2006 five of the six ladies in the senior W3.0 lineup had been rated 3.5 for almost a year. This year NorCal is instituting an "Up and Out" rule for the senior league. They noted that these ladies, and many others in all levels of our senior league didn't cheat. But NorCal's policy of the Early Start leagues made it unfair at the National level. So this year, if you got bumped in the year end ratings you could continue to play the local league season at your old level, but could only compete in local playoffs, districts, or sectionals at your new rating. Originally they also were going to use this rule in Mixed leagues, but because so many who played adult league got bumped up, and the outcry was so fierce, they dropped that for this year. (So yes, a 3.5 who got bumped to 4.0 for 2007 could play for NorCal at Nationals in 2007 as a 3.5 in Mixed.) The seniors are still trying to get the new rule dropped, but have yet to be successful. So my question is, how do other areas get around this? Do you play all National level leagues outside of fall? And if so what do your calendars look like? Do you have Early Start leagues? And if so how do you deal with the year end rating discrepancies?