Joy and community connection in the pool at ‘the y’ - The Community Leader and Real Estate New and Views

Photo: Supplied.

It all started about a year ago when a few children wanted to swim 25 metres down the pool for fun. Mums and dads fully supported this goal because it is cost-effective, a great way to keep them moving, and an hour away from technology.

In the beginning, we just did our best to engage the students in enjoying following the black line for an hour once or twice a week, and then things began to happen! More children joined us, and their swimming started to improve. Twenty-five metres became too easy, so we continued extending their skill sets, making it fun.

I have always believed that swimming is more than just a sport – it is a community that fosters friendship, teamwork, and discipline. Whether you are a beginner or a seasoned swimmer, the benefits of being part of a swimming team go beyond the physical aspects of the sport.

That said, I introduced dry-land training on Mondays before their swim set, and the swimmers loved it!
As this was only a 10-15-minute session, I wanted to add a different spin to our drills, so I created Wacky Wednesdays. This was the day our participation numbers grew the most. It’s also the day swimmers work in teams, race, laugh, and celebrate each other. The pool is very noisy on Wednesdays!

As we continued to grow and became friends, we discovered some amazing little children who had obstacles to improving their swimming, but they continued to get in the water and be a part of this team. We have a little 11-year-old girl, Charlotte, who has been diagnosed with arthritis in her joints. Even when she is in pain, she never misses a session – imagine swimming around one to two kilometres with arthritis! She truly is a champion.

We have two amazing ladies, Meagan and Hayley, living with disabilities, who also join us. They have become such valuable members of our team. Meagan and Hayley have physical and developmental hurdles to overcome, but they show up every week and swim to the best of their abilities.

We are so proud of our swimming squad and the strong sense of camaraderie and friendship that has developed among team members. Spending hours training together, cheering each other on during races, and celebrating victories creates a bond that goes beyond the pool. The shared experiences and challenges of swimming create lasting friendships that can extend far beyond the pool deck.

Swimming is not just a sport here at ‘The Y’ – it is a way of life that helps build character and shapes people into confident, resilient, and successful individuals, regardless of their obstacles.

A year has passed, and our amazing little team of swimmers now consists of five age champions, three swimmers competing at State titles, and multi-class swimmers thriving in this environment.

I could not be prouder of these amazing athletes, and I am confident we will see them standing on podiums very soon!


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