Dec
31
This entry is part 6 of 7 in the series Columns

Swimming in the years B.J. (before Jaked) supposedly wasn’t a sport of high interest. There seemed to be a lonely warrior, Michael Phelps, on a quest to bring swimming to the main stream and into the living rooms of millions of people. The road to his 8 gold medals at the 2008 Olympics certainly took swimming out of the 4 year shadow the sport was known for. But who would have thought that this would be just the start of swimming media mania? The so called “shiny suits” made their way into swimming and with them the world record line on television looked like a technical error by the broadcaster with oftentimes the full field ahead of it.

Swimming was nothing like we knew it B.J. anymore. Legends were taken down and the rate at which world records were broken was higher than any FINA staff member possibly could hold up with. Most WR probably never officially were one as the approval process took longer than another swimmer taking down the new standard once more. I wonder if they even cared to hand out the official certificate you’ll get for a WR. FINA’s administrative expenses must have tripled at least during the shiny suit era.

And of course selling suits that regularly ripped after a single use had to be more than just a great business to be in. Let’s face the truth, most of us were not sponsored by one of the suit manufacturers and the pressure to under perform or get beaten up at a meet wasn’t an option and the dollars bills ended up wrapped around our bodies in form of one of those shiny suits.

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    Christop Gertsch, former swimmer himself and now writer for different Swiss newspapers, wrote a great article on Dominik Meichtry called “Der Schwimmer und sein Meisterwerk“. This really sums up perfectly the life of a swimmer.

Dec
9

Mob Log Ber Kp 104It’s been a while since I last posted something and I’m not positive that my time with the Swiss Army is a great excuse. I did have a few ideas for new content during the last weeks and started working on several of them. But I have to admit that life in the army is different and writing wasn’t always a top priority. So for now an update on what I’ve been up to this summer before reporting to the Swiss Army and some things that happened during that time.

I’ve been assigned to a troop called “Mob Log Ber Kp 104-1” or simply the Mammoths. Compared to my first experience with the Swiss Army I did have a better time but I’m glad it’s over now. We still had to go through some training but it was more specific to the mission we had to accomplish during those weeks.

There’s really not much more I can share with you other than the news that put a smile on my face during the time with the Swiss Army…so keep reading for some swimming related news.

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Dec
8

Swim Essentials

My friend Richard Hall produced a swim DVD for ASCA (American Swimming Coaches Association) and USA Swimming called “Swim Essentials: Teaching the Fundamentals to Age Group Swimmers . The DVD demonstrates fundamental progressions and basic teaching techniques for free, back, breast, fly, and starts and turns.

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    Jack Boyd, who was down in the Keys for a Race Club swim camp this past summer, began his High School swimming career with a record in the 500 yard free and a win in the 200 yard free to help Canisius to a win in their season opener. You can read the full article in the sports section on BuffaloNews.com

Nov
30

Dorothy Hong, one of the athletes I was coaching this year in the Florida Keys with the Race Club is on the cover of the October/November issue of Swim Philippines. Check out the article on Dorothy starting on page 12.

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Sep
20

In my last post titled “Champions ingredients” I listed five common factors that I think make a champion not just in swimming, but in any sport. As coaching starts to become my primary responsibility at the pool, I realize there are five important things to keep in mind doing this job. I still consider myself a total rookie and this post is directed more toward swim coaches who are just beginning their coaching career. However, these five points can apply no matter where you are in your coaching career.

Although I wrote this post with the goal of sharing some of my experiences and help swim coaches, I realize that this information can also help athletes as well. After all, at the end of their careers, many swimmers end up coaching themselves to a large extent. So no matter if you’re just starting out in your coaching career or have been on deck for a long time or you are an athlete learning how to coach yourself, I hope you find something useful.

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Sep
17

I will attend the grand opening of the new indoor swimming pool in Martigny along with some swimmers from Vevey Natation. They’re going to do some exhibition swims and I will do a finswimming presentation.

Inauguration Piscine Martigny

Vue intérieure du nouveau bassin encore en chantier.

Martigny s’apprête à inaugurer pour sa nouvelle piscine couverte et je ferai une démonstration de nage avec palmes avec quelques nageurs du Vevey Natation qui à leur tour vont faire une démonstration de natation.