Diving into a new sport
Two years ago, I received the devastating news that I needed surgery on my elbow, ending my gymnastics career of 10 years. My surgery left me questioning my future with sports and seeking the sense of purpose and community that gymnastics gave me, until I found swimming. Supported by loved ones, I outswam my self-doubt, diving into a world of opportunity.
Due to my late arrival to the sport of swimming, I decided to keep a light-hearted attitude while still training hard. This mindset allowed me to improve quickly, meet friends, and have fun along the way without extra pressure. After warmly welcoming me to the team, my teammates continued to push me through each practice and cheer me on at every meet. Motivated by my team and coaches' constant encouragement, I competed in State and reached the times for Sectionals cuts, qualifying me to join National, the top training group at Dad’s Club Aquatics.
In National, I get opportunities to improve my times and learn from new swimming experiences, racing not only other high schoolers but also Olympic and collegiate-level athletes. Every day, I see my teammates reaching new goals, committing to top universities, and even making Olympic Trials cuts. The Dad’s Club community has shaped me as a swimmer and a person, as they have inspired me to chase new dreams that I would have never imagined before.
The theme of swimming and friendship carried over into school, as I swam on the Varsity swim team at Awty, helping me branch out socially and form friendships with kids of all grades in high school. Training together every morning and sharing team trips, our team bonded over victorious meets, difficult practice sets, and every moment in between, supporting one another both in the pool and on dry land. Fueled by my teammates’ camaraderie, I set new school records in individual events and relays. To top off a great first year of high school swimming, I was named MVP and nominated for the VYPE award. My journey in swimming over this past year excites me for the improvement and experiences in the years to come!
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