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Poolside chat: Calling all parents of competitive swimmers!

(332 Posts)
Marypoppins19 Fri 06-Apr-18 08:13:31

I thought it might be helpful to share our highs/lows/questions/thoughts in one place. Who’s joining me!?

WidowTwonky Mon 09-Apr-18 19:23:55

Hello. I’ll join you.
My DS is 9 so has only been doing competitive galas for 6 months or so. He has 1 strong stroke but his coach prefers them to be all rounders rather than focusing on one/two particular strokes. So he has to enter a variety of events which doesn’t go down too well with him

Marypoppins19 Tue 10-Apr-18 10:37:04

Hi! Great to have a fellow swim mum on board. I have two kids, one just competed at counties but not very passionate! Another who is only 8 and just started but super keen!
Interesting about your sons preferred strokes, I can’t believe how much my older DS strokes have changed - and his body!

Madcats Fri 13-Apr-18 17:50:58

OOh, can I jump on the bench? Having spent 2 days at an open meet last weekend I am bringing a cushion!

DD(10) (also dabbles with music and dance and sport so I pop up all over the place) started squad swimming when she turned 9. She finds it relaxing/mindful, apparently.

Widow it is a good idea to maintain proficiency in all strokes if possible at such a young age. It is amazing what a difference a bit of strength and maturity make to their swim strokes as they get older.

Inter-club gala this weekend, so I just have to get DD up to the coach.

Haberpop Fri 13-Apr-18 17:55:57

I had years and years as a poolside mum! I still go from time to time and my swimmer is now a 28 year old adult, I cannot imagine a time when she won't swim, she is marrying a swimmer later this year (although he now coaches), if they have babies one day they will be brought up on a poolside grin

Wh0Kn0wsWhereTheT1meG0es Fri 13-Apr-18 18:00:58

Me too. DD loves swimming but due to other extra-curriculars can only train twice a week which is starting to hold her back, so far she has only entered club galas as the others always seem to clash with something else. I also think she would give up rather than do early mornings, it's a dilemma.

screamuntilthewarisover Sat 14-Apr-18 01:07:42

Oh I want to join.

My daughter swims for a small local club. She is only 7 but loves to swim and doing galas.

Still learning about the mysterious world of swim club.

estherfrewen Sat 14-Apr-18 09:31:56

Hi everyone - my ds is 14 and joined club age 6 so lots of poolside sitting and 4.30 am alarms! Gala this weekend - last one before regionals.

turkeyboots Sat 14-Apr-18 09:38:58

Hi All. Another swim mum here. DD is 11 and making huge improvements in her race times, which kind of makes the 5am starts bareable.
It's huge family commitment though, DD and I were at an open meet last weekend at Millfield, and have a club gala on Sunday. Plus all the training. She loves it, but I am finding it hard going.

Marv1nGay3 Sat 14-Apr-18 09:48:52

My DD is Y7 and training with the county squad at her club. 4/ 5 times a week plus land training. I am
starting to worry it’s all
a bit much for her and she is getting very tired.. she has to do swimming at school too. She gets quite a few ear infections/ colds. We will
see how it pans out in the next few months!

Madcats Sat 14-Apr-18 17:11:27

turkey we were at the same gala, but DD was swimming as a 10 year old (though we need to get 12 year old county times this summer - it's a bit of a jump!). Are you doing the County Development Pathway camps too?

Millfield is my favourite pool, but DD is having to train in an 18m pool most of the time so it is a bit of a culture shock doing long course galas there.

We're still in a junior squad to 3x1.5 hours for us and no early mornings (that's when music stuff happens!).

turkeyboots Sat 14-Apr-18 18:44:43

Mad never heard of them! But DDs club is v pushy and don't like their kids doing anything external. Even the Swim England development sessions which her friend was picked for. We are moving away in the summer, so a good excuse to find a less intense club.
DD had just got her county times in freestyle and backstroke at Millfield, a lovely pool! She is training 8hrs a week plus an hour in the gym. I live in terror of her being promoted to next group up as we can only just cope with the current demands of training.

Madcats Sat 14-Apr-18 19:47:49

turkey yes I mean the Swim England pathway. I think Somerset was one of the counties that did a pilot last year.

We are definitely a 'more relaxed' club. I have seen so many children just abandon swimming in early teens I am happy with the more flexible set up.

I suspect DD will go down the 'open water'/biathlon route in due course. She likes getting medals, but isn't wild about all the hanging about that a gala entails.

Out of interest (boredom with making up pots of houmus & veg and healthy wraps), what do people give DC to eat during meets and post-training? In her ideal world DD would just scoff Haribo and pot noodles at a gala with an omlette when she gets home late.

Wafflenose Sat 14-Apr-18 22:06:53

We are in Somerset and DD2 (aged 9) swims for a small, family sort of non-pushy club. There is a much bigger and more competitive club closer to us, but I don't think it's right for her. She competed for U12s in Taunton in the new year (due to size of our club, not her ability) and hated it, but competed as a 9 year old at a friendly in Tiverton last month and loved it! She swims 3-4 hours per week just because she enjoys swimming. We never planned to go down the club route, but we couldn't find a Stage 9 lesson that we could get to, and she wanted to do more hours. I'm happy with the hours she is doing, as she also enjoys art, Brownies (just left with her slightly older friends and waiting to be old enough for Guides), cello, clarinet and recorder.

estherfrewen Sun 15-Apr-18 10:22:28

For poolside snacks during gala ds has breadsticks, sultanas, fruit malt, popcorn, banana. Pasta at lunch. Pre-5am training it is banana and yoghurt and a choc chip brioche. Post am training, porridge. Rest of the time lives on pasta, chicken, omelettes, fish etc. Eats like an absolute horse.

Trains about 12 hours a week, three sessions are 5am, three in the evening. Big commitment now in year 9 and school getting busy. We are at mid size club.

Anyone at a gala this weekend?

WidowTwonky Sun 15-Apr-18 10:39:08

We’re at BOK at Hudds next week. Nothing this weekend

turkeyboots Sun 15-Apr-18 10:42:27

Am sat watching the huge queue to into spectator area. May just sit out in hall and not bake today!

Food wise DD brings flapjacks and crisps and small bag of harbio to galas for snacks. Pasta salad for lunch. My struggle is getting her to drink enough so bribe her with whatever the cool sports drink of the week is.

Breakfast is another struggle, especially before morning training. She'll have sport protein milkshakes at the moment, so that's better than nothing.

coldlocation Sun 15-Apr-18 10:54:52

3x club swimmers in my family. We are lucky to be with a club that scrapped early am training (they found teenagers just dropped out) and offers 2 levels of competitive pathways and one non competitive one so they can "club" swim for fitness and do fun/local galas without pressure to get County times if they not interested. One of mine just moved to the non competitive route... Typically all his times have improved hugely with pressure off and club are trying gently to entice him back to a competitive pathway but he's not interested. One has only ever been on the non competitive route (he's made of lead and not a natural swimmer) and one is very good and on the competitive route and always being asked to swim but doesn't much like it (until he wins a race then he loves it again!) ... Typical. Hours at different pools to accommodate differing squads... I know what day of the week it is primarily by which pool I am at (club uses 5 pools across the city!).

estherfrewen Sun 15-Apr-18 11:04:04

We have two pathways as well, but lack of pool availability means early mornings whichever path - on non competitive side though doesn’t really matter if you choose to do only pm sessions.

Been to Huddersfield a few times! Good look with BoK next week.

Lot of ds friends can’t eat pre early swim as they feel sick.

Madcats Sun 15-Apr-18 11:43:25

Gala last night (so DD not in bed until gone 10), hockey tournament today (yes, I rather thought the season had finished too).

Good luck to everybody competing today.

DD used to love plain, cold pasta as a toddler...I must try a couple of pasta salads (can't stand them myself so it is bound to be popular)!

superbaghag Sun 15-Apr-18 14:25:03

Another swimming mum checking in. 2 DD’s that swim and we were at the Millfield meet last weekend too! The humidity of sitting poolside is destroying my hair more so then theirs

WidowTwonky Sun 15-Apr-18 15:13:15

Do any of you volunteer at galas?

estherfrewen Sun 15-Apr-18 15:17:13

Yes - makes the time pass quicker!

screamuntilthewarisover Sun 15-Apr-18 22:14:24

So glad we’re not at stupid o’clock Training yet.

Approaching the time when I need to decide if to move my daughter to a bigger more competitive club or stay where we are! I’m told by her current coach that she has potential and her times are good for her age.

Big fish in a little pond or little fish in a big pond?

estherfrewen Mon 16-Apr-18 08:28:48

Hmm tricky one, scream. How old is your daughter? Is it harder to get to big club? Longer travelling? Our nearest ‘city of’ club culls kids every few months if they don’t consistently train and make the grade. Loads of smaller clubs near us turn out British and home nation qualifiers and medallists so unless it is a really little club with v limited opportunities I would stay put. Do the bigger club do a pathway scheme so best of both worlds?

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