Thank Your Support System

Photo Courtesy: Taylor Brien

By Alec Scott, Swimming World College Intern.

I have been fortunate enough to swim for some great coaches with years of experience in the sport. But even with all of their technical knowledge acquired over a long and successful career, the trait I valued most in all of them was that they believed in me. That faith and encouragement helped me believe in myself and everything that I accomplished in the sport was a result of my support system instilling that belief in me.

The sport of swimming is growing and advancing faster than ever before. A great deal of this development is owed to swimmers putting the sport on the map with amazing performances at the Olympic level. A more overlooked but just as influential cause is the support these athletes received. High achieving swimmers would not be there without the support of their family, coaches, and teammates.

We had a great reminder of the amazing job club coaches across the country are doing with the astounding swims at the East and West Junior Nationals just two weeks ago. These coaches are putting in the time and developing the next generation of great swimmers.


Photo Courtesy: USA Swimming

The sacrifices club coaches make on a daily basis are huge factor in the success of our sport and they go largely unnoticed. They spend hours upon hours away from their own family to invest time in developing young people. With every great swimmer there is always a coach, parent, friend or teammate who was the first person to believe in them and encourage them to take advantage of their talents.

We all had that one coach who told us that swimming was something that could take us places. Look at an Olympic gold medalist. Look at everyone in their life who invested time and effort in that helped them reach the top of the world. No one makes it to the pinnacle of our sport on their own. No matter what level you made it to in swimming, someone made you believe you had what it takes and helped you push yourself to get there.

So I implore you; especially during this holiday season, thank your family, thank your teammates, thank your coaches, and anyone else who supports you for everything they do. Take the time to reflect and appreciate that our success is far more dependent on others’ generosity of spirit than we are sometimes able to see. Remember this and pay it forward, take time to support your family, teammates and coaches and let them know you believe in them. Think about the way their support makes you feel and remember that your support can have the same positive impact on them.

All commentaries are the opinion of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Swimming World Magazine nor its staff.

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6 years ago

Thank you all

Paulene Simpson
6 years ago

And as one of those Swim Parents, I am thankful for my support system that allows me the opportunity to take my son to all his meets! Whether they be local, 2 hrs, 5hrs p, 8+hrs away, I have the best employer that allows be to work around these meets. Plus, my patents are highly supportive of their grandson too!!!