Meet Head Coach Simon

Tell us a bit about yourself

I grew up in a small town in Devon, England, situated in an 'Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty' along a stretch of what's known as the Jurassic Coast, on the south coast of England.

I've always been involved in swimming, as a competitive swimmer from an early age at Chard and District Swim Club in southwest England; a Swim Teacher under the ASA and Assistant Manager of a local pool in Devon; and at the West Scarborough Neighbourhood Community Centre, where I made it my goal to build a sustainable and successful aquatics program when I first moved to Canada in 2004.

In 2009 I started the SEAL Swim Club, in response to a call for community support to keep the SATEC pool from permanent closure.

What’s your most proud achievement in swimming?

I had a number of accolades as a young competitive swimmer, with Devon County and National times in the UK. I've also participated in a number of triathlons and open water events over the years. I think I'm more proud of what I've achieved on the deck though. I've taught and coached countless swimmers over the years and many have have gone on to achieve their own great successes.

It can be difficult to measure achievements of swimmers in the pool, because circumstances and abilities vary so dramatically. Still, there's something very rewarding when a swimmer that you've been working with masters a particular skill, or reaches a particular time or goal that they've set for themselves.

My most proud achievement in swimming would be my ability to come to the pool each week and work with swimmers, young and old, to help them to set and reach their own goals.

Share your most memorable/unusual time at a swim meet

For better or worse, possibly my most memorable experience at a meet (or gala, as they are known in the UK), was at a Counties meet, performing the 200 Breaststroke in the finals after my goggles flipping and filling with water from the dive. I finished the race, but with a DQ for knocking into the lane ropes.

What’s your favourite swim set or session?

My favourite sessions are classic distance sets (boring, I know), where I can just keep my head down and swim. Blocks of 500s is the way forward!

And finally, what’s your number 1 swim tip?

This really depends on who I'm coaching. I think my most commonly used swim tip would be to "relax" and "swim smooth".

Anything else you'd like to say?

Of course... I'll see you at the pool!


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