Are they really?

The first words Madison uttered when I came to collect her from MMSwiminspirations swim camp, under supervision from Mel Marshall were: “I swear they are trying to kill us with that land training!”

What does that tell you? What should it tell me?

Madison has had land-training regularly. Yoga, Pilates, and exercise. That has been going on since a year.  All soft training and still an injury of the shoulder. Perhaps the soft training is too soft to strengthen the muscles enough.

1 week at Mel Marshall’s swim camp and Madison’s feels totally overstretched.

But, who is winning the medals at top competitions? Those who work with Mel or those who work with Madison’s regular club?

I am just glad that Madison is going to train with the top squad in Hackney Aquatics from September with 2 gym sessions per week. It seems that all the soft options like Yoga and Pilates do not do too much for high performance athletes.

Our local Hackney Aquatics club is the only one we can attend, from where we live and school.

 

Itching for next season

We were ecstatic yesterday to watch Kai Ogden (second from right) win a bronze in the English National Championships in Sheffield. Madison has been training with Kai since she was very small and apart from going to LACPP for a while and Kai changing to Hackney Aquatics earlier, when Madison still remained in Bethnal Green Sharks, they have spent almost their whole swimming careers within sight of each other, or within the same club.

Kai always struck as being Born to Swim, his dedication was always such an encouragement to us all.

I am pleased to say that Madison’s shoulder is now getting better, the exercises help and now she can at least stretch both her arms out again to do a proper starting jump and begin to do the arm strokes again.

It should be fine by Sunday, when we go to Melanie Marshall’s Swim inspirations camp.

But Madison is itching to join her fellow swimmers next season to make the podium on the premium events.

Even her friends who went to Welsh Nationals achieved very good placings in finals so far and Madison closely follows her long-standing training partner Kaia Cudmore on her success.

Somehow what Madison lost on training through injury before the end of the season will be made up through the mid-season swim camp. It is all working out fine but Madison really wanted to be part of the action, which is definitely going to happen next season.

We gotten our new training plan, and it provides the much-needed gym sessions, three sessions per week at the London Aquatic Centre. Most of Madison’s former friends from the LACPP, which was then taken over by Newham, have now also joined Hackney Aquatics. HAC is the club to be for us East Londoners.

I am a fan

Just trying to organise a fan-trip to Sheffield next week to support some of our Hackney swimmers.

When I first looked up the printable start-list the swimmers all appeared and I believed that two of our swimmers Ryan and Jude swim on the Thursday morning.

Got on to purchase tickets for the Ponds Forge Venue and then the train tickets. But then, just before I purchased the train tickets, I thought, I check the start lists again to make sure I got the correct day.

By then the printable start lists had disappeared. So what now? I think our club could at least publish the dates our swimmers are performing so that we fans can get tickets to watch them.

Because if I want to purchase tickets from the British Swimming website, there is no direct link to printed start lists.

How can fans be expected to travel to support certain swimmers if one doesn’t know when they swim?

Well on schedule

Pleased to discover that Madison already has achieved 6 automatic qualifying times for next year’s County Championships.

Even though she does not participate in any national competition this year, the qualifying window for counties gets better each year, indicating an over-all improvement of performance. Meaning Madison qualifies for more difficult target times earlier than before.

In previous years Madison had to struggle to get the County qualifying times in time for registration but this year we are well ahead. The 2018 season has not yet finished and we already qualify for 2019.

 

 

Officials are important

Just heard that a distance meet planned in conjunction with Chelsea and Westminster swimming club at their pool for next week Thursday has had to be cancelled for a lack of officials.

It can happen, that if a club wants to get swimmers into a meet that the club will not be accepted if they do not bring officials.

I am very pleased that I have now become a J2 and will be very willing to encourage other parents to become officials too.

that’s a club

Now I know what a superb club is run like. What a difference it makes to be in a club with a superb set of parent volunteers and excellent and dedicated coaches.

We have had the new squad structure circulated for next season and I am very pleased to learn that Madison has made the Performance Youth Squad.

But a great club is not just about the squads, it’s also about the volunteer engagement and the life-long swimming prospects for all involved.

Everything works for the benefit of all and everybody is happy. So far so good.

The new training schedule from next season involves the Lido and Madison already got a taster of swimming there at the Hackney Community event.

Very happy we are having 4 AM sessions per week as we are getting used to waking up early. It’s a bit strange to have to get up very early one day and late the next. It is better for the body clock to alway get up at the same time.

Summer’s here

There is an enormous feel-good factor in Britain since England won the entry into the quarter finals in the FIFA world cup.

It just couldn’t be better. We had a wonderful Community day with Hackney Aquatics, a very exciting finish to the season when some of our swimmers take part in the nationals and, hugely exciting, a new training schedule and competition schedule for next season.

Everybody seems satisfied and happy.

 

Fabulous fun day

Today was a great fun day, unforgettable, filled with ambition and eagerness to achieve, coupled with fun.

swimthames2

In the early afternoon was the 3km swim for the London Region Open Water championships at Surrey Quay and following that was another 2km sponsored swim at the London Fields Lido.

swimthames3
Madison, still with her number 60 on the skin from the London Open Water Championships 2018

It was really enjoyable seeing the coaches chip in and swim for fun too.

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Rick Hall, HAC head coach on his sponsored swim, go Rick

Everybody enjoyed themselves, superb.

I shall greatly miss Coach Naomi, who always encouraged me to join Hackney Aquatics.

 

just training

Having no competition for 2 weeks feels just like a holiday. Currently just training, the usual 7 times per week and it gets easier, the longer its done.

Just remember the posts made when we started the regular AM training with constant moaning about having to get up.

Now its all routine and such a toddle.

Busy raising money for the annual fund-raiser “Swim the Thames”. We have generous neighbours and the fund-raising form fills. But there are some who pay immediately and there are some who pledge.

Rather than keeping all the cash collected we just pay it via the club’s GoFundMe page and leave the rest of the donations for later, until the pledgers paid up.

Feeling fresh and relaxed, it’s always good to help and be positive, our club is such a great place to be and the team is fabulous.

The up-coming competitions feel easy and not bothered about having 2 800 m freestyle competitions on 2 consecutive days.

Swimming is fun!!!

Breaststroke ahoi

Madison is not ashamed to laboriously pick up her breaststroke skills to build up the full set of strokes to be proud of.

Of course there are a quite a few swimmers in the club who already found their special fast strokes and qualified for this year’s English and British nationals but Madison will continue to build skills across the range.

Today, at the very nice Hackney Development meet, Madison swam the breaststroke and took the 50m breast by storm with a new Personal Best of 42:79 improved from 45:79.

But then, came the amazingly generous lunch that Hackney Aquatics provided for Young volunteers and that 3/4 pizza made Madison look like she swallowed a stone when she participated in the 100 breast straight after lunch with a new Personal Best of 1:36:84. yet it is an improvement from 1:37:19.

There is a very good feeling for not resting on the laurels and continuing to graft on all skills.

Being Young Volunteers is an incredibly rewarding experience for Hackney Swimmers, the club is very friendly and has skill building for the swimmers at its heart.