Category Archives for Coaching

Grading each other’s character in a team setting

Quote from the article: "There’s no in between."

So, players get "0s" or "1s". Really?

Even in the US political elections, it is stupid to have the votes that we present citizens / voters. Winner take all. Rather, how about percentage voting?

Could be 0 to 1 in .1 steps.

Wondering what are the 20 (?) traits in the survey?

The 20 character traits the program values:

  1. work ethic, 
  2. confidence,
  3. respect,
  4. trust,
  5. commitment,
  6. desire to win, and
  7. desire to improve.
What would you measure and ask about?

Leave your reply in the comments below.

Pool side ab routine with wheels and home-made TRX bands

Amp up the core work with these two pieces of equipment. They are gems.

Ab wheels.

Alternate. Do a set with the ab wheels. Then move to the TRX-like ropes and do a set there. Then go back for the next round.

Hanging the bands, or loops, or TRX-like rope from the 3-meter diving board provides room for one athlete.

Simple nylon rope and rubber cut from an old tire inter-tube and tied down with a knot and extra duct tape for added softness and security.

Instructions and routine for the TRX-like ropes:

Insert feet and assume a push-up position with hands on floor, but legs able to sway.

We do five types of exercises:

  1. CRUNCHES (knees to elbows);
  2. PIKES (bottom up with legs straight; 
  3. TWISTS (with two knees going up side to one elbow):
  4. MOUNTAIN Climbers (running one leg at a time); and finally,
  5. WILDCARD (athlete gets to pick a new motion or repeat a prior one). Nice wildcard is one hand touches other shoulder. 
Repetitions
  • Week 1 = 10 reps. 
  • Week 2 = 15 reps.
  • Moving to 25 without stopping.

Exercise

Style / Method / Motion

Reps with week 1

Ab wheels

Straight, out and back. 

10 reps

TRX-like Rope

CRUNCHES (knees to elbows)

10 reps

Ab wheels

Straight, out and back. 

10 reps

TRX-like Rope

PIKES (bottom up with legs straight)

10 reps

Ab wheels

Straight, out and back. 

10 reps

TRX-like Rope

TWISTS (with two knees going up side to one elbow)

10 reps

Ab wheels

Straight, out and back. 

10 reps

TRX-like Rope

MOUNTAIN Climbers (running one leg at a time)

10 reps

Ab wheels

Straight, out and back. 

10 reps

TRX-like Rope

WILDCARD (athlete gets to pick a new motion or repeat a prior one). Example wildcard is one hand taps opposite shoulder.

10 reps

WPIAL Swim & Diving connection with Westminster College

    Pat Smith – Westminster College - Head Swimming and Diving Coach

    2019 results for the Titans
    • Women's team - Conference Champions - First Time in 12 years. 
    • Men's team - 2nd place. Have been Conference Champs 5 of last 7 years and have been 1st or 2nd in conference every year since 2003.
  • Head coach swam at South Park High School and graduated in 2004.
  • Diving coach, Heath Calhoun, graduated from Butler High School and was WPIAL runner up in diving and 3rd at PIAA Meet.
  • Westminster's coach's message

    I tell everyone we meet, come to Westminster ready to work hard, be a good teammate, get good grades, don't get in trouble, and have fun, and you will be successful. All of those things don't take talent.

    People of Westminster:
    • David Peffer - Riverside - Conference Champion - currently ranked 19th in NCAA Division 3 in the 200 Back, just named first team all conference.
    • Matt Kwalick - Quaker Valley - 200 IM - School Record Holder, just named first team all conference.
    • Roody D'Agaro - Chartiers Valley - 2nd team all conference
    • Carolyn Novak - Upper St. Clair - conference Champ in the 100 Free, 1st team all conference.
    • Maggie Manolis - Jeannette High school - conference champ 100 BR and 200 BR. 1st team all conference.
    • Jamie Elia - Blackhawk - 1 meter and 3 meter Diving - Regional Qualifier, 1st team all conference.
    • Abby Jones - Knoch High school - 2nd team all conference, conference runner up in 200 IM, 100 BR. 200 BR.
    • Nicole Stengel - Carlyngton High School - 2nd team all conference, 2nd place in the 200 fly, 3rd place in the 100 fly.
    • Megan Routch - West Allegheny High School - 2nd team all conference, 4th place in the 200 free and 1650 free.
    More Team members who are WPIAL Swimmers
    • Constantine Kallaur - Distance - Bethel Park
    • Kevin MacMurdo - Distance - Carlynton
    • Nicholas Pirollo - Sprint Free - Canon Mac
    • Brittney Drobka - Sprint Free - Kiski Area
    • Courtney Kinkead - Free/Fly - Greater Latrobe
    • Carinna Lapson - Free/Fly - Hopewell
    • Cait Peace - Breast/IM - Blackhawk
    • Emily Russell - Free - Bethel Park
    Alumni at WPIALS
    • Tom Donati '91 - Mt. Lebanon
    • Todd Slobodnyak '12 - Mars

Beaver Falls High School swimmer sprints into her 4th WPIAL meet

Source: Chelsea Dawson, coach the Beaver Falls High School Swim Team.

Our school pool has been closed for about seven years now due to financial reasons. However, refusing to let our team fade away into the sunset, we found a new facility to practice at. Our team now practices everyday during the swim season at New Brighton's community pool.

Meet Gabby Minto 

We have one swimmer, Gabriella (Gabby) Minto, who has made it to WPIALs all four years of her high school career. She will be competing in the 50 yard Freestyle and the 100 yard Freestyle. She is an amazing athlete who has worked so hard for all of her accomplishments. Last year, she even made it to states in the 50 yard Freestyle.

I am always looking for ways to inspire my swimmers to never give up and always try their best. This season I searched for inspirational quotes to provide swimmers with before every meet. The quote I am using for Gabby for her first day at WPIALs on Thursday is from the Highland Hurricanes Swim Club's head coach, Nick Castillo. "Swim your Race! Think like a Bumble Bee and Race like a Race horse!" Bumble Bees think about what they are going to do and they are humble. They also fly when others don’t think they can. When it comes to race horses, swimmers train hard and come meet time, they race like them.

I am so proud to be a swim coach and am looking forward to having a great time at WPIALs at the end of this week.

New sports and coaching term discovered by me in an article, JOYSTICKING. Go figure.

 I was fooled by the terms definition. Interesting read. 

Killing youth sports is too much "sky is falling" over reach for my tastes. 

However, I am all in favor of getting our swimmers far more game play, more fun fitness without strict coaching on every move, more teamwork, sportsmanship, social interactions, on-the-fly communications, problem solving. Yet these can't be "wasted time" or even of questionable value. So getting quality, enriching, purposeful group play that builds to something better, that adds dimensions to the the program and still furthers the progress of competitive swimmers is what I advocate and cherish -- and its prevalent with SKWIM, IMNSHO. 

And to put in the last zinger to go anti-joysticking, put the coach(es) in the water with the athletes while playing SKWIM. Be on a side. Play with the swimmers. Offense, defense, model, and while getting in your own fitness and fun too, eye-to-eye without a joystick, while playing. Player-coaching, or captain-coaching is joystick proof.

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