August 21, 2020
That was an amazing 12 weeks. WOW
Thank you to Judy, Eric and Mitch for their tireless energy and passion on deck to make it all possible.
Thank you to the YMCA and especially aquatic directors Lisa and Dan, aquatic coordinator Jay, and Associate Branch Director Angie for making everything work. We have been very fortunate this summer.
AND thank you to the swimmers. Energy, excitement, passion, every day. It was a privilege to be out there with you every day.
There have been so many highlights, but it is hard to top the swimmer’s smiles on the first day back.
There has been a lot of concern about how young people will adapt to this new world we live in now. I am not worried. Watching all ages adapt and learn. I know this next year can be great in the classroom, in the pool, everywhere.
The summer concluded with Virtual NKB Camp. The presentations are available on our website. NKB Video Link . I encourage everyone to watch them. The value in each of them far exceeds the time to watch.
Day 1 – Jamal Hill. Jamal is an elite para-swimmer. His presentation is on Racism. Full discloser, I probably won’t re-watch the first part that talks about the long history of Racism in Aquatics, but I have already re-watched the last 60-75 minutes. It is fantastic.
Day 2 – Dr Megan – Dr Megan’s presentation was on dealing with Stress. I guess if you have no stress in your life you can skip this one, but for any of us that have stress, the time spent listening to DR Megan is well worth it…or you can just wing it on your own (sarcasm).
Day 3 – Drs Taylor, Taylor, Bolin (OSHY alum), and Van Huis (OSHY alum) gave us the straight talk on COVID from the trenches of both practicing doctors and policy making. Beats anything you see on TV. AND….2 time Olympian, 9 time World Champion Katie Hoff broke down the process of achievement. Anyone that wants to be good at anything should watch this.
Day 4 – Toni Armstrong – WATCH THIS. I will probably make this required viewership for OSHY membership. A spot on, great presentation on the roles that are necessary for an organization to be great. Everyone can learn something valuable from this.
And again, full disclosure, I do very little to make this happen. The NKB Leadership group, made up of OSHY alums and NKB Camp alums do it all. The group is amazing. All young professionals – Drs, nurses, engineers, and teachers – that commit countless hours to providing an experience for others. They were all great swimmers, YMCA National participants, collegiate All-Americans and conference champions, NCAA D1 team captains, but more importantly very successful outside of the pool. It you are ever looking for role models for your children, get involved with the NKB movement. It doesn’t get any better than the NKB Leadership group.
PERFORMANCE ORIENTED SWIMMERS
As many of you know, I was a distance runner in HS and college. As a distance runner you learned quickly that it is the work that you did when you weren’t competing, summers and winters, that really determined how well you did when you were competing, spring and fall. Those that struggled with motivation when they weren’t competing, never were that good. The star competitors were the ones that were motivated when there weren’t competitions. This summer was like that. And this fall will be like that too. We had one small meet this summer (and we will have a few small ones this fall), but more of what we did was prepare for later. When? Not sure, but later. Those that truly embraced the preparation without competing have done amazing things in the pool.
If you want to be great in the pool you need to embrace the preparation without competition? There are two reasons why.
One, simply, that is how high-level achievement is done. Katie’s presentation covered it all. It is about out-preparing others.
And two, it is all we have right now. If you don’t embrace what we have, there is nothing. Passion is necessary and you must be passionate about what you have.
Toni’s presentation last night was about leadership and followership. We don’t have practice for about 12 days. Use what she taught us to work together and move forward in these 12 days, not backwards. The YMCA is open. Reserve lanes and work. Reach out to your teammates. If you can only work hard when a coach is standing over you, you are severely limiting yourself. You know what to do. Think about the decision Katie made at 9 or 10 years of age about her preparation. Be that worker. (If you didn’t watch Toni or Katie’s presentation, they are worth giving up Instagram for a couple hours to watch them.)