By Kirk Hampleman, Director of Competitive
The Hula Invitational is in the books and it was great seeing so
many of our young athletes outside competing!!! I would like to
thank all of our families and staff for putting on a great event. I
would also like to especially thank Jana Lechner for doing such a
wonderful job as Meet Director- Great Job Jana! It just goes to
show that when we all come together as a Piranha Family we can
accomplish a lot. We look forward to the possibility of hosting
more meets in the future and having the help of our families makes
such a big difference.
Our Staff was very happy that we had so many Piranhas out
competing. It is so exciting to see all of the growth and progress
that we have made as a team in the pool. We have more meets coming
up and I would like to encourage all of you to compete as much as
possible. Competition can strengthen our teams character and
provide us with feedback on how our training is going. It is vital
that we test ourselves every few weeks in order to check on our
evolution as an athlete. The Hula Invite should be a springboard
for the rest of the summer going forward. In June we have 2 meets,
Hickory for the 12 and unders and our seniors will travel to
Morehead City, NC. I look forward to seeing you at the pool!
I would also like to remind our families that early registration
is open for the 2014-2015 season. Please visit our Piranha web site
for more information. Remember, if you register before June 16th
you get a 25.00 reduction on your registration fee.
Thank you from the Piranha Staff and good luck
By Kiki Farmer, Associate Director & Crush
It is that time of year, the summer camp & activity
season. We would just like to take a moment to
explain a little bit of the coach’s
philosophy on “swim camps” for your current
and future guidance.
The whole topic can in no way be covered in this
column. But it is important to get the dialogue
started. The YWNC coaching staff believes it is not
advantageous for 13/over swimmers to go to swim camps over the
summer. When swimmers spend time away from their home
club and coach over the short summer swim season, it is difficult
for the home coach to track and manage the training plan for the
As far as the 12/und swimmer...we are still not whole heartedly
for camps, but we are not totally against them either. For a 12/un
swimmer, a onetime experience at a swim camp can be fun and spark a
deeper involvement in swimming. However, for young swimmers
to attend swim camps multiple years, again keeps them from working
within the realm of their home club. We would ask that you
talk to us about what the swimmer hopes to get out of the camp. We
could talk with you about situations that would be better choices.
The best way to explain this is, when a swimmer qualifies for a
camp (NC Select Camp, USA Swimming Regional Select Camp, Y National
Altitude Camp…..) by virtue of their performance
achievement, then that is a camp that should be attended. Those are
2-31/2 days and have very specific purposes and again are earned by
Our biggest concern is, the camp staff has no long term vested
interest in the swimmer other than collecting camp fees and
providing the swimmer a good “swim oriented” time on
the college campus site of the camp.
We understand the allure of working with an elite college or
national level swimmer and/or coach at camp. However, they are not
going to be there at the end of the season to be responsible for
the swimmer’s performance. Plus while away at camp, the
swimmer is not developing the on-going working relationship with
the home coach.
We hope this opens the dialogue. For those of you that may
be thinking about camps, please contact Cch Kirk or Cch Kiki
(12/unders) for our input.
Nutrition - Superfoods, cont.
Blueberries nutrition facts
Sweet, juicy blueberries are rich
in pro-anthocyanin natural pigment anti-oxidants. These
tiny, round blue-purple berries have long been attributed to the
longevity and wellness of indigenous natives living in the
subarctic regions in the Northern hemisphere.
Botanically, the plant is a deciduous shrub belonging within the
family of Ericaceae, of the genus: Vaccinium.
Broadly, vaccinium species are classified according to
their growth habit as high-bush and low-bush berries.
- High-bush blueberry (Vaccinium corymbosum) is highly branched,
erect deciduous shrub with rich foliage. It grows up to 10-12 feet
tall in cultivated orchards and bears clusters of small,
cream-white flowers during spring, which subsequently develop into
berries after about two months. In the wild, high bush-blueberry is
found on the edges of marshes, lakes, ponds, and
streams. Rabbiteye blueberry (Vaccinium virgatum, also
known as V. ashei.) is a medium-sized shrub grows naturally in
South Eastern parts of USA.
- Low-bush blueberry (Vaccinium angustifolium) is a short, erect
plant grows about one-two feet in height and spread by underground
rhizomes. In cultivated farms, it is grown as two-year cycle crop,
since the whole plant is either mowed down or burnt to allow new
shoots that appear only during next season.
Both species require well-drained sandy, acidic soil to
flourish. This berry shrub prefers open sunny conditions and
intolerant of shade. In general, the berries are ready to harvest
when the green- pink color turns completely blue, juicy and
sweeter. Traditionally, they handpicked and therefore, require
intense laboring. Soon after the berries separated from the shrub,
they are sorted out and transport to cold facility for storage.
Health benefits of blueberries
- Blueberries are very low in calories. 100 g fresh berries
provide only 57 calories. However, they possess notable health
benefiting plant-nutrients such as soluble dietary fiber, minerals,
vitamins, and pigment anti-oxidants that contribute immensely
towards optimum health and wellness.
- Blueberries are among the highest anti-oxidant value fruits.
The ORAC value of 100 g fresh blueberry is 5562
TE (Trolex equivalents). Their antioxidant value largely
derived from poly-phenolic anthocyanidincompounds such
as chlorogenic acid, tannins, myricetin,
quercetin and kaempferol.
- In addition, these berries have other flavonoid anti-oxidants
such as carotene-β, lutein and zea-xanthin.
- Altogether, the phyto-chemical compounds in the blueberry help
rid off harmful oxygen-derived free radicals from the body, and
thereby, protect the human body against cancers, aging,
degenerative diseases, and infections.
- Further, research studies suggest that chlorogenic
acid in these berries help lower blood sugar levels and
control blood-glucose levels in type-II diabetes mellitus
- Fresh berries contain a small amount of vitamin C, vitamin A
and vitamin E. Altogether these vitamins work as potent
anti-oxidants, which help limit free radical mediated injury to the
- The berries also contain a small amount of B-complex group of
vitamins such as niacin, pyridoxine, folates and pantothenic acid.
It contains very good amounts of vitamin B-6, niacin, riboflavin,
pantothenic acid and folic acid. These vitamins are acting as
co-factors help the body metabolize carbohydrates, protein, and
- Furthermore, they contain a good amount of minerals like
potassium, manganese, copper, iron and zinc. Potassium is
an important component of cell and body fluids that helps
controlling heart rate and blood pressure. Manganese is used by the
body as a co-factor for the antioxidant enzyme, superoxide
dismutase. Copper is required for the production of red blood
cells. Iron is required for red blood cell formation.
Selection and storage
In the United States, blueberries are readily available in the
markets throughout the year, since they imported across the
continents. However, fresh wild berries are at their best from June
until August when the harvest season begins in Michigan and Maine
in USA and from Quebec province of Canada.
In the stores, look for fresh berries that are firm, plump,
smooth-skinned, with a silver-gray surface bloom. Buy deep
purple-blue to blue-black berries. Avoid soft or shriveled,
over-handled bruised berries and those with signs of mold and of
Once at home, place the berries in a plastic or zip pouch and
store inside the refrigerator set at high relative humidity. Stored
thus, they stay well for up to a week.
Preparation and serving tips
Blueberries are sweet and juicy, leaves deep-blue pigment stain
over teeth and tongue. Trim away any stems and leaves if you have
purchased berries directly from the local farmer.
They are better eaten fresh after washing in cold water. If
taken out from the cold storage, place them in a bowl of water to
bring to normal room temperature to enrich their taste and
palatability. Gently pat dry using a moisture absorbent cloth/
paper and enjoy!
Here are some serving tips:
- Traditionally, blueberries have been part of food culture of
- While fresh berries eaten as they are like table grapes, dried ones added to soup, stews,
and to sweeten venison meat.
- They are one of the most preferred berries in the preparation
of muffins, pies, and cheesecakes.
- These berries are also favorite addition in fruit salads, fresh
fruit-tarts, ice-creams, etc.
- They are also used to make juice, sauce, jellies, and jams.
Blueberries may rarely cause serious allergic reactions in some
sensitized individuals. Often, these kinds of reactions occur
because of possible cross-reactions to other fruits (strawberry), pollen or weed allergies. Some of
the most common symptoms of blueberry allergy may include swelling
and redness of mouth, lips and tongue, eczema, hives, skin rash,
headache, runny nose, itchy eyes, wheezing and gastrointestinal
disturbances. Individuals who suspect allergy to these fruits may
want to avoid eating them.
Our young Nehis have taken to the long 50m pools like champs! We
are working very hard on building our technique and endurance and,
more importantly, having fun. As the school year is coming to
a close, we need to be mindful our attendance and still need to try
to practice at least 3 days a week to maintain our skills and
technique, but also to improve ourselves. We can't wait to
see you all poolside!
We are very proud of our Orange Group Swimmers who have
participated in our Hula Meet. We were/are thrilled with the
performances we saw and, more importantly, the team spirit and
support that was on display. We need to remember that our
long course season continues all the way to August and that we have
practice six days a week beginning at 8 am. This is the time
we can really make huge strides in our endurance and technique, as
well as, develop strong bonds with our teammates!
Let's go Orange and Black!
As June begins, we will be watching 3 of our group move to new
states and new teams. This is a reminder to us
all that the only thing that stays the same in life
is…CHANGE. Things are always changing, some are subtle
changes that happen slowly every day and others are big
changes. We wish Wade, Madelynne and Isabelle all the best as
they move to WSY (Penn.) and NAC (Tn.) swim teams. We will
miss them VERY much and should keep in touch! We also wish
them the best as their families move to a new chapter in their
lives. Hopefully we will see them at some meets in the
As I write this, we have swum 2 meets already and will swim in a
third-13-15/Jun, just as our various schools release for the
summer. After the third meet, we will switch from our
Transitional schedule to our Summer schedule of morning
practices. These morning practices are VERY important!
There are much less chances of weather disruptions for the morning
practices and it is the primary practice for the whole
team…meaning a better opportunity to engage with all your
team mates. We are spread out at many different pools
during the school year and the summer morning practices have so
much more “team building” value past the actual
Crush swimmers have been doing a good job with practices and meets
thus far this summer and are ready to complete their Iron Piranha
challenge for the summer as well as qualify well for the Y Regional
Champs and the NC 14/un State Champs. As there are new swimmers in
the group and we are a young group, we are always working on stroke
mechanics. We have begun a “practice
challenge” of swimming all the events in 11-12 event list in
one practice. We will keep track of everyone’s total
times (like the Pentathlon events) as a measure of how well
everyone improves in this tough practice set!
I have seen a great improvement (practice and meets) in the
swimmers that have been diligent with their log books. The
goal is for swimmers to track their practices and connect it to
their improvement. They can also make note of things they did
well and things they want to improve on. It is for them to
grade themselves, so to speak. They are also to track their
performances at meets in their log books. The goal is to
begin and then to see the connection between what is done in
practice and the resulting outcome at a meet. Log books also
offer a place for coach and swimmer to begin to talk about their
swimming. Each log book reflects each swimmers personality
and different communication styles. They do not have to be
fancy but they do have to be kept up regularly. Swimmers can
work together and share recording workouts that one may have
forgotten and another remembered. They are asked to turn them
in on the 1st and 15th of each month.
If those dates fall on a weekend, then the log books are to be
turned in on the Monday.
Orange and Black!
This season, we see so many new faces and are excited to get to
know each and every one of them. Let's make sure to welcome
each and every one and let them know that we are happy to
have them on our team.
Long course season is the time that we see swimmers really begin
to excel at the sport of swimming. This is also the season
where we really begin to develop our aerobic abilities and fitness
levels. We encourage each and every one of you to come
to as many practices as possible and if you and your family happen
to go on vacation during the swim season, please seek out a team in
the area you are vacationing to swim with. If you need help
contacting/finding a team, please let one of us know and we will
see what we can do for you.
Looking forward to a great season!
This season, we have available two different practices for our
Henderson County Piranhas. Please be sure to attend 3-5
practices a week to ensure that we are progressing and building
ourselves not only as swimmers but as teammates. We are a
large team and we need to work together to reach our goals!