About The Lake Erie Silver Dolphins
The Lake Erie Silver Dolphins (LESD) swim club is a member of Lake Erie Swimming, Inc., the northeast Ohio affiliate of USA Swimming, the national governing body for competitive swimming in the United States. There are about 4400 registered athletes within Lake Erie Swimming, with LESD having a membership of more than 400 of these.
LESD aims to provide a positive team culture that creates opportunities for each swimmer to develop to his or her potential. LESD swimmers are encouraged to be the best that they can be. Swimmers learn the value of hard work, commitment, and self-discipline. They are taught to take responsibility for their actions and to develop a true appreciation for what they, as a team and as individuals, can accomplish. These critical, character building life lessons resonate with Silver Dolphins for the rest of their lives.
Since Lake Erie Swimming was established in the late 1960's, LESD has won every age group championship meet, long course and short course since 1968. Lake Erie Silver Dolphin swimmers hold many of the LSC records in all age groups. LESD has won the women’s team high points for several USA Sectional meets, were the overall team champions at the 2013 spring Sectional Championship, and have produced Junior and Senior National Champions and High Point winners, Open Water National Champions, World Champions, and Olympians. They regularly provide a large group of qualifiers for Lake Erie all-star teams, Quads, and Zones.
LESD was a USA Swimming Gold Medal Club in 2008, and is currently a Silver Medal Club (2012-2014). LESD has also earned Level II in the USA Swimming Club Recognition Program. The Club Recognition Program identifies and recognizes USA Swimming clubs for their commitment to excellence in operation, performance, and the support and development of USA Swimming.
The team operates on a 12-month basis, with short breaks between seasons. The summer ("long course") season starts early in April and extends through mid-August, while the winter season ("short course") runs from September through late March.
The team is divided into separate groups designated by color: GOLD, SILVER, BRONZE, GREEN, BLUE, RED, and WHITE. The gold group is the senior level of swimming, while the red and white children are learning the basics of competitive stroke mechanics. Each group is made up of swimmers who are similar in ability, experience, and age. To allow for reasonable practice times for all, several pools are used: Hawken Upper School, Hawken Lower School, Hathaway Brown School, SPIRE Institute, Cleveland Skating Club, & Cleveland State University.
LESD's program is aimed at developing young swimmers' skills and conditioning so that they have the opportunity to succeed not only at each of the various age groups along the way, but also at the senior level. Swimmers entering the team at the red or white grouping generally move up through the ranks as they improve over the years.