National Speeches

The following are presentations given by OA coaches at the ASCA (American Swimming Coaches Association) World Clinics:

Putting Character First: August 2011

Selling the Vision, Building the Team

Commanding the Workout

USA Swimming On-Line Coaches Clinics: June 1st, 2011, the OA Coaches presented a seminar entitled "Developing Athletics Character on Your Team"

Several Responses to the On-line Coaches Clinic:

Don & Ron,

I wanted to thank you for taking the time to do the online clinic. The concepts you covered and do with your team on a daily basis are the same ones we are trying to instill at our team.  Your team's website has lots of great information as well. I have been trying to figure out the best way to sell the team philosophy and incorporate the character traits that you brought up.  The clinic was very helpful in all those respects.  Would it be alright with you to contact you in the future to ask questions? Both of you have created a great team based on these concepts.
Thank you again for sharing this with us
Dear Ron and Don,
I would like to commend you both for today's presentation on Character Education and Coaching. It has been a number of years since I have been coaching on a pool deck...At that time, I was finishing up a 'young' coaching career and I wanted you both to know that I always admired the work you did with your athletes. Today's webinar reinforced that belief.
I am writing this email because I think your presentation can help many young, passionate coaches who are considering getting into the swim coaching world/arena because character education is essential when working athletes of any age. As a staff member for the CCC Board of Supervisors, I completely agree that we live in a society that does not stress the importance of character education and I again, commend you, USA Swimming, and ASCA for highlighting that today.
I want to reiterate your point that many coaches were/are results driven but these results were usually only proven by the stopwatch, not the evaluation of their athletes. In my opinion, that evaluation is the heart of what today's presentation is all about.
I agree with the emphasis in creating a successful team, and becoming a successful coach should not just be about developing fast swimmers, but helping create individuals with high character traits. I hope other coaches, board members and parents will understand this too.
Hopefully other coaches and teams can take to heart in today's discussion and truly emphasize character development within their organization. Your presentation created a great resource tool and infrastructure that I hope all USS and summer rec team's use by discussing this topic at their coaching-staff meetings. If everyone could understand the importance of character education, then all dimensions of the sport can benefit.
Thank you again for discussing a topic that, understandably, does not take the highest priority in the swimming world but is essentially important. I think by addressing this issue and the fact that USA Swimming/ASCA highlighted this opportunity to showcase it to their audience, proves that standards are being raised in our sport and local community.
Best of luck to you and your program. You are clearly doing things the right way.
Hi Donnie & Ronnie-

I just finished listening to your recording on the USA Swimming site 
about Developing Character in Swimmers. It was outstanding! Thank you 
for doing it and taking the time to share your philosophy. 
Coincidentally, I will be using your philosophy tonight in our swim 
team's Board meeting, specifically the idea that the team takes 
precedence over the individual, to address a problem that we are 
having on our team. Though I am a Masters coach & my day to day 
dealing is with adults, occasionally I sub for the age group coaches. 
I see how your team philosophy takes care of many of the problems that 
irk me when I coach the age groupers. I am going to recommend that our 
head coach & the Board study your team culture and adapt it to our team.
Fantastic job that you have done; congratulations!