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The History of EAST

The Eastside Aquatic Swim Team (“EAST”) was established during the summer of 2013. As one of the most respected swim coaches in the Puget Sound area, Coach Jing Li had always dreamed of forming his own team on the Eastside.  Coach Jing, together with his experienced and committed parent leadership group, formed EAST in three short months. They applied and received PNS approval for full-season team, secured multiple pool leases with desirable practice times and locations (accommodating 75+ swimmers) through the summer of 2014, successfully bid to host an upcoming PNS/USA Swimming-sanctioned meet, and completed a membership drive that registered 60 swimmers in one week.

EAST is a coach-owned swim team.  Coach Jing started swimming at the age of 7 and swam competitively through the mid-1980’s.  He was a member of the Chinese Junior National squad that trained in Beijing and Kunming from 1983 to 1985.  He then studied physical science and physical training, earning a bachelor’s degree in Swimming in China.  He was an assistant coach on the Kunming Municipal Swim Team and Yunnan Provincial Swim Team during 1987-1991.  Coach Jing worked at the Bellevue YMCA as part of the coaching staff on BEST from 2004 -2013, where he brought an extensive following of swimmers to the team from his lesson programs, which focus on technique development. As the head coach of BEST, he trained dozens of competitive swimmers in the Puget Sound area, many of whom have won top honors at the most competitive PNS and High School events.  His BEST teams took home many first place wins at State and Regional championships as well. Known for his emphasis on proper swimming technique, Coach Jing is a highly respected coach amongst his coaching peers within PNS.

EAST has veteran leadership among the parent ranks. This committed group of parents has many years of club operational experience : registering swimmers with USA and PNS swimming, creating meet schedules, organizing meet officials, maintaining the team website, recruiting parent volunteers, organizing and mobilizing parent volunteers to support swim meets (hosted and invited), hosting PNS swim meets, and organizing social events and fundraisers. This proven leadership team will ensure a smooth and successful first year of EAST operations.

EAST embraces diversity and welcomes swimmers from different social, economic, and ethnic backgrounds to join and enjoy the sport of swimming. We look forward to a future of strong competition, expert training and coaching, and a fun and friendly environment for swimmers and families. 

A nonprofit booster club is being formed by the current parent leadership group to assist in team operations and community relations.   The role of the booster club will be:

  • Increase Club profile and support wider community involving swimming initiative
  • Establish swimming clinics for the local community
  • Establish a community resource and provide a benefit to the local community
  • Develop our children into contributing members of the community and our future leaders
  • Increase professional and personal development of our coach

The Booster Club will assist in the operation of the swim team, which includes organizing and hosting various swim team and fund raising events and setting up a financial assistance/scholarship program to encourage underprivileged swimmers to join the team.