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2021-22 Season

 

We want to thank Coach Barry and the Marlins for diligently working to make this season happen.  Just getting the kids back in the pool was an enormous feat.  Our 8 year old granddaughter could not have been happier to get to those initial 6am swim practices.  Whenever I meet Coach Barry in the parking lot, he always has a great smile for the girls that makes them want to get through the door first.  Once again, Coach, thanks for making this unbelievable season a memorable and fun experience!

N. Broderick


This is my son's third year with the Marlins. Originally when we joined I had no idea how much swimming for the Marlins would change his life. At first I was dubious he would even stick with it, but he did... and he loved it! He loved practicing, he loved competing, he loved his Coach (Shout out to Coach Becky here) and he loved being able to see real tangible results from his hard work. And then the pandemic hit. And everything changed for him, swimming had been his outlet for all of that energy and he suddenly felt very adrift. Thankfully the Marlins had a plan and he was back in the pool (safely I will add) 2020-2021 has been a difficult and uncertain year for everyone and Coach Becky and Coach Bill have challenged and helped my son learn so many valuable skills beyond swimming. He has learned about hard work, perseverance, and dedication. And he has come through this year with a new maturity and a commitment to excel.  I am incredibly impressed with the entire Marlins organization, and every year that has passed has only reinforced how happy we are to be part of the Marlins family. 

Tanya S.    
 

The Marlins swim program did a fantastic job during the pandemic helping my sons grow in their swimming ability. My youngest son started the season with only a basic swim ability and by the end of the season was confident enough to participate in meets. He now thinks of himself as an athlete and a swimmer. He also made friends and had a great time.

J. Sherry

We joined the Marlins the fall prior to the pandemic and my kids saw massive improvements with Barry and Bill, exceeding their levels from the prior years when they were both on the Eastern Zone team, with my younger swimmer finishing top 3 in the IMX meet under the Marlins. Then, with the pandemic, we didn't know if we were facing an indefinite halt. The Marlins did an amazing job bringing the kids back and, despite the pandemic, both my children saw year over year improvements again including my older swimmer making high school states as a freshman, far exceeding our goals. 

C. Hastings

My daughter is 13 and she has been with the Marlins for 4 years now. I was at first hesitant to sign her up for swimming during covid lockdowns but I am very glad I did. Coach Reid was able to make swimming practice safe for the kids by practicing socially distancing the swimmers in different parts of the lane and also taking temperatures. He was wonderful with coaching them techniques this year. I am so grateful my daughter was able to get out of the house and work out despite the lockdown. Thank you Potomac Marlins! 

N. Duckett

 

The Marlins Swim Team has been fantastic.  My daughter is an older beginner, but that didn't seem to deter anyone with The Marlins when I asked about signing her up in December of 2020.  It was in the midst of the pandemic, but the precise protocols and procedures created for swimmers and families were fabulous.  My daughter was welcomed with warmth and enthusiasm and I received responses from her coach from all of my quirky emails.  To this day, my daughter jumps out of the car and jogs into the building every night there's practice!  Wonderful coaching staff, swim meet organization, communication with families. volunteer opportunities and help with paying team fees were all impressive, professional and enthusiastic! 

M. Collard

Our son has been with the Marlins for almost 3 years. We love that the organization has coaches for all different competition levels as there are very advanced swimmers, and those who want to be dedicated to the sport, even if they will not be serious competitors. The different coaches that my son has had have always been friendly, respectful, and fun. The improvement over the years has been great as well. We look forward to continuing with the club. 

D. Gregory

Just completed our 3rd year with Potomac Marlins and registering for next year already! I can't say enough about how amazing this team has been for us but with the unprecedented pandemic beginning over a year ago, now more than ever we are truly thankful. The Marlins got the kids in the water safely within 2 weeks of country shutdown by securing multiple outdoor pools and were even among the first teams to successfully run safe, social-distanced meets so our kids didn't miss racing. Top notch! The coaching staff treats my son like family and that is probably the best part of being with this club- multiple pools/groups but still where your child isn't just a number.  Thanks! -

Leigh H

We are the happy first timers who chose to send our 7 yr old to mighty marlins amidst covid. We couldn't be happier with the diligence followed at the pool with no compromise in practice. Our daughter had a very good year and improved a lot. Always ready for her swim practice. She loves her sessions with Coach Will, who kept her motivated all the time. Thanks for the awesome experience. We are looking for exciting journey with “POTOMAC MARLINS”.

Iniya's Parents

Our son is newly 7 and just started year-round swim this year, but he will already tell you that he is a Marlin for life.  The team does a great job of making even the littlest kids feel like they are an important part of the team, which has solidified our son's love of the sport and eagerness to work hard at practice.  Over his year as a Mighty Marlin, our son has bloomed as a swimmer, but more importantly has developed an understanding of the rewards of working hard as an athlete and the pride of being part of a team.

A. Bauerlein

This was our second year with the Potomac Marlins and we have to say thank you from the bottom of our hearts for making this year normal and special for us.  The staff and coaches were upbeat as they worked tirelessly to ensure practice in July, smooth practices throughout the year and that everyone got to swim.  Despite all of the restrictions and difficulties, the Marlins not only made practices run smoothly, meets available and allowed my son to improve his times, but they provided a space where the kids could still feel part of a team and engage. The year with the Marlins was critical to my son’s happiness and growth this year. THANK YOU

G. Young

Sam joined the Marlins to swim with his friend. When his friend chose a new club, Sam wanted to stay a Marlin. That decision speaks volumes. Coach Johann is responsive to our questions and has been hugely supportive during a year full of uncertainly. We appreciate all the transparency and extra efforts taken to keep staff and swimmers safe.  Thank you!

T. and J. Anderson

We have been loyal members of the Potomac Marlins for 4 years now. Both of my children (Alex, 12 and Grace, 10) LOVE! being members of this swim team. Even though the practices are very challenging, the coaches create a very positive and caring environment while fostering a competitive spirit. We are so happy that we found the Potomac Marlins when we moved here from California. We are so excited about the potential of this team and many future years of being a Potomac Marlins family!! 

D. and K. Wittmer

I love being on the Marlins because it's very welcoming and fun.  At the start of covid, before we could get in the pool, the coaches still encouraged working out and were helpful in finding ways to keep us fit.  Being part of the team has taught me about persevering, the idea that you get out what you put in, and made me better at communicating with adults.  Being a Marlin also has helped me achieve my goals in the pool, and my coaches always encourage me to set me own goals, and work with me how to meet them step-by-step.  I am really grateful to be on this team. 

L. Nguyen, (12 )

It’s our 5 th yr with Potomac Marlins! When covid started last year , our family is so greatful that Caleb swims . There group developed a good friendship! Coach Rick has been amazing not just coaching our kids to swim but he is there for them on there like a friend ! So this is not just a swim team , this becomes a family for us!  We are proud to be a part of Potomac Marlins. This year was Emma's second yr as a Marlin.  Through the pandemic, we did not only feel safe sending Emma to every practice and meets but Emma also improved quite a bit.  We appreciate your work in this difficult time.  We already registered for the next year!   

E. Lee

This was our first year joining the Potomac Marlins and are looking forward to the next season! From the beginning, the coaches and administrative staff were so welcoming, approachable and made the process so easy to join the team. Our daughter has enjoyed the practices a lot and her progress has been phenomenal. She participated in several swim meets this year, which she left feeling very proud and accomplished as being her first year competing. Coach James supported her and encouraged her to give her best all the time and his feedback was very helpful to her as well.  We as parents appreciate all the organization and responsibility that the PM staff took in order to keep all events and practices with safety in mind at all times. I volunteered as a timer in some of the meets and I have to say they were very organized, on time and all safety protocols were followed.  Thank you for opening the “pool doors” to our daughter and we look forward to the 21-22 Potomac Marlins swim team season!  

A. Allego

With so many pandemic related disappointments and cancellations, the continuity of the Marlins swim team has had obvious physical benefits. More importantly this year, the mental benefits were incalculable: being able to experience an activity in person with familiar friends and coaches in an otherwise isolating year is immeasurable. Nevermind that times were dropped and PRs made on a regular basis: maintaining that connection was critical to my daughter's overall development. Thank you Marlins swim program!

J. Davies

When Monet originially transfered to the team, our main goal was to shorten our travel time to practice.  Since then, Dulles South has built their pool located only four minutes away from us.  Monet chose to stay with the Marlins and Coach Steve.  This coming Fall season will be our 7th year with the Marlins.  During the onset of the pandemic, the uncertainty of when Monet will resume her normal activities weighted heavily on our minds.  All of your effort, Bill's effort, and Coach Steve's effort to keep swimmers connected, motivated, and back in the pool as soon as June was like the light at the end of the tunnel.  Furthermore, the Marlin's effort to push forward and provide monthly meets for swimmers, and the thoughtful transition of leadership from Coach Steve to Coach Bob during the pandemic, confirmed Monet made the right choice.  After this past challenging year, the Potomac Marlins has become a sort of extended family to us.  Thank you for that glimmer of hope which help Monet adapt to the shutdown and for the care and love the organization has given to its swimmers.

A. Chung

The Potomac Marlins have an excellent swim program that focuses on development and teaching proper stroke techniques.  Unlike other local teams, the Marlins foster a long-term commitment to swimming with positive reinforcement and encouragement.  There is no point in building the fastest 8-year-old swimmer in the pool if he or she burns out and quits a few years later.  The Marlins do not do that, and we are grateful.   

Beeleart

This was our son’s first year swimming on the Potomac Marlins as an 11 year-old.  He has been on other competitive year round teams and the Marlins surpassed our expectations, especially with the management of the team through a pandemic.  Coaches Rick and Reid have been excellent communicators as our son worked to find his groove this year.  They went above and beyond with meetings, emails and phone calls as we worked through some growing pains in the water.  Our son has been more motivated to work hard at practice this year than he’s ever been and loves the different ways he’s challenged at practices.  We look forward to seeing more progress in the years to come and are thankful to be a part of such a positive, supportive team!

M. & A.L. Copeland

"Trust the process" is what Coach Barry has been telling me since I was 9 yrs old. Another one of his favorite sayings when I was down about not being in the fast meets was, "you don't want to be the best 10, 12, 14, or 16  yr old, you want to be at your best when it's time for college."  Now that I am 17, a rising senior, and in the bigger meets, I have been having conversation with college coaches from all Divisions. Coach Barry was right, "Trust The Process." 

G. Bremer (16)

The coaches I’ve experienced throughout my time on the Marlins have been extremely supportive.  They have a positive mindset and they are encouraging while consistently working to help me improve my stroke technique and racing strategies. I also appreciate the sense of community created by the Marlin’s Team. –

F. Spar 

As a parent, I have appreciated the time and attention the coaches make to encourage and support my daughter during practices and at the meets.  They encourage her to set goals and to trust the process during the yearly swim meet cycle.  The coaches have always taken notice of my daughter’s willingness to work hard and she feels like they give her helpful feedback for improving her overall swim technique. As a parent, I have always felt respected and valued by the coaching staff.  They take time to answer my questions and often make a point of sharing their insights about my daughter’s progress. 

                                                                                                                                K. Spar

I am happy to say that Lizzie love swimming and even made it to the “All Stars” team during the 2019 summer league.  She contributes that milestone and success to her hard work and dedication during practice with the Potomac Marlins.  Eric is happy that he gets to continue with the Potomac Marlins and hoping in the future that he will make the high school swim team in 2 years. Lizzie and Eric enjoy the friendly and energetic atmosphere that Potomac Marlins provide.  They both cherish the comradery and friendly competition with their fellow swimmers. -

Yang

Despite a very challenging year, the Potomac Marlins have done an astoundingly good job at making sure the kids in their care were able to continue their pursuit of swimming.  As we all know, swimming is a very technical sport that requires a lot of reps, and significant time away from the pool greatly impacts a child's future in the sport.  Thanks to the highly professional and organized Marlins staff, as well as your numerous connections, you were able to not only make sure no prolonged interruptions occurred, but you also set the standard for how meets and practices can be conducted safely and responsibly despite covid-19 protocols in place. That is no small feat; it is a superlatively herculean undertaking and you accomplished it with zero drama and with dignity and aplomb.  In fact, a lot of the PVS ideas and templates for swim meets are still being used by other swim bodies into the summer.

On a more personal note, Coach Reid Owen has been a fantastic mentor for my daughter Inara.  I have never seen her progress as fast as she has this year.  Part of that is the foundation she built under James Zenyuh for 2 years, who is also amazing, and part of it is the skill and attention to detail Coach Owen brings to each and every practice.  He made practices fun and challenging all at the same time.  Every night when I pick Inara up from swim, she excitedly recalls all the details and events from Coach Reid's practices without me even having to inquire - now that's the sign of a kid who is responding.  It was a very difficult decision for us to accept moving her up to Coach Rick's group, but that's a reflection of how well Coach Reid has done with her.  Keep up the great work.

Y.  Hassan

Our daughter just finished her USA Swimming career.  One of her goals was to swim all her years with Marlins.  It just so happens that her last year was also the year of the pandemic!  However, Coach Barry and Coach Bill's resourcefulness and creativity kept the group practicing and swimming regular meets allowing our daughter to keep going.  Thanks Barry and Bill -- goal accomplished!

A. & A. St. Jean

My senior year would have been so different without Potomac Marlins swimming.  Thankfully our coaches kept us in the water and I was able to continue to train and have fun.  Off to college now, with many marlins t-shirts and my purple swim backpack! The summer outdoor practices were amazing!! Thank you for Potomac Marlins for the awesome swimming during the pandemic!  

A. St. Jean (17)

This year was very strange but we found a way to make it work. Our group was great with attendance this year, and we all followed the covid procedures as well as we could. We all came in masks up until we got in the water, and then divided ourselves on different sides of the lanes. Overall, it was a good season- challenging but good.

D. Gomez (17)

Being safe was not easy for a team that practices the way we do but i think we did a really nice job making sure we took all the right procedures to keep everyone safe. Everyone practiced social distancing by staying at opposite ends of the pool, everyone wore masks at all times, we filled out forms before every meet, and we did our best effort to stay apart in and out of the pool. Overall i think we handled the situation to the best of our abilities and kept everyone safe and healthy.

E. Gomez (15)

Our daughter Anna has been swimming for the Marlin’s for 7 years. We have loved everything about the Marlins organization and even more so through the COVID Pandemic.  The coaches and staff communicated to us through the year to let us know what they were doing to get the kids back in the pool. They managed to get them swimming again quickly, efficiently and with all the safety measures in place.  I felt comfortable sending my daughter to swim practice knowing Barry was going to follow the protocol even if the kids whined!  I was not expecting any meets and the Marlins pulled that off too and continued the safety protocols.   It was a rough year but the Marlins team made it work and the swimmers had a great year! 

V. Milewski 

At the start of the pandemic everything looked bleak but as soon as we could our coaches had us back in the water. Looking back the consistent practice schedule and something to look forward to in a day really help me get through 2020. Thanks to our coaches we could swim more and start to race in meets. I’m sure it was hard work but they made it seem pretty easy. So thank you to all the coaches and staff for making the 2020-2021 swim season possible.

A. Altenburg (15)

Our son has been with Potomac Marlins for three years. During this time he made a huge progress every year. We are very happy to have coach Dan last year. He put a lot of efforts to improve Sergey's swimming. We are also very happy with the attention that was paid to keep swimmers safe during the season regarding the COVID-19.

L. Patsuk

My swimmers are 10 and 12 years old and they love the Marlins. The coaches create dynamic, fun and challenging practices, but they also care about the kids succeeding outside the pool. The kids have also made great friends on the team and the camaraderie helps to motivate them in practices and make the meets so much fun. We couldn’t be happier!

C. Nelson

As we entered the summer of 2020, the harsh realities of Covid-19 were causing anguish and uncertainty for the Marlins swimmers and their families. Everyone was missing the practices, the meets, and the team camaraderie. To their credit, the entire Marlins team came together and developed a series of common-sense protocols that allowed the swimmers back into the water in a safe, comfortable manner. For many parents like me, the simple step of restarting swim practices made it feel like we were - for the first time - reclaiming what had been lost during the pandemic.

 B. Ludke

As parents, we heard from many experts that during COVID, kids still needed to socialize and exercise.  For that reason, I am SO GRATEFUL to the Marlins.  They pivoted quickly last summer and found places for their swimmers to get in the water and practice.  Then the coaches saw to it that the kids got to swim the entire winter season.  My daughter’s coach, Jenn Crowther, deserves a special “hat tip”. When Cate sprained her ankle, Jenn made sure that Cate got time to recover while allowing her a scaled-back practice routine in a separate lane.   That kind of supportive environment keeps kids connected to the sport that they love.  The Marlins showed patience, perseverance and pluck this past year and demonstrated remarkable leadership in the arena of competitive swimming.

H. Lennihan

Returning to the Potomac Marlins team was the best decision we could have made for our daughter. The coaching staff has been wonderful. They put their all into their swimmers. They put thought into their practices - making their sets interesting and challenging for their swimmers vs. a daily repeat of the same thing. The Potomac coaches deliver “true coaching” - one where her coaches actively watch their swimmers in their heat, give constructive feedback on tweaks and are encouraging not deflating. This approach has brought out the best of my daughter - she not only wants to do well for herself, but for her team and her coach. She knows her coach is one of her biggest cheerleaders and she is open to the feedback he gives because she can tell Dan is watching her heat and paying attention so she wants to be attentive to the feedback, and when that happens, then she applies it and improves.  Thank you for making Hailey’s return during COVID such a positive one - we are looking forward to being with the Marlins- the last season of her senior year. 

A. Peiken

 

PREVIOUS YEARS...

This is our first year with the Marlins. We could not be happier. My daughter enjoys going to swim and never complains (which is rare for an 11 year old). I credit this to Coach Steve. While he is firm with his coaching he has a way with the kids, they respect him, listen to him and follow thru with his advice.  My daughter is challenged every practice in the right way. Coach Steve takes the time with each swimmer, he focuses on what they need and helps them achieve it, whether if its fixing technique or to making sure they eat the right food. There are so many swim teams out there, we made the right decision with the Potomac Marlins and Coach Steve. Looking forward to many more years!

Jessica Marty

 

As a first year swimming parent, I could not have asked for a better team to join! The Mighty Marlins Coaches have taken my shy 6 year old and turned her into a confident swimmer.  Having never swum anything other than freestyle and backstroke, she amazed us all by finishing a 100 IM in her last meet.  She not only is learning swimming mechanics, but sportsmanship and the meaning of team camaraderie! Thank you Potomac Marlins for an awesome first season!

Carly Robb

 

As a military family, our child has been on eight different swim teams.  Moving to the DC area, we researched and tried out several clubs.  Hands down, the Marlins had the best coaches and most welcoming team, making our decision easy.  We also appreciate the active duty military discount.

Bridget McGovern

 

This is our daughter’s (7) first year with the Mighty Marlins. She has had an extremely positive experience. The coaches treat the swimmers with respect that is easily returned. They all know it is fun but also serious. Our daughter feels part of a team and looks forward to practice. She is not the fastest on the team but she has grown to understand that practicing makes her better and faster and that knowledge keeps her positive and enjoying the sport.

Blaise Hazelwood

 

Our overall experience is outstanding. Coaches are great, team environment is healthy and competitive. But for us the biggest thing is to see our ten year old swimmer's attitude change towards the game, he now thinks swimming at par to football or basketball. His view changed 180 degrees from the time when he started. Good thing that brought to us is, now we don't have to yell at him for going to practice anymore. A small step, but in the right direction. We hope, he carries on and get to the finish line with Marlins.

Santosh, Shriyan's Dad.

 

"The coaches give advice and always on your side. The practices are good and help you to improve. Coaches are encouraging and never harsh to you. Practices are very organized."

Shriyan

 

With four kids in multiple sports and activities, we truly appreciate the organization, communication, and professionalism of the Potomac Marlins.  The coaches provide excellent training and motivation, which have resulted in our swimmers' steady improvement over the past three seasons.  Our kids have made wonderful "swim friends," and the Marlins foster team spirit through a balance of individual goal setting and team incentives. It is so inspiring to see the older swimmers mentor the younger ones, and all of the swimmers cheer one another on at the meets.  

Cassie & Byron Pickard

 

The philosophy of the Marlins coaches is "If you work hard, you can improve, no matter what level swimmer you are." Neither of my children are super-star swimmers but at the end of a meet when they drop time, they understand the life lesson that I as their mother most want them to learn: results come from hard work. I am confident that this teaching by the Marlins coaches will benefit my children well beyond their years on the team.

Martha Stinson

 

As a relative new member to the Marlins Family - a little more than 1 year - Our son, Ian , loves the friendly atmosphere that the teammates have developed with each other.  He enjoys the camaraderie, goal setting and friendly competition that has helped him develop into not only a strong swimmer but also a stronger teammate.  One specific comment that Ian said comes to mind about the program - "the practices can be hard but I really like how Coach Barry pushes me."  It's great to hear your son excited about practice and working toward a specific goal.  As a family - we love the feedback that we have received on how our son is doing.   We reached out one day and casually asked how things were going and Coach Barry gave us two pages of feedback and areas he was working on with our son and how we could help reinforce certain techniques and behaviors.  We loved it.

Michael and Patty Carr

 

In September, my then almost 8 year old daughter started AGSD with Will and Allie at Cub Run. She loved summer swim, but she'd never done a flip turn, dove off the blocks, or raced a 50. Her IM was legal, but she needed a lot of work on her breaststroke. Half a year later, the only thing that's consistent is her love of swimming. It's crazy to think back to the fall and to compare it to where she is today.

Maureen Thaivalappil

 

We moved to the area last year and my daughter joined Rick's group.  Previously, she didn't have the strongest swimming foundation, but within those first few months with the Marlins Rick helped her develop into the strong, competitive swimmer she is becoming today.  She has formed an amazing bond of trust and respect with her coach and developed a passion for the sport.  Rick goes above and beyond to communicate with us individually about our daughter's swimming abilities and her social/emotional needs. We are beyond thrilled with our decision to join the Marlins team!

Carrie Schloth

 

The Mighty Marlins have been an excellent experience for my boys, age 9 & 7. They are not the kids that win their heats, and some meets I'm just happy when they do not DQ! The coaches are invested in making sure they are learning, improving, and still having fun. It's helped them understand the importance of a team, and to see the results of their hard work and dedication after they fail.  

Tara Radosevich

 

I love the individual attention the coaches give to my daughters. They watch them swim and make every effort at practices and meets to discuss their swimming with them. The entire staff works together to support all of the swimmers. This really makes a difference is the development of a swimmer. 

Jennifer Lungren

 

Our family is associated with Marlins for two years now and we could not be happier than what we were with the Coaches (Coach Rick - in particular). My kids would love to rush for the classes and come back home with their smiles still intact. This was all that we were looking from a swim-team - nothing more, nothing less. But what was offered by Coach Rick came as a huge surprise and we respect him immensely for this. During one of the family emergency where I lost one of my parent and both me and my wife had to fly out of country, I dropped an email to Coach Rick mentioning just as an "emergency". He wrote back to me in no-time and offered to even arrange for any ride that my kids might need during my absence, also making sure the kids are still feeling comfortable during the evening they spend with him. He was in constant touch with me through emails. This human-touch makes me proud and happy that I trusted my kids and their future in right hands.

Rangu Family

 

This is our 3rd year my daughter, Charlotte, has swam with the Marlins. She started in the Mighty Marlins and now swims with Coach Rick.  She has improved tremendously.  Plus, she really loves all the coaches she has had - in particular Rick, Ally and Will last year.  She always gets a big confidence boost after practice and meets.  We love that the Marlins have done that for her.  She loves her Marlin family!

Alicia Skoug

 

At our house Marlins is family. Through the years coaches and staff have always been there for our daughters both at  individual and team level offering advice and encouragement to reach their full potential.   

Sergio Gomez

 

Our daughter has been with the Marlins for 6 years.  It continues to be the perfect combination of fun and competitiveness that keeps her interest.  The coaching has been phenomenal, and this year Coach Steve has fueled our daughter’s desire to become a top tier athlete.  We appreciate that he lets her focus on the events and strokes that are best suited to her and challenges her to constantly improve.  She looks forward to future years with the Marlins.  

Jeff & Katie Schuman

 

This is my 10th year with the Marlins. My older daughter was 9 when we were referred by Anna Johannes (sp), who were in our summer league at the time and now a paraolympian.  We joined not because the girls are great swimmers but rather to keep them active. We went through a lot of great coaches like coach Czy, John Leber who continuously corrected their strokes...and even now coach Bill followed the tradition. My older girl, now swims and plays water polo for a college in Pennsylvania. My tiny 15th y.o. just now swims with coach Bill in the morning because she wants to get better! Like I said she is not the best swimmer but if you are willing the coach will work with you to take you to the next level. That's the dedications that you can expect from Marlin's coaches.  

Monique Nguyen

 

This is our 5th year with the Potomac Marlins and we are here to stay.  My son, Josh Michel, started at the very beginning level (Stroke School) at age 5 and has worked his way up to Age Group Aerobic Development (AGAD), where he swims with Coach Rick Stakel.  Coach Rick is an outstanding example of the excellent coaching Josh has received at every level.  Coach Rick has taken the time to get to know Josh both as a swimmer and as an individual.  He applauds his strengths and challenges Josh to work on his weaknesses.  He pushes the AGAD swimmers to the limit, yet does so in a way that is accessible and motivating.  He is incredibly positive and encouraging.  Every swimmer has ups and downs and when Josh was really struggling with his butterfly this winter, Coach Rick sat down and talked with him at length about all of the hard work he was doing and how it would pay off.  He then sat down with me and we talked for close to an hour about his philosophy as a coach and all of the positive things he saw in Josh.  I was amazed by how well he understands my son and could tell how much he cares about him as a person.  Coach Rick was right about hard work paying off – in the most recent meet, Josh took 16 seconds off of his 50 fly!  Most importantly, Josh absolutely loves to swim!  No matter how hard they work, Josh is always having fun and is excited about being in the pool.  I believe he is cultivating a lifelong passion for swimming though his experiences with the Potomac Marlins.

Maggie Daniels    

 

My son Brian is just finishing his 1st year as a Marlin with Coach Barry (AGSD- Chinq).  I'm really amazed at how much he has enjoyed being part of this team.  As a 7 year old I was a little apprehensive as to whether he would truly have the stamina to continue all year.  He loved swimming on our neighborhood team and expressed interest in continuing.  Brian has done so well, I feel that swimming is obviously a terrific mode of exercise, but more so such a great stress reliever.  He swims twice a week and it has never been a fight, not even once.  This team has allowed him to gain confidence in himself, while feeling so accomplished in becoming a better swimmer in each stroke.  He's had a great school year and I think swimming has helped in that.  He was thrilled when all of his "Marlin gear" arrived, I think it was the highlight of his fall.  Teachers at school may think he has no other clothes!  We really are so impressed with the level of instruction that Barry has offered, in swimming and diving (still a work in progress!).  Brian swam in 4 Mini meets, feeling stronger and more knowledgeable of the process with each meet.  It's been a great experience.

Megan Pickersgill

 

If you're looking for a team for a good swimmer whose goal is to swim in the NCAA, the small club atmosphere is great. You'll know the coaches, teammates and parents like family.  The emphasis on giving back is terrific. Great life lessons.

Donna Hale

 

Last year our son made his high school swim team after being out of the pool for quite some time. By the end of the season, he knew that in order to keep up that pace and reach his goals, he needed a Club team. We interviewed a few teams and are so glad we found the Marlins! From the coaching staff to the sign-up process, there are no surprises. It's fun, it's family oriented and we have no regrets!

Paula Izadpanah 

 

My son has found a great home at the Marlins,  this is his 4th year with the team and he could not be any happier with Coach Barry and the friends he has made through swimming.  I believe the Marlins understand there is not one set "swim formula" for all kids, and really try to work with each swimmer and their family on what the best approach is to achieve their own particular goals.  Barry gives honest and constructive feedback to his swimmers which is always appreciated as a parent.    Even when we are swimming with our NVSL summer team and my son does well, one of the first things he does is send a note to Coach Barry letting him know.  Over the past 4 years with the Marlins, my son has grown to truly love swimming, can't wait until the next meet, and is actually disappointed when there is not practice.  Something is working!

Cindy Bremer

 

This is our third year of our daughters (Katie and Norah) swimming with the Marlins. Both Katie and Norah have benefited tremendously from the Marlins program. More than the coaching and improvements we have seen in their swimming ability we appreciate the fun and inclusive nature of the Marlins team. It is a family environment in which all the kids are given a chance to grow, be accepted and truly enjoy the great sport of swimming.

Bob Ludke and Sabrina Corlette

 

We have been with the Cub Run Marlin location since 2008 with 3 children that are swimmers. Two currently are swimming with Coach Steve and Coach Kevin, prior to these coaches each of my children swam with Coach Rick. My 17 year old now coaches swimming, swims for her HS and will be playing soccer in college, she attributes much of her work ethic to her time swimming for Coach Steve. The programs at the Cub Run location are very well managed. 

Kerry Diederich - Children Aged 17, 14 and 12

 

I am 12 years old and I like to swim. I've been swimming once a week in different swim programs for several years. Honestly, I wasn’t getting much faster. I needed a team that would not only make me physically stronger but mentally stronger too. Then, 6 months ago, my parents found the Potomac Marlins. To sum it all up, this is the best swim season I’ve had in my life. My coaches are the kindest, toughest, most inspirational coaches anyone could have asked for. My coach, Rick Stakel, has changed my attitude towards swimming. When I first joined the team, I came tremendously close to walking out, my excuse being, “I just can’t. It’s too hard.” One of his favorite mottoes, though, is No pain, no game. He taught me that you must push yourself past what you think are your limits and feel the pain if you want to get better. I thought that my short height of 58 inches would make my failure inevitable, but I soon learned that there was a little spark in there I just needed to ignite. At my first swim meet, after three weeks of exhausting yet enjoyable practices, I dropped nearly 5 seconds on my 50 freestyle. To this day, his motivation and tips have helped me to go faster and faster at every meet. Unlike some other swim programs I’ve been in, my swim practices are fun. They are hard, some practices going up to 3,800 meters, but my coach, friends and I spice it up a bit. Making friends on the team was a breeze. Everyone on the team is cheerful, motivated, and funny. We make each other laugh after the hardest of swims. That is why this will forever be my favorite swim team

Jeanie Eng 

 

The Potomac Marlins have been part of our family for nearly 10 years.  Our son started with Coach Rick, moved on to Coach Steve, and finally landed in his senior group with Coach Kevin.  All the coaches are great.  Our son spent many years with Coach Kevin.  Coach Kevin emphasized train ng with purpose and to never lose sight of the big picture.  For our son, it was a perfect strategy as he stayed on task through the highs and lows and now has the opportunity to swim at the next level.  A big thank you to Kevin!!  As he prepares to graduate, we look back over the many years with the Marlins and realize what a positive influence swimming and the Marlins have had on his life.  We wish the Marlins continued success and we will miss the team. 

The Gryski’s 

 

As a military family, moving last year was very challenging for our Daughter (7), but finding the Potomac Marlins was a blessing!  The Chinquapin Mighty Marlins Coaches are outstanding!  Madison loves going to practice and the meets which is a true testament to their coaching philosophy and making it fun for the young swimmers.  Thank you for the great season and she is looking forward to moving up and continuing with the Marlins!

CDR Eva Van Camp

 

Our children have been swimming with the Potomac Marlins for 11 years.  The experience, dedication and commitment of the Marlin Coaches has developed our children from Mini Marlins, Age Group, Eastern Zones, Sectionals, Junior Nationals, Nationals all the way through the Olympic Trials in Omaha. The Potomac Marlins have an exceptional training process that reaps the best results.  As a parent, the Potomac Marlins offer a team atmosphere where the coaches, swimmers and parents all feel part of a large cohesive swim family.    They make early mornings and long swim trips fun and rewarding.  Our family gives the Potomac Marlins the highest recommendation and would not swim for any other local swim club. 

Barb and All Jansen

 

Over the years, our kids have been at multiple levels in multiple training groups within the Potomac Marlins Swim Club. In fact, our 18 year old has been with the Marlins since age 9.  Although I could speak to the training, the coaching, the discipline and what our kids have learned about perseverance, what I am most thankful for is what the Marlins have been to my children … a second family.

Laura Kent

 

I am very impressed with Potomac Marlins coaches, particularly Coach Bill.  When Haley first came to Potomac Marlins she was on the verge of quitting swimming after 5 years of competitive swimming. She loved swimming, but had lost her motivation and confidence.  Coach Bill understood that she was a multi-sport athlete and worked to welcome her to the team and not apply to much pressure on her to only focus on swimming.  After two years of being on the team, Haley has a completely different attitude about swimming.  She has regained her confidence and motivation and has started to compete in meets again.  Additionally, her stroke technique and ability to swim longer distances have significantly improved. Bill’s training philosophy has also been very instrumental in Haley dropping significant time in her key events  If it were not for Coach Bill, Haley likely would not be swimming competitively.  Potomac Marlins is a team that dedicates its resources to helping each swimmer improve while ensuring the sport remains enjoyable for the swimmers.  I highly recommend this team to the multi-sport athlete that wants to remain competitive in swimming.  Coach Bill truly cares about all of his swimmers and strives to help all swimmers improve their technique and performance.  

Désirée Seaward

 

I am 12 years old and I like to swim. I've been swimming once a week in different swim programs for several years. Honestly, I wasn’t getting much faster. I needed a team that would not only make me physically stronger but mentally stronger too. Then, 6 months ago, my parents found the Potomac Marlins. To sum it all up, this is the best swim season I’ve had in my life. My coaches are the kindest, toughest, most inspirational coaches anyone could have asked for. My coach, Rick Stakel, has changed my attitude towards swimming. When I first joined the team, I came tremendously close to walking out, my excuse being, “I just can’t. It’s too hard.” One of his favorite mottoes, though, is No pain, no game. He taught me that you must push yourself past what you think are your limits and feel the pain if you want to get better. I thought that my short height of 58 inches would make my failure inevitable, but I soon learned that there was a little spark in there I just needed to ignite. At my first swim meet, after three weeks of exhausting yet enjoyable practices, I dropped nearly 5 seconds on my 50 freestyle. To this day, his motivation and tips have helped me to go faster and faster at every meet. Unlike some other swim programs I’ve been in, my swim practices are fun. They are hard, some practices going up to 3,800 meters, but my coach, friends and I spice it up a bit. Making friends on the team was a breeze. Everyone on the team is cheerful, motivated, and funny. We make each other laugh after the hardest of swims. That is why this will forever be my favorite swim team.

Swimmer - Audrey Eng

 

“Our daughter has learned the importance of dedication and hard work in a challenging activity while maintaining the most important lesson, which is to have fun.  The Potomac Marlins are certainly doing something right as we have never seen our daughter more engaged and enthusiastic about a sport!” 

James Meggesto

 

My two sons (8 and 10) are lucky to have Coach Steve as their summer swim coach and we drive a bit further to swim for the Potomac Marlins so that one day Coach Steve will be their club swim coach too.  In the meantime and for the past 3 years, our experiences with the Potomac Marlins have been great with Coach Will, Coach Allie and Coach Rick, including some good natured teasing by Coach Steve in passing.  There is a healthy atmosphere of competition that pushes our sons to go for personal bests.  Coach Will and Coach Allie instill good stroke, start and turn fundamentals.  Coach Rick takes swimming to the next level and his love of the sport and coaching is evident by his thorough instruction on expectations, goal setting, practice strategy and effort, race preparation and strategy, and stroke, turn and start refinement. 

Kelli Francuzenko