2017 Olympic Training Center - First Week


I cannot say enough about the OTC experience. 

So far this week the swimmers have been met several Olympians and NCAA champions.  They started out with the Stanford team Saturday.  Katie Ledecky, Simone Manuel, Ella Eastin and the other NCAA champs spoke to the swimmers.  The girls were star struck when they ran into Katie in the locker room.  Kevin Cordes talked about how he cried the first time he swam the 200 breast.  Elizabeth Beisel jumped in the water to show how she does her back stroke turn and watched each JO swimmer try her turn and gave them pointers after.  Yesterday Ruta Meilutyte, WR 50 and 100 M breaststroke, gave individual instruction on her breaststroke turn.  Click on the name for a link about them.  Photos and video will be forthcoming on Dropbox.


The Princeton coach took time to speak to our swimmers about college admissions and how to match yourself to a team.  She stressed the importance of speaking to your parents about how much they could afford to spend on college.  She told them that they should take AP courses in the areas they liked best.  For example, if they were thinking about medical school then AP science.  She said is it crazy to take six AP courses, schools do not expect that.  She stressed the importance of foreign languages also on an application, besides good grades and test scores. 

One of the biggest points she tried to make with the swimmers is that they should not rule out an Ivy for financial reasons.  Each Ivy has a financial aid calculator on their site which will give you an idea of how much your family might be expected to spend based on the family income.  After that, they give grants.  Their goal is that no student have any debt when they leave college.  I have a friend who is a Princeton alum and interviews prospective students.  He said the very same thing.  Princeton, as well as other well endowed private schools, does not want students to leave with debt. 

She also discussed following the school of your choice's swim team.  Compare your times to those on the team and check out in what year the swimmers are.  Coaches look to fill empty spots on the team, backstrokers and distance swimmers in a particular year, for example.  And, be realistic.  She said your coach is your greatest resource and you should lean on him.

One important take away is finding a fit for your goals in the pool and in the classroom. Never choose a school just based on how impressive it sounds athletically or academically.

The UCLA assistant coach was on deck talking to one of our swimmers about swimming for the Japan National Team!  She gave her card and advice on when and where to go.  They will be in communication in the years to come. 

Coach Dave knows all these coaches and swimmers personally.  We are so fortunate that our swimmers have been able to interact and receive instruction and advice from world famous athletes and coaches.  I know when it is time for my daughter to look at colleges, Coach Dave will be there to assist her in getting into the best school possible based on her grades and swimming.  He will communicate directly with the coach.  He will be there for each of our children.  College coaches know a TSM swimmer can swim in college.  Swimming on TSM can tip the balance for admissions in to the school of your swimmer's choice.

It is difficult to understand the experience if you have never been here.  There is greatness every where.  Because our children have grown up on Team Santa Monica they expect to spend Spring Break here.  It is no big deal.  But it is a Very Big Deal.  They have an opportunity that very few people in this country have.  First to swim on an elite team and second to come here, the Olympic Training Center.   There are no other club teams here. 

I am very grateful for the opportunity to chaperone this trip and get to know the swimmers.  They have been mature and hard working.  They are representing TSM in the best possible light. 

I am very grateful for our outstanding coaches, Dave, Jimmy and Mohammed, here with us now.  They are well respected in this field and work hard every day to learn every little thing to improve our children as swimmers and humans.

Check out the videos and photos on Facebook. 




More photos: