Once a Sea Dragon, Always a Sea Dragon

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Spending free time in their younger years as part of the Sea Dragons swim team at the Monon Community Center was a great experience for Noah Whited, 17, and Emily Hand, 15. The practices, the meets, hanging out with their friends … all super-special memories.

According to the dynamic swimming duo, they believe their past team experience gives them an advantage in dealing with these youngsters.

“It definitely makes it easier to relate,” says Noah. “I know what it’s like to be a kid in the pool with 10 people in your lane and how distracting that is.”

For Emily, she relates to the stress around the meets. “I remember always being stressed out that I would miss my event,” she said. “So, we work on making sure everyone knows where they’re supposed to be.”

The coaches manage the age difference (4 – 14) and team size by splitting practices up into three different sessions and then splitting the lanes based on ability. Nonetheless, the responsibility makes Noah seem older and wiser than his years.

While Noah and Emily work a lot on endurance and technique making sure all their swimmers are comfortable with their stroke, they believe the team experience goes much beyond that.

“We want them to do well, but our ultimate goal is to have fun and make it a good experience,” said Noah. “When they’re having fun, I have fun … it’s a great environment for them. It’s really important to be engaged, chat about things other than swimming and cheer them on during their meets.”

Both coaches plan on sticking with their coaching duties for the next few years. “I’d like to stay with the program and see where we go,” said Noah.

For more information about the CCPR aquatics program or the Sea Dragons swim team, contact Leah Weprich, Aquatics Program Supervisor, lweprich@carmelclayparks.com or by phone at 317-573-5250.