Prospects Fall Camp October 19-21, 2012

The camp that almost wasn’t, turned out successfully in the end. The Prospects Fall Camp was scheduled to be held at Watermania October 19-21, however on October 17 I found out that the pool was unavailable. After considering cancellation,I contacted a couple of coaches, who put me onto Neil Jones, coach and teacher at St. George’s School in Vancouver. Neil managed to get us enough pool time to have the camp run in its entirety on one day’s notice!

Thirty-two swimmers aged 13 and 14 for the girls and 14 and 15 for the boys took part. The coaches who assisted were Brad Dalke, Kamloops Classics, Rod Barratt, Pacific Coast Swimming and Martin Gurrin from TYEE. The camp followed these main points:

Stroke Reliability

-       stroke counting all the time, going slow, fast, warm-up, warm-down

-       maintaining count under work load

Easy Speed

-       pulse points, relaxation, go fast without going hard

-       balance between arms and legs

-       pace

Push-offs and Underwater kicking

-       feet hip width apart on the wall for a better push and a proper streamline position

-       small fast kicks, both ways

Breaststroke Technique with Scott Dickens VNSC

-       narrowness of the kick created by pushing straight back, not out and around.

-       importance of a slower, wider out-sweep

-       staying closer to the surface

Timed 25 Underwater Dolphin kick

We will be measuring this at all the Swim BC camps. There are several elements for swimmers to improve on in this test. Starts, streamlining, dolphin kick and breath control are all part of this test.


Saturday afternoon we had a circuit for the swimmers. There were four stations, underwater video analysis with Graham Olson, and start video analysis with the camp coaches. The “dry” sessions were mental performance enhancement with Alex Hodgins and recovery nutrition with Cristina Sutter. The swimmers spent 45-50  minutes at each station before moving along.

We were fortunate to have two Olympians as guest speakers. Scott Dickens told the swimmers about his journey to setting two Canadian records at the London Games. He stressed the unwavering commitment and limitless passion required to perform at that level. Scott stressed the primacy of technique in breaststroke and the reliability of that technique under the pressure of performance. He spoke about focusing on the process of your race and not the outcome, how you are going to swim not what the time or place is going to be. Scott talked about how he made a point of becoming comfortable with being uncomfortable. Learning how to bear the pain of racing by pushing himself there two to three times a week.

On Saturday night Brent Hayden brought his bronze medal for everyone to see, touch and wear. Brent talked about how all swimmers can inspire others through their sport, friends, classmates, and relatives can all be touched by your dedication. Brent talked about how the disappointment of Beijing kept him going to London and his medal win. Brent told stories about his medal winning swim and the lead up to that. Brent said that at the end of the race he thought about transcending the pain to finish the race. Brent had many stories and humorous moments to share. He said that his motto has been “do your best and have fun!”

Click here for camp workouts.

Click here for Dive 25 Underwater test results.

Click here for 400 Kick test results

Click here for 50 Kick test results.

Participating swimmers:

Lam, Heather


Lawrance, Erin


Dalke, Megan


Padington, Mackenzie


Gay, Micah


Crisp, Lauren


Gibson, Jessie


Whelan, Jasmine


Smit-Anseeuw, Esmee


Nakano, Robyn


Doyon, Lydia


Borrowdale, Chelsea


Dunlop, Katherine


Ledoux, Renae


Lamoureux, Brooke


Bennett, Haley


Yuan, Darren


Zakala, Josh


Zhao, Edwin


Duan, Harry


Thormeyer, Markus


Gilbert, Colin


Branham, Mackenzie


Baker, Chris


Fan, Hau-Li


Duke, Nicolas


Paproski, Christopher


Schaffler, Maximilian


Olafson, Carson


Liu, Jerry


Jakac-Sinclair, Michael


Macleod, Logan