The 2015 Prospects West training camp and competition took place on April 16-19, in Lethbridge, AB, on the campus of the University of Lethbridge.
Twenty-four SwimBC athletes from across the province, ranging in age from 13 to 15 (girls aged 13-14yrs; boys aged 14-15yrs) came together at 5:30am at Vancouver International Airport for the flight to Calgary before boarding a bus to Lethbrdige.
The camp differed from past years in that there was far less of a “training” component and a much greater emphasis on “learning” - learning how to be a better swimmer, learning what it takes to move up to the next level, learning how to come together with a new group of teammates, learning how to manage themselves over the course of long days.
Brent Hayden came in to the camp as well, to assist with the coaching, but also doing a phenomenal job of inspiring the swimmers with his message of passion, perseverance, and overcoming obstacles on his way from goof-off in summer pools to Olympic medalist.
The swimmers all kept log books, in which they kept a record of each session and each day’s activities, as well as getting feedback each day from their group coach.
The camp itself was structured around a model of “race - evaluate/analyze/correct - race again”. This took for the form of a timed-final long course meet early on Friday morning, video review later Friday, practice on skills and additional video review Saturday, then finishing up with another meet on Sunday.
After SwimBC won the meet (scored Top6 across the three teams in attendance - TeamBC, TeamAlberta, TeamSaskitoba), we gave decided to give our athletes a new challenge: We would use the results from Friday’s meet as the entry times for Sunday’s meet, and score the meet using HyTek’s “Improvement” points (basically, being within 1sec. of entry time was worth 1pt; beating one’s entry time by up to 1sec. was good for 2pts.; going faster by 1-2sec. was worth 3pts.; and going more than 2sec. faster was worth 4pts.
We told the swimmers that we were confident they could win both the “normal” point score, as well as the “improvement” score, and indeed, they delivered on both counts, with many swimmers indeed posting lifetime bests in the Sunday morning meet.
Team Scores (Top 6: 7-5-4-3-2-1)
- Team BC - 1006
- Team AB - 918
- Team Saskitoba - 758 (adjusted for team size)
Team Scores - Improvement
- Team BC - 82
- Team AB - 54
- Team Saskitoba - 50
Results for the meet are available through the regular Swimming Canada meet results system (look under SwimAlberta); we will also try to get an online results link up on our website.